Share

Scientists Find Mystery Coffin at Richard III Site

July 30, 2013
King Richard III
King Richard III

Hulton Archive/Getty Images

LONDON -- A team of archaeologists said Monday it has unearthed an unusual coffin-within-a-coffin in the central England parking lot where it found the skeleton of King Richard III, and that they hope to identify the remains within.

University of Leicester scientists have been digging at the Grey Friars site in Leicester after finding the body of Richard there in September. He died nearby in 1485 at the Battle of Bosworth Field.

(MORE: Melted Lake Discovered Near the North Pole)

The team said it had discovered a fully intact medieval stone coffin during a dig in September but wasn't able to investigate it further at the time. When it was opened this week, the team said, it found a lead coffin within it, one likely to contain a "high status" individual.

Scientists think the lead coffin - which has a hole through which the deceased's feet can be seen - could contain one of the friary's founders, a medieval monk, or the remains of a 14th-century medieval knight, Sir William Moton.

The archaeologists say that tests must be carried out to determine how to open the lead coffin without damaging the remains.

The University of Leicester's Matthew Morris said no one on the team had ever seen a lead coffin within a stone coffin before.

"It was as exciting as finding Richard III," he said in a statement. "We still don't know who is inside - so there is still a question mark over it."

MORE: Volcanoes Seen From Space

The Alps may be more famous, but the Pyrenees have been around much longer: tens of millions of years longer, in fact. These mountains formed between 100 and 150 million years ago when the landmass that Spain occupies pushed into the one that France occupies. (NASA)


Featured Blogs

Vance Forms in the Eastern Pacific; the Atlantic Goes Quiet

By Dr. Jeff Masters
October 31, 2014

Tropical Storm Vance formed in the Eastern Pacific on Thursday afternoon. The storm's heaviest rains will remain well offshore from Mexico through Sunday, but Vance is expected to make landfall in Mainland Mexico northwest of Puerto Vallarta on Tuesday night. Vance's moisture will likely bring heavy rain to Texas on Wednesday.

September 2014 Global Weather Extremes Summary

By Christopher C. Burt
October 22, 2014

September was globally the warmest such on record according to NASA and NOAA. Deadly flooding affected the Kashmir region of India and Pakistan as well as in southern France, China, and Serbia. Record heat occurred in Jakarta, Indonesia and south-central Canada. It was the driest September on record for the U.K.

Live Blog: Tracking Hurricane Arthur as it Approaches North Carolina Coast

By Shaun Tanner
July 3, 2014

This is a live blog set up to provide the latest coverage on Hurricane Arthur as it threatens the North Carolina Coast. Check back often to see what the latest is with Arthur. The most recent updates are at the top.

Tropical Terminology

By Stu Ostro
June 30, 2014

Here is some basic, fundamental terminology related to tropical cyclones. Rather than a comprehensive and/or technical glossary, this represents the essence of the meaning & importance of some key, frequently used terms.

2013-14 - An Interesting Winter From A to Z

By Tom Niziol
May 15, 2014

It was a very interesting winter across a good part of the nation from the Rockies through the Plains to the Northeast. Let's break down the most significant winter storms on a month by month basis.

What the 5th IPCC Assessment Doesn't Include

By Angela Fritz
September 27, 2013

Melting permafrost has the potential to release an additional 1.5 trillion tons of carbon into the atmosphere, and could increase our global average temperature by 1.5°F in addition to our day-to-day human emissions. However, this effect is not included in the IPCC report issued Friday morning, which means the estimates of how Earth's climate will change are likely on the conservative side.