Discovery of King Richard III’s remains named as one of the decade’s ‘extraordinary discoveries’
The discovery and identification of King Richard III’s remains by leading academics at the University of Leicester have been named as one of the decade’s ‘extraordinary archaeological discoveries’ by Historic England and as one of the top ten discoveries of the decade by The New Scientist.
Richard III’s skeleton was found during an archaeological excavation at Greyfriars car park in Leicester in 2012 and was confirmed as the remains of the English King killed in the Battle of Bosworth in 1485. Experts from the University of Leicester analysed DNA from the bones and they matched that of relatives of the Monarch’s family. His remains were reburied 530 years after this death at Grade II listed Leicester Cathedral in 2015.
The success of the Greyfriars project and the subsequent identification of Richard III is based on the expertise of academic and research staff at the University of Leicester, and included experts from the fields of archaeology, genetics, osteology and geneaology.
Professor Turi King, Lecturer in Genetics and Archaeology at the University of Leicester said:
“We are so proud to be part of this incredible discovery and identification of the remains of King Richard III. It was a tremendous team effort not only by staff at the University of Leicester but also members of the Richard III Society, Leicester City Council and others.
"Richard III was one of only a handful of English Monarchs whose remains were lost. This project solved that mystery and shed new light on the life, and death, of one this country’s most famous kings.”
Duncan Wilson, Chief Executive of Historic England said:
“This has been a truly remarkable decade of landmark archaeological discoveries. The past never ceases to surprise us. Over the past ten years archaeologists have learned where Richard III was laid to rest, about what kind of food our Bronze Age ancestors on the Fens ate and how medieval villagers in Yorkshire mutilated corpses to prevent them rising from the dead. There is always more to learn and I look forward to the next 10 years of amazing discoveries.”