Thursday, 26 March 2015

Richard III DNA tests uncover evidence of further royal scandal

Latest genetic tests reveal another break in the male line, potentially undermining the legitimacy of the entire House of Plantagenet


When scientists revealed last year that an adulterous affair had apparently broken the male line in Richard III’s family tree, they vowed to investigate further.
But rather than clear up the mystery, their latest genetic tests have uncovered evidence of another royal sex scandal. This time, the indiscretion could potentially undermine the legitimacy of the entire House of Plantagenet.
The skeleton of Richard III, the last Plantagenet king, was discovered under a car park in Leicester in 2012. His identity was confirmed through his mitochondrial DNA, passed down through the maternal line from his sister to two relatives alive today.
But further DNA tests soon uncovered evidence of a family secret. It emerged when researchers at Leicester University compared the Y chromosomes of Richard III and five anonymous male relatives of Henry Somerset (1744-1803), who claim descent from Edward III, the great great grandfather of Richard III.
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Monday, 23 March 2015

Richard III returns to Bosworth Field for final time


The last time Richard III was at Bosworth Field the outcome proved less than satisfactory for the King.
The battle, which was the last significant skirmish in the War of the Roses, saw Richard not only lose the English throne but also his life.
According to contemporaneous accounts, the dead monarch was stripped naked, slung over a horse and led back to Leicester, his skull banging against Bow Bridge as it was brought into the city. He was the last English king to die in battle.
Today Richard will have a more dignified entrance to Leicester when his body returns in ceremony within a custom-made coffin, borne on a gun carriage.
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Monday, 23 February 2015

Medieval battle site yields UK’s oldest cannon ball


A lead ball found at a medieval battle site could be the oldest surviving cannonball in England, an expert says. 


The lead cannon ball is believed to have bounced at least twice and possibly hit a tree  [Credit: Northampton Battlefield Society] 

The damaged ball was found at the site of the Battle of Northampton fought during the War of the Roses. 

Medieval artillery expert Dr Glenn Foard said: "It is highly likely the projectile was fired during the battle [10 July 1460]." 

It will be revealed to the public at a Northampton hotel in Eagle Drive close to the battlefield on Thursday night.

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New film footage reveals potential 'killer blow' to King Richard III


New film footage revealing for the first time details of the potential killer blow that claimed the life of King Richard III has been released by the University of Leicester.
The sequence - showing the dramatic injury to the base of the skull as well as the inside of the top of the skull - is part of a package of films charting the scientific and archaeological investigations led by the project team from the University of Leicester.
It is among 26 sequences taken by University video producer Carl Vivian who is chronicling the key events in the Discovery, Science and Reburial of the last Plantagenet king. These sequences are accessible to the media by contacting Carl Vivian (details below).
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Viarmes retrouve son château médiéval


Dans le cadre de l'aménagement de la place de la mairie de Viarmes, une fouille archéologique a été prescrite en 2013. Les fouilles ont  permis de mieux comprendre  l'origine du centre ancien de Viarmes en révélant les vestiges oubliés d'un château médiéval et d'un manoir seigneurial détruit au XIVe siècle. 

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Sunday, 18 January 2015

Mysterious medieval fortifications buried in Poland detected with advanced imaging technology


Archaeologists have discovered evidence of unknown medieval fortifications which may indicate the presence of Hussite clashes near a small village in Poland.
Discovered buried in wooded foothills near the village of Bieździadka in south-eastern Poland, the site was examined by archaeologists Joanna Pilszyk and Piotr Szmyd. Based on the report fromScience and Scholarship in Poland (PAP), the fortifications were discovered underground using sophisticated laser detection and aerial mapping.
The fort is to have sat on top of a plateau with steep sides, the sheer slope and height of over two meters (6.5 feet) naturally protecting the stronghold. Moats were believed to surround the site, and high fences or palisades are likely to have run along the perimeter. The age of the fort is not known, but researchers say it was probably built during the Middle Ages.
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Friday, 16 January 2015

"Extremely lucky" archaeologists find evidence of 15th century settlement near Northern Irish castle


Scientific dating leads archaeologists to "extremely exciting" early settlement near ruined 13th century castle


A post-excavation shot of the late 15th or early 16th century structure found near Dunluce Castle, showing the doorway in the corner
© DOE/NIEA

Archaeologists searching for a lost 17th century town say the remains of a fireplace, found in a field near a medieval Irish coastal castle, was part of a previously unknown settlement which could have been established 200 years earlier.

Radiocarbon dating from the clay floor of a structure, discovered by the Northern Ireland Environment Agency, suggests an earlier community could have lived in Dunluce during the late 15th and 16th centuries.

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