Richard III has been found! Does news like this excite you more - or less - than current affairs?
The remains of long lost King Richard III have finally been discovered buried under a modern car park in Leicestershire England, more than 500 years after he became the last English king to be killed in battle! This must be one of the great archaeological finds of recent decades. But does this sort of news intrigue and excite you, as it does me, or do you regard it with nothing more than mild curiosity, irrelevent to your life and times in modern society?
I find it all very interesting and it is really clever how the Historians have pieced it all together. I just hope his remains get buried in York Minster and he can rest in peace.
Very clever combination of historical evidence and of course science Asp52 - like a forensic detective story. I believe the Anglican Leicester Cathedral is favoured for interment tho' I'm not sure why - particularly as Richard was a Roman Catholic.
Much more exciting; it's good to have some news that's not depressing or boring. It provides the answer to lots of questions and might re-write history a little. I was very interested in this historical figure when at school - was he or was he not responsible for the deaths of the princes in the tower? I thought maybe not and for me he became a fascinating part of our colourful history.
Findings such as this make history come alive for students. 'The King in the Car Park' seems to be the popular news headline at the moment; the mind's eye has to go back to the battle scene and superimpose it on the Leicestershire tarmac. Great!
Thanks Annart. I agree. Sadly the discovery can't resolve the Princes in the Tower mystery, but it has already revealed details of the other great event in Richard's life - how he died in the Battle of Bosworth, seemingly in the thick of the action.
Even illegitimatised (the laws on this are intricate and involve breach of promise to the French bride Richard Neville found for Edward. To the Church Edward's sons were bastard born), Edward's sons had a better claim than Henry VII. They had to go.
Thanks for the vote! Much appreciated. Sorry for the delay in response but in the middle of the French countryside for a while without reliable wifi!
Interersting, yes, it dots the 'i's and crosses the 't's in a chapter in our English history, does it excite me ? No. I never get excited by the news.
I find it very interesting after watching the entire series on the Tudor's It is interesting to learn that they ruined his reputation by making him out to be a villain when he really was not. They can even tell that he was defamed even after his death by the stab wounds in his buttocks. Also the fact that they found him underneath a parking lot that was once a monastery that Henry VIII had destroyed.
It's incredible how the Protestants and the Catholics fought each other all in the name of God.
It's certainly true peoplepower that history tends to be written by the victors, in this case the Tudors. Although in the longer term, objectivity can occasionally salvage the truth as we can see in the recent reassessing of Richard's life. Thanks.
It's exciting of course. So history was literally paved over in this case!
It's difficult to give a more or less answer - I think cutting edge international news stimulates a different part of the brain to that of historical news but both can make the hairs on your neck stand up!
This discovery certainly had me rooted in an armchair for an hour and a half. Both detective story and archaeological fairytale, with a few eccentric English characters thrown in - a perfect combination for a Channel 4 documentary! I loved the idealistic Philippa for her tenacity and belief but thought her a bit over the top when the bones of Richard were scrutinised for wound marks. Poor woman. She hadn't expected her hero to be full of horrific scars, and to be told Richard's brains had probably been spilling out after battle! And the dagger up the jonxy came a a bit of a shock!
It was this mix of scientific analysis, medieval brutality and political propaganda that made the whole story a huge hit. And all played out in a car park!
So, what did we learn from this story? Well,we know that some parts of the historical narrative are probably true and definitely false. Which is more than likely the norm for any sort of history! Richard was hunch backed but not disabled. He did die a hero's death on the battle field but suffered a humiliating defeat. His body did not end up in the Soar but was given a decent burial. He was more handsome than his portraits suggest! Richard probably did order the murder of the Princes in the Tower but managed to stay 'clean'. Shakespeare used an awful lot of dramatic license when he created his Richard III!
A great story. All we need now is for King Arthur to be found under a supermarket in Carlisle and the legendary jigsaw will be complete.
Thanks. I can agree with most of that assessment of Richard and of the programme and Philippa (can one be so devoted to an old skull? - I guess so if the imagination brings him back to life as a living person). King Arthur? - That WOULD be a story !!
Well I love history and I'm also a fan of some of the archeology programmes on the TV so I was very interested that the remains of this king were found. Do I find it more interesting than current affairs? Actually yes, since most of the other stuff was all doom and gloom anyway. This piece of news was not only fascinating but a refreshing change!
