The King in the Carpark

"Now is the Winter of our Discontent made Glorious Summer by this son of York." Thus begins William Shakespeare's historical tragedy of the villainous hunchback Richard, Duke of Gloucester who murdered his way to the English throne to become Richard III in 1483. Two years later his nemesis, Henry Tudor defeated Richard at the Battle of Bosworth Field. Richard's mutilated body was taken to the nearby city of Leicester and, buried without ceremony, his remains were soon lost.

In 2012 an archaeological excavation on the site of a former priory, now a city centre carpark, located a skeleton with scoliosis and fatal battle wounds. Mitochondrial DNA recovered from the skeleton matched exactly the sequence of Joy Ibsen a living matrilineal descendant of Richard sixteen generations removed and traced through his sister, Anne of York. Thus the identity of the remains of King Richard III was confirmed and the remains were laid to rest in Leicester Cathedral in 2015.