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

Earth Has its Warmest Summer and August on Record

By Dr. Jeff Masters
September 18, 2014

August 2014 and the summer of 2014 were Earth's warmest since records began in 1880. Global ocean temperatures during August 2014 were the warmest on record, and the 0.65°C (1.17°F) ocean temperature anomaly was the highest ever measured, beating the record set just two months previously in June 2014. The first eight months of 2014 (January–August) were the third warmest such period on record for the globe.

August 2014 Global Weather Extremes Summary

By Christopher C. Burt
September 12, 2014

August featured a record heat wave in the Baltics and Belarus, record cold in Northern Ireland, extreme rainfall events along the U.S. East Coast and in Michigan. Deadly flooding in Nepal and India killed at least 200 and Typhoon Halong hit Japan. A rare tropical storm struck the Big Island of Hawaii. Perth, Australia had its warmest August on record while Darwin measured its coldest August temperature on record.

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.