Today, archaeologists from Leicester University have confirmed that the bones found beneath a car park in Leicester are indeed those of the last Plantagenet king of England. This is such exciting news and a great day for the city of Leicester and those involved with the find.
Finally, and after being ignominiously interred in a nameless grave for 527 years, he will be given the burial he so richly deserves. And no matter what ones thoughts are about Richard, whether we believe him to be a murdering tyrant who ascended the throne with the blood of children (and many others) on his hands, or a much maligned monarch who did his best for his country; he was king of this island and, Tudor propaganda aside, he was in many respects, a fair and just king as well.
And his death at Bosworth Field was a terrible one (the skeleton bears witness to this) as, charging up Ambion hill towards Henry Tudor, he was surrounded by Lord Stanley and his Cheshire Men and, unhorsed he was hacked to death.
What they should do now is re construct his facial features using all that wonderful technology at their disposal and let us know once and for all what he actually looked like. Then give him the burial he has waited so long for, with all the pomp and ceremony befitting a king who died so bravely fighting for his crown and his kingdom.
But where should he be buried? Some say Leicester, others say he should lie with our other kings and queens in Westminster; but Richard was very popular in York and he was known as Lord of the North. I think York Minster would be a very fitting last resting place for Richard.
It was here, after all that his beloved son, Edward was invested as Prince of Wales, and no doubt Richard attended many services here both as Duke of Gloucester and later, as king. And, as I was born and brought up in York I am probably a teeny bit biased towards his being buried there.
One can’t help but wonder if, somewhere up on high there will be much chuntering and gnashing of teeth from long dead Lancastrians and Tudors over these events on Earth.
I bet old Henry V11 will be a tad miffed. ☺
Now, should I ever be in a position to finance an archaeological dig, I would love to find the grave of one of my own hero’s from that traumatic period of history. Antony Woodville Earl Rivers who was beheaded at Pontefract on the orders of Richard (while he was still Duke of Gloucester) and thrown into an unmarked grave…just like Richard.
To read more of this amazing story Go here