Thursday, February 7, 2013

Richard III

KIng Richard III
Princes In The Tower















































Of course, you heard the news that the skeleton discovered under the car park in England really did turn out to be Richard III, right?  Remember from Shakespeare, "A horse, a horse, my kingdom for a horse"?  That would be the king!  Also, I hope it isn't true that he killed the young princes that were imprisoned in the Tower of London.  Let's say that they were allowed to live out their lives in some nice country estate somewhere, and their descendants are happily going about their lives not knowing that they are of royal blood. (Hmmm...I have always thought my Richard carries himself in a very regal manner, I wonder....)
 Speaking of which, did anyone else think about the woman in Canada that they had to contact about the DNA testing?  They did get in touch with her and she told them that her son was living in London, and it was he whose photo you have seen with his cheek being swabbed for the DNA which proved to be a match.  I wonder..how exactly did they contact this woman in Canada?    Could it have been a short letter like the following?

Dear Mrs.  ____,
We have found some ancient bones in a car park in Leicester, England and we very much believe that they might be the remains of Richard III.  We think that you are the descendant and we wish to check your DNA.  Please contact us as soon as possible. 

Sincerely,
_____________                

    P.S.  This might sound something like a scam, but we are
                                                                        British, after all, and we are deadly serious.



 I suppose they had to be absolutely certain and check the DNA but why didn't they just ask me?  I could have told them, just look at that jaw-line, can't you tell that it is a perfect match!  Now, will he be reburied in a cathedral?  Is he a true king or a usurper of the realm?  I wonder...

47 comments:

  1. I think this story is fascinating and I'm following it avidly. Apparently the cities of Leicester and York have started fighting over the right to bury Richard. York was the traditional seat of the House of York, of course, while Leicester was in Lancaster territory. It just happened to be near Bosworth Field, so that's why the dead Richard was buried so unceremoniously there.

    Oh, and Richard now owes the City of Leicester £3,000,000 in parking fees. (Wish I'd come up with that joke!)

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    1. Debra,
      Oh, isn't this just the most amazing story? It will be interesting to see how it all turns out.
      HA HA on the parking fees! Like you, I wish I had thought of it!
      (Just think of the people all the years parking their cars there!)

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  2. Indeed it is an interesting process! Truly fascinating what modern science can do even if you could tell without all that unnecessary checking. Thanks for your regular positive comments on my posts.

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    1. Hey Paul! Glad you like this story and my attempt at humor!!
      Well, thank YOU for being one of my blogging buddies!
      (Or should I say "mates", is that you say in your part of the world?) :-)

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  3. Did they know those bones were going to be there? Why were they digging up the parking lot and have to dig down? Why was Richard III buried in an unmarked grave? There was a lot left out to that news story in the states.

    It's so sad about the princes probably being killed by their uncle to insure his own succession.

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    1. Hey Kay,
      I saw this story on the BBC, if you look it up there, there's a lot of details. Also, I have read several accounts of it in the British newspapers online.
      I would imagine that they must be very careful when they do any kind of digging in such an ancient land.
      Wow, can you think of the worker must have thought when this was confirmed that he had found the bones of a king?!!!

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  4. The best mystery ever written in English was about Richard 111 and the princes. See Josephine Tey's "The Daughter of Time".

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    1. I agree -- a wonderful book. Not only did it make me think differently about Richard III it also made me think differently about the truth (or lack thereof) in history at all levels. As they say, the winners get to write the history books. And Richard lost at Bosworth Field ...

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    2. Hey Betsy and Carol (C. Chickadee)-
      If BOTH of you like this book, then I MUST read it.
      I know for certain that I would like it.
      THANK YOU. :-)

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  5. I also would love to know how they tracked down his nearest descendant. The miracle of DNA.

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    1. Hey Sulky Kitten,
      You could have written a much funnier letter than mine!
      You do make me laugh!!
      I wish I could remember the article about it, the way that they tracked the woman to Canada, it was in a British newspaper, I believe. I find things so interesting, and then, can't remember the details and can't find them again. This is bad when you try to write a post.

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  6. I have been fascinated by this story and I just wonder how they knew to look there or were they digging there and found the skeleton/bones by accident? I guess I need to do some research!

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    1. Yes, it was found by accident just be someone digging up this car park (we call it a parking lot).
      See my comment to Kay above! I remember when the bones were uncovered and the woman who was certain that they were the bones of King Richard.
      Phillipa Langley, that is her name.
      www.richardiii.net
      There, that is the King Richard III Society website and it looks as if they will have updates there.

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  7. I have been following this story; I'm curious to see how it all turns out. I am amazed with all this DNA stuff.

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    1. I KNOW, Martha, isn't it amazing?
      What if they had contacted YOU and told you that were descended from a KIng? Would your husband just shrugged his shoulders and said, "I KNEW I married a Princess"!! :-)

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  8. DNA is amazing. Life is a miracle and it seems science is proving that more every day. Who knows what else might yet be revealed.

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    1. Life IS a miracle and science just backs it up.
      So true!

