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King Richard III: Death By 11 Injuries

According to a recent forensic analysis published in the Lancer, King Richard III suffered almost a dozen injuries prior to his death. The English king was struck down at the Battle of Bosworth on August 22, 1485. He was more than likely killed by one blow to the pelvis and two hits to the head.


King Richard III/Image: OhNoTheyDidnt

The forensic researchers from the University of Leicester had a chance to study his remains after the remains were discovered in under a car park in Leicester in Leicester, England two years ago. They employed new procedures and equipment on his 500+-year-old skeleton to learn the specifics of his various injuries and the medieval weapons used to kill Richard.

The investigative team said that three of the blows “had the potential to cause death quickly”. Study author and professor of materials engineering Sarah Hainsworth stated: “Richard’s injuries represent a sustained attack or an attack by several assailants with weapons from the later medieval period.”

She continued: “Wounds to the skull suggest he was not wearing a helmet, and the absence of defensive wounds on his arms and hands indicate he was still armored at the time of his death.” Furthermore, they note that the postcranial injuries, including the pelvic injury, could have been inflicted after Richard was actually dead because had he been alive his armor would have protected him.


The remains/Image: KirstenMillerBooks

A co-worker from the East Midlands pathology unit, Guy Rutty, from the East Midlands pathology unit, added: that the two fatal skull injuries were probably “caused by a sword, a staff weapon such as bill or halberd or possibly the pointed tip of some other edged weapon.

Rutty concluded: “Richard’s head injuries are consistent with some near-contemporary accounts of the battle, which suggest Richard abandoned his horse after it became stuck in a mire and was killed while fighting his enemies.” Richard’s remains will be interred at Leicester Cathedral in March.

King Richard III: Death By 11 Injuries

About Will Phoenix

W. Scott Phoenix, B.A., B.S. was born in Hawaii, raised in Pennsylvania and resides in California. He has been a published writer since 1978. His work has appeared (under various names) in numerous places in print and online including Examiner.com. He is a single parent of three children and has also worked as an actor, singer and teacher. He has been employed by such publications as the Daily Collegian and the Los Angeles Times.