The King in the Car Park….

Purchased in a vintage shop a few years ago, this sweet lace garment came with an intriguing label made from an old Players cigarette card featuring Richard lll.

Today, the mortal remains of this controversial King have been interned on consecrated ground in Leicester Cathedral in the county of my birth. Thousands of people from all over the world have travelled to accord the King the dignity and honour denied him in death. Slaughtered at Bosworth Field, less than 10 miles from where I grew up and 500 years after the Wars of the Roses, his coffin was scattered with soil from Fotheringhay Castle, where the King was born, Middleham Castle in Yorkshire where he grew up, and Bosworth field where he died.

The body of the last King of England to have died in battle and whose bones were discovered underneath a car park in Leicester, has finally been laid to rest.

King Richard lll

1483-1485

25 thoughts on “The King in the Car Park….

  1. I find this fascinating, Karen.
    How interesting that all of this happened near to where you live.

    I have been following Richard’s story since reading Jean Plaidy’s The Sun in Splendour
    Recently, I was also interested to learn that his Canadian descendant held the DNA key to the puzzle as to whether the bones found were Richard’s. Probably the most maligned of English kings, he at least had a Richard 111 society who always believed in his innocence (or that he was maligned).

    My friends must think I’m nuts: that a Jamaican women in this era could care so much about what happened to an English king of centuries before. But the probable injustice of it bugged me!

    • It has been such a truly fascinating journey Cynthia and you are right, his descendent, Michael Ibsen’s DNA was a perfect match.
      The mitochondrial DNA tested was passed along the female line. Michael, who has no children, and his brother both have it. But their sister, who also has no children, is the only one capable of passing it on. So, once she dies, it’s gone. So all this happened just in time.
      I suppose we will never know if he had the Princes in the tower killed or not, but history is often written down by those in power and they often do not tell the truth.
      The burial service was televised this morning. The coffin was made and carved by Michael Ibsen. The actor Benedict Cumberpatch read a poem written by the poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, which was beautiful.
      I am so touched that you have so much empathy for Richard. I do not live in the Midlands now, but his story has always resonated with me and I am glad that thanks to the efforts of the Richard 111 society that he is now laid to rest.

      • I think it’s the power of books to move us to empathy. My family will tell you that Richard haunted me the summer I read those two books, and I talked about him incessantly. The possibility that we had all denounced someone who, the historical facts reveal was a great brother and husband, despite his struggles, and appears to have been a good king — that was something those books revealed.

      • You might want to visit the Richard iii Society website http://www.richardiii.net
        They believe that there is more to be discovered. You can also see the amazing embroidered pall which Jacquie Binns made for the coffin.
        It is interesting that his story so struck a cord with you and I am pleased that you too are keen to stand firm against injustice.

      • Yes, thanks, Karen, I’m okay. It’s very cold and nasty weather outside, but still I’m riding my bike. Went to the centre today to buy some silver for some new jewellery to do. Kind regards Mitza

      • Brilliant! How exciting! More silver for new jewellery! I cant wait to see what you do.
        Well done for riding your bike in nasty weather. I too walk everyday- a walk of 6 miles, come rain or shine. It makes me feel so alive. x

      • Wonderful that you walk 6 miles every day. The only thing I hate is taking a walk (only on fleamarkets!). That’s why I go by bike, and by the way, when I was young I had a wonderful motorbike, a Harley Davidson! x

      • You can walk for MILES at flea markets! I love motorbikes and have never been lucky enough to go out with anyone who had one. I could never have one because if I dropped it I would never be able to pick it up again!
        I can’t believe you had a H.D! Good to think of Mitza, the wild child! x

      • Yes, that Harley D. was really very heavy and I could never pick it up. But I had 2 accidents and sold it later. But I was one of the first women in Hamburg to have one (only tough biker had one). Went to my job with it in a red leather dress and there was nearly a crowd of people looking at me, which I don’t like at all. Was a funny time anyway. Wish I would be young again! Now I only have a Volvo -car, hehe. x

    • It all took place in the Midlands where I was born. But his story has all has been so brought to life with the discovery of his bones. I have been so excited by it, but many consider it all a waste of money for a man who died 500 years ago. I am so pleased that Richard has finally been given a proper resting place. He deserved more than being buried beneath a car park.

    • Thanks Johanna. It has been very exciting and I don’t think I have ever been as interested in history as I am now. It has brought it alive for me. x

  2. ‘King Richard, late mercifully reigning over us, was through great treason . . . piteously slain and murdered, to the great heaviness of this city,’ reported the York mayor’s serjeant of the mace a day after Richard’s death at the Battle of Bosworth on August 22, 1485.
    Read also Josephine Tey’s “The Daughter of Time”.

  3. Hmmm . Yes. Though maybe the Wars of the Roses Part III could have been mitigated if York had been included, somehow.

  4. fascinating:-) You live with a rich history:-) Do you ever find anything in the garden when you dig?:-) We had Native American Villages all around where we live-Black Hawk Road- Museum down the road- The Sauk Indians wintered here and some people have to watch what they dig up!One man had to call and have it checked out + it was historical pertaining to the village they had here along the river:-)

  5. I’ve been fascinated with this whole story, too! Another commenter mentioned it but, if you haven’t read Josephine Tey’s, “Daughter of Time,” go find yourself a copy! It’s a classic in the mystery genre and provides all kinds of information and insight.

    • Thanks Kerry. I have to confess to being hopelessly addicted to everything associated with Richard iii now. I studied history at school but it just never came alive for me in the way this has. I will certainly get hold of the book. Thank you.

  6. I’ve also been following this story and am surprised at how pleased I am Richard has now been found and accorded a proper burial. Like others, my view of him was shaped by a novel – Josephine Tey’s ‘The Daughter of Time’ – which I read as a kid. May he finally rest in peace.

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