Archaeology Magazine

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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The Twenty-First Century Autopsy of Richard III

King Richard III of England was killed in August 1485 during the Battle of Bosworth Field, the clash that ended the War of the Roses. He was thought to have been buried beneath Greyfriars, a now demolished monastery in Leicester, England. Last year, archaeologists recovered a skeleton from the site that dated to the correct time period and exhibited scoliosis, a curvature of the spine known to afflict Richard. DNA analysis has now confirmed that the bones belong to the long dead monarch. These images of his bones open a window into the life and grisly death of the last English king to die in combat. To read more about the quest to find his remains, see "The Rehabilitation of Richard III," January/February 2013.  —Eric A. Powell