Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Richard III’s skeleton came within inches of destruction

Date:
August 23, 2013
Source:
University of Leicester
Summary:
Archaeologists have revealed the bones of Richard III came within inches of destruction.

Richard III in the grave.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Leicester

Leicester archaeologists have revealed the bones of Richard III came within inches of destruction.

A team from the University of Leicester Archaeological Services (ULAS) have discovered during a second, follow-up dig, a massive disturbance at the Grey Friars site where the bones of the medieval monarch were found last year.

The news comes one year on from when archaeologists began the Search for Richard III at the Grey Friars site on 25 August last year.

During their second excavation at the Grey Friars site last month, the archaeologists found a large area of the church which had been completely destroyed.

The area -- measuring over 5 metres by 10 metres -- was just inches away from Richard III's skull, meaning the remains of the Last Plantagenet King came very close to being destroyed.

The disturbance covers a far larger area than the remnants of the Victorian toilet which were also discovered near Richard's grave during the first dig last year.

Site director Mathew Morris said: "It's a miracle that Richard III's skeleton was where it was. To the east, there is a massive disturbance that has removed all evidence of the church -- which must have come within inches of his head.

"The disturbance is so big we didn't have all of it in the excavation area. We uncovered an area more than 5 metres by 10 metres. We never got to the bottom -- it is at least 1.8 metres deep.

"We don't know what caused it yet. It's possible it was related to the demolition of the Grey Friars church -- or it could have happened any time after the friary was disbanded. Whatever it was, it came very close to removing Richard's head.

"It's entirely possible that because he was underneath the Victorian outhouses, he was protected from it.

"We found some pottery remnants in the area, but until we have examined those we won't have any idea when the disturbance happened."

The team first started digging on the Grey Friars site on 25 August, 2012.

They came across Richard's remains on the very first day -- but didn't exhume the skeleton until they were able to determine where the bones were buried within the friary.

The archaeologists worked with a team of experts from a wide range of disciplines -- including genetics, osteoarchaeology, forensic pathology and genealogy -- to determine the skeleton's identity.

The results revealed that -- beyond reasonable doubt -- the remains were those of the medieval monarch, and the University announced its discovery to a global audience in February.

Leading UK construction and infrastructure company Morgan Sindall is currently on the Grey Friars site constructing a King Richard III Visitor Centre to showcase some of the finds from the site. Morgan Sindall worked with the archaeological team to enable access to the site whilst building work continues.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Leicester. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Leicester. "Richard III’s skeleton came within inches of destruction." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 August 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130823091146.htm>.
University of Leicester. (2013, August 23). Richard III’s skeleton came within inches of destruction. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130823091146.htm
University of Leicester. "Richard III’s skeleton came within inches of destruction." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130823091146.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Fossils & Ruins News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Turns Out Jack The Ripper's True Identity Is Still Unknown

Turns Out Jack The Ripper's True Identity Is Still Unknown

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) After testing DNA from a shawl found near one of Jack the Ripper's victims, a scientist said he'd identified the killer. New reports refute the claim. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Fish Fossil Shows First-Ever Sex Was Done Side By Side

Fish Fossil Shows First-Ever Sex Was Done Side By Side

Newsy (Oct. 19, 2014) A 380-million-year-old fish may be the first creature to have copulative sex - and it was side by side with arms linked, like square dancers. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
As Sweden Hunts For Sub, "Cold War" Comparisons Flourish

As Sweden Hunts For Sub, "Cold War" Comparisons Flourish

Newsy (Oct. 19, 2014) With Sweden on the look-out for a suspected Russian sub, a lot of people are talking about the Cold War, but is it an apt comparison? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
So, Kangaroos Didn't Always Hop

So, Kangaroos Didn't Always Hop

Newsy (Oct. 16, 2014) Researchers believe an extinct kangaroo species weighed 500 pounds or more and couldn't hop. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins