Thursday, 13 September 2012

Dem Bones, Dem Bones, Dem Dry Bones…

DSCF4579Oooh! It’s all getting Very Exciting round here. I was fascinated by yesterday’s live press conference from the Richard III dig site – check out what they said here. The key thing is that they have found the bones of someone who had scoliosis – i.e. he would have probably walked with one shoulder higher than the other, and been termed a ‘hunchback’ or ‘crookback’
The team are being cautious about what they are saying – and insist that DNA tests etc. must be carried out next before they can make any claims about whose bones they have dug up.
I queued [along with hundreds of others] on Saturday morning in order to see the dig. I was extremely impressed by the way the crowds were managed – we were taken round in groups of 30, each group having an archaeologist acting as guide, to point out what we needed to see and answer our questions.
Trench Two – showing what are assumed to be the foundations of cloister walls – and the pattern of diamond shaped floor tiles
Trench One – more walls – and behind is what was formerly part of Leicester Grammar School [and before that this building was the Alderman Newton School] The medieval church was believed to be somewhere around here – Trench Three is the other side of this wall
Here you can see some of the stonework which has been uncovered – believed to be part of the window tracery from the Greyfriars Abbey.
For many years this site was a garden, which has helped to preserve it from being built upon [which would have made the whole excavation process more complex]

More of the bits and pieces they have excavated. Well done to all of those involved in the project - and I do hope that they are Richard’s bones!
There is more information here. The team have employed Emma Viecili, a comics artist to illustrate the dig – here’s one of her pieces.
emmaviecel image
update - check out this link on the BBC


  1. It is very exciting, and we follow it in the newspaper reports. Doesn't it make you wonder what other national treasures are buried under carparks and concrete?

  2. I'm finding it all fascinating Angela and really hope it turns out to be him.

  3. I'd not heard about this dig--how fascinating! I'd love to see it.


  4. I wondered about a 'decent' buial and read that Leicester cathedral were appoached. The article didn't say if that is where the remains would finally be placed.
    SO exciting that you got to see the dig!
    Jane x

    1. They are suggesting that if it IS him, as he has been buried just across from the road from the Cathedral for 400 years, and there IS a plaque in there already, it seems the most appropriate place to put him. Yes is WAS exciting to see the dig [especially if it ends up being concreted over again afterwards]

  5. How fascinating, especially since you are so close to the action. I have a spare ticket to go and see Neil Oliver at our local book festival in November if you want to come???!!He has a brilliant series just started about the Vikings.

    1. Sadly I think November is going to be too busy for jaunts to Scotland - but thanks for the kind offer!

  6. How exciting and on your own doorstep too.
    Love from Mum

  7. I've been following this story over here. How exciting!

  8. How exciting. I hope it is Richard! I look forward to hearing more. And how interesting too to be able to visit the archaeological site

  9. I was reading about this the other day, fascinating and exciting.

  10. I heard it on the radio yesterday, and thought of you straight away, so thanks for sharing the story of your visit - great to have our very own blog reporter 'on the ground, as it were!

  11. This is so suspenseful and riveting. I too hope it's Richard III. How exciting to see the dig! The DNA testing sounds quite intriguing....


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