Many of you know, that on this day, now already two years ago, a for my life important person died. So this day, with its joy about Richard Armitage’s birthday, always holds the vivid image of loss for me as well.
What must it have been for Richard Armitage, growing up and always being reminded on his birthday, that King Richard III lost his life on exactly that day?
We nonetheless hope, Richard Armitage celebrates a wonderful birthday and has an exceptional performance of “The Crucible” at the Old Vic.
Happy Birthday, Mr. Armitage!
To celebrate both, the joy and the commemoration, KingRichardArmitage is doing a new Quiz.
All participants till 30 September 2014 (in all time zones around the world) will take part in the drawing.
The winners will be announced here on King Richard III’s birthday, the 2 October 2014.
As last year, the KingRichardArmitage-Champions will be drawn by chance among the most complete and correct Quiz entries.
Prices for the winners are three recently published books about King Richard III and the search in Leicester published by the restlessly and confidently pursuing team of the ‘Looking for King Richard Team':
- “Finding Richard III: The Official Account“, by Annette Carson, Philippa Langley, Dr. Ashdown-Hill (Pb)
- “Richard III: A Small Guide to the Great Debate” by Annette Carson (Pb)
- “The King’s Grave: The Search for Richard III“, by Philippa Langley, Michael Jones (Pb)
So it is worth to win and try your luck. Take your time, browse around and have a look around the KingRichardArmitage website, as for most of the questions the answers can directly be found on the KRA website.
The Quiz is Opened ! – Good Luck !
The date for the intended reinterment of King Richard III in Leicester Cathedral is set:
Thursday, 26th of March 2015
- 22 March 2015 (Sunday)
University of Leicester will transfer King Richard III’s remains into a lead-lined coffin,
and will travel from Leicester to Bosworth on a remembrance journey.
In the evening, King Richard III’s remains will be given into the care of Leicester Cathedral,
and a church service of reception will be held.
- 23 – 25 March 2015
King Richard III’s remains will lie in repose in Leicester Cathedral.
- 26 March 2015
King Richard III will be re-buried in the morning.
- 27 – 28 March 2014
Revealing of the tomb and service to mark the completion of the reinterment.
Attendance at the Cathedral services will be by invitation of the Dean of Leicester, David Monteith.
The reinterment service will be broadcasted live on TV by Channel 4 (Editor John Hays), and will also cover the week’s events, with interviews and presentations of the leading participants in the search and discovery.
His Royal Highness the Duke of Gloucester, current successor of King Richard III in the title as Duke of Gloucester, is to be the Patron of the Leicester Cathedral’s King Richard III Appeal, trying to cover the financial requirements of this ceremony and accompanying events.
More information on the website of Leicester Cathedral:
(Soon will be updated with planned schedule.)
The topic already had gone round in my head, but I had avoided to bring it up so far, as I did not want to thematise another battlefield around King Richard III.
But now, a new petition was brought to my attention, which was started by Victoria Mather