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  9. As Jiminy Cricket said, when the Blue Fairy first brought Pinocchio to life, "Man, what they can't do these days!"

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    1. Ah, I love Pinoccho!
      You always think of the best comments!! Perfect.

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  10. I thought that was an amazing story, and to my eyes, the descendent had a definite family resemblance to the king's portrait . . .

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    1. Yes, Sara, I remember seeing him but I only saw a side view with his mouth full of a cotton swab...but the jawline looked similar!!

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  11. English Kings, they're all killers.....

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    1. Now, now...at least you got that stone back from underneath that chair from Westminster Abbey.

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  12. That's one of the things which is so fascinating about the British Isles. Even after all these centuries of occupation, look at the stuff that continues to turn up. The Staffordshire hoard, the bones of Richard III ...

    My sister-in-law lives near Southend, and they found a Saxon burial mound there a few years ago, under the grass of Priory Park...they were digging to put in new irrigation pipes, I think.

    It makes you wonder what else is lying out there, just waiting to be found. I can't wait to hear more about Richard III, and hope that the magazine Science, or National Geographic, does a special article about it soon.

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    1. I know, this is facinating stuff, isn't it?
      There is so much that might still be buried, just waiting to be discovered!

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  13. I love watching Time Team so have been fascinated by this story and there was a great documentary on Channel 4 about it earlier this week. As for his final resting place, my two penn'orth is that he should be take his rightful place in Westminster Abbey alongside many of his fellow monarchs.

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    1. It will be interesting to see how this all turns out.
      Westminster Abbey...do they have any room left? :-)

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  14. Kay, This story of King Richard is astounding . How would anyone who was a descendent even know they were. That is so long ago.
    Maybe someone will write a book on it. Enjoy your weekend.xoxo,Susie

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    1. Yes, that woman in Canada must have been shocked.
      I hope they write a book about it, it would be my kind of reading!

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  15. It is such a fascinating story. For you, the jaw was the clincher. For me, the spine.

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    1. Ah yes, the spine was just as they thought King Richard III would be. I have a thing for faces, you see, but now I know that I am just at good at the bones behind the face!

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  16. Had it not been for your blog, Kay, this story would have gone straight past me! Love your draft for the letter :-)

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    1. Oh my dear Meike, don't you just LIVE to read the BBC and the English newspapers? I MUST know what is going on in England!!
      So glad you liked my attempt at humor!! :-)

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  17. Hi Kay

    Ah............. back in the days when the monarch was (broadly) English. And one prepared to die in battle:though far from the last to lead his troops into the fray.

    Kind Regards

    Henry

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    1. Ah Henry,
      I somehow am tempted to break out into the song,
      "He Is An Englishman" by Gilbert and Sullivan...I better not, Richard will think I have gone mad.

      With love from your American friend,

      Kay :-)

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  18. Hello Dear :) .
    Great blog. Interesting post.
    Have a nice weekend.
    Welcome to my blog.
    http://photographyismyexistence.blogspot.com/

    Like me on Facebook. I will be extremely grateful.
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/In-another-light/413836138693856

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Oh thanks for visting me!
      You have a lovely blog with beautiful photos.
      Alas, I do not do Facebook. I can barely manage this blog!!
      Please visit me again though.

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  19. Just to add to this, there was an article in the paper today about the other 'missing' Kings that they're now going to try to find, starting with Alfred!

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    1. Oh yes, let's find everything that we can! So interesting to me!

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  20. Loved this post, Kay!
    I especially loved your humor about the letter to the descendent!
    I have been fascinated with the Princes in the Tower and Richard III since I was a little girl.
    I hope you are having a fun weekend. Aren't you glad that you don't live on Cape Cod!
    Take care!

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    1. Thanks, Louise!
      I mean really, what in the world would you do if you were contacted about this? Wouldn't you think someone was pulling your leg?
      I am so glad not to have been in the Northeast during that horrible snowstorm. I am a native Georgian and know nothing of snow.

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    2. I would suspect my brother was behind the letter!

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    3. Oh, me too! My brother sent me a post card with a view of horses tied to a post, and it was showing JUST THEIR REAR ENDS and the card said, "Thinking of you in Colorado". HA! What would we do without brothers? :-)

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  21. Quite an exciting story that important archaeological finds still happen today. Hmmm, I hadn't heard about a Canadian woman though - I'll have to do a quick Google.

    Also, do you recall where your bluebell photo was taken in East Sussex? I'll be on the hunt for bluebells in a few months :)

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    1. Yes, it IS an exiting story, very much so. I think I read about the DNA story on either BBC or one of the English newspapers, one of of their online versions.
      Oh, that Bluebell Walk was wonderful! That was in Arlington in East Sussex, their website is www.bluebellwalk.co.uk
      Let me know if you go, you might see my in-laws!! xx

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  22. One of the interesting things is that the portraits of them make him look so old and wise but actually he was only in his early thirties when he died, wasn't he? I suppose people aged more quickly in those days but still....

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    1. "Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown".

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