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February 4, 2013

It's Him!

Skull of King Richard III CREDIT: University of Leicester
University of Leicester researchers say tests on a  skeleton unearthed last year under a parking lot in Leicester prove beyond reasonable doubt that it is King Richard III who died at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485, and whose remains have been missing for centuries.

And it was Canadian DNA that provided the proof. Geneticist Turi King said Michael Ibsen, a Canadian carpenter, share with the skeleton a rare strain of mitochondrial DNA.

Ibsen and a cousin who did not wish to be named, both provided DNA samples for comparison. They are proven descendants of King Richard's older sister Anne.

It's quite fascinating to think that DNA was a major factor in solving this mystery. Wouldn't it be great if the DNA companies could get the DNA results to compare the DNA of those of us who have been tested? Maybe there are more of us related to King Richard or his sister.

I've had my DNA tested through Family Tree DNA and have a sample ready to mail off to 23andMe. Have you had your DNA tested yet? You're not guaranteed to find a royal connection or even a distant cousin who can provide you with your family tree back dozens of generations but it's very interesting! 

Read more: University of Leicester

1 comment:

Linda Huesca Tully said...

This has been a fascinating piece of history to follow. We visited Leicester 18 months ago and went to nearby Bosworth Field to watch the reenactment of the Battle of Bosworth, in which Richard III met his death at the hands of Henry Tudor's Lancastrians.

His (and his family's) descendants must be happy to have closure on this. How exciting that it was made possible by a simple DNA test!