Richard III is found: Leicester academics confirm remains are those of English king

Academics from the University of Leicester have confirmed a skeleton found beneath a car park in the city is that of the English king, Richard III.

February 4, 2013

Source: University of Leicester

In a press conference broadcast live on television, a number of researchers from the university explained how they had reached the conclusion “beyond reasonable doubt”.

The evidence they presented included DNA analysis of the bones that had matched the same genetic profile as descendants of the monarch’s family.

Richard Buckley, the lead archaeologist on the search for Richard III, said: “It is the academic conclusion of the University of Leicester that the individual exhumed at Grey Friars in August 2012 is indeed King Richard III, the last Plantagenet King of England.

“It has been an honour and privilege for all of us to be at the centre of an academic project that has had such phenomenal global interest and mass public appeal. Rarely have the conclusions of academic research been so eagerly awaited.”

Leicester geneticist Turi King confirmed that DNA from the skeleton matches that of two of Richard III’s family descendants - Canadian-born furniture maker Michael Ibsen and a second person who wished to remain anonymous.

Richard III died at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485 but his grave laid undiscovered for centuries because the church around it was demolished in the 1500s.

According to the Leicester team that examined the body, the skeleton had suffered 10 injuries, including eight to the skull, part of which was sliced off. An image of the battle-scarred skull was released to the media for the first time today.

The team also confirmed the bones belonged to a man in his late 20s or early 30s, and had been carbon dated to a period from 1455 to 1540.

Carbon dating also showed the individual had a high protein diet - including significant amounts of seafood - meaning he was likely to be of high status.

simon.baker@tsleducaiton.com

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