Thanks Seeker. Totally agree! Most current affairs is literally that - 'current' - of no lasting importance or memory, even if it matters today. But this is history (albeit rewritten history) which will affect all future history books on the subject.
Slain on Bosworth Field in August, 1485, Richard's broken body was taken by the Grey Friars and buried in their church. Less than fifty years later the idiot Henry VIII had the smaller priories dissolved. Greyfriars was one of those hit, the buildings rendered unusable. Fast forward three hundred and fifty years and you have a car park on the site.
Lancastrian/Tudor (same thing really) propaganda had put about tales of Richard's disfigurement. Yorkists (of which I am one, oddly enough) maintained the 'hump' was added to Richard's portrait to make him look bad. You've got to hand it to him, that he conducted a dazzling military career in the service first of his father Richard, Duke of York and later his half-brother Edward (son of an archer, not fathered by Richard, as he was on campaign in France with Edward III during the latter part of the 100 Years War).
When Richard went to meet Henry in battle Edward's sons were still alive, in protective custody in the Tower (their claim to the throne was officially nullified by Richard in a bid to reduce risk to them from Henry, yet they still had a stronger claim to the throne than Henry).
Not long after Henry's victory they had departed into the hereafter. Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick had switched sides when Edward announced his intention to marry Elizabeth Woodville, and her brothers had been ennobled, allies of the Yorkist cause. Warwick was defeated and slain at the Battle of Barnet (now NW London), the last major hurdle, his estates were given - some to Richard, Duke of Gloucester for his unswerving loyalty to Edward, including his favourite Middleham.
Before his reign had gone far his young son Edward of Middleham died and Queen Anne Neville followed soon after. You can imagine that even though racked with grief he had to run the kingdom as best he could. I don't buy the tyranny bit. He was well-loved in the North and Midlands with a loyal following. It was only on that August morning in 1485 near Leicester he found out just who his friends were.
Henry had a large following of French and other mercenaries, and when Richard saw his chance he galloped with a small escort at Henry's own company, slicing Henry's standard bearer from the neck to the navel with one stroke of the sword and was about to set on the surprised Henry when the mercenaries' presence of mind saved their paymaster. Richard was cut down and slain in battle, not begging for a horse to flee, Will!
Wow - Richard could have done with you as a public relations officer alancaster! Hope no Lancastrians comment here or we could rekindle the Wars of the Roses! Seriously, thanks for the comment and history; you must be fascinated by these discoveries.
Leicester is the nearest cathedral, suitable for the burial of a king whatever his persuasion might have been. We were all Roman Catholic at the time, the Reformation still had some time to gather momentum before Luther emerged in Henry VIII's day.
I guess the argument is that Catholic Richard died at the hands of the man whose son would later destroy the Catholic monasteries. Some think it wrong to bury Richard under an Anglican faith which may not even exist but for Henry's victory over him.
There is a booklet RICHARD III by G W O Woodward by Pitkin Pictorials, a light intro to the man. A book GOOD KING RICHARD? (Constable p/back, ISBN 0-09-468840-0) by Jeremy Potter is an in-depth study of his character from divers historical sources
I think it excites me about as much as current affairs. It's interesting that they were able to reconstruct his face so that we can see what he really looked like. I've always been interested in history and have written lots of history hubs.
I don't know how accurate these facial reconstructions can be, but in this case the finished result does bear a close resemblence to the portraits of Richard - maybe a little fuller-faced, but very similar. It helps bring history to life doesn't it?
I think it's absolutely brilliant that Richard's remains have been found after a centuries hide and seek game with historians. For us to witness the unearthing of such a discovery is being a part of modern day history. I also found it quite fascinating that a fellow Canadian was discovered to be a 17th great-grand-nephew to Richard and that it was his DNA used to reveal the truth. Maybe now after examination of his remains, some myths can be either confirmed and/or debunked, and we may rest assured the monarch will be shown much more dignity when interred in Leicester's cathedral.
Thanks klidstone! I agree with all you say. And certainly it's interesting that they've already reassessed some of the accounts of the degree of Richard's spinal deformity, and also gained a better idea of the critical blows which led to his death.
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