So, now it’s more or less certain that the bones of Richard III were found buried under a car park in Leicester, England. I happened to be in London when the news broke that researchers were looking closely at the site. At first it sounded like a bit from a “Monty Python” sketch…but then I began to read the details and wonder.
It seems so logical. Here we have a King that not that well liked in his time. He is reputed to have been killed in the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485. It was the battle that ended the “War of the Roses” and succeeded in opening the way for the Tudors to rule England for about 117 years.
But a King, in a car park? Now, that’s surreal. But think about. A battle raged. Men died in messy ways and there was confusion all about. His body was put into a hole on the grounds of the nearby Grayfriars Abbey. There it lay, decomposing and nearly becoming soil until some scholars decided in 2012 to have a look at the area where the Abbey was located.
Using state-of-the-art techniques and then DNA analysis, it has now fairly certain that they had located the old misshapen monarch himself.
Pity poor Richard. Vilified by Shakespeare and history in general, he kept a solitary watch on the substratum of Leicester. Now, what town or city in England doesn’t need a car park? Try to find one when you driving on the left and scratching around the great sites trying to avoid hurting a pedestrian. It’s not easy.
So Leicester has one less car park but England has gained the bones of a key player in the history of Britain.
Without the foibles and darkness of guys like Richard, where would Shakespeare be? Probably sipping some grog in a Stratford ale house, pinching the wench and dreaming up weird characters with twisted spines.
Long Live the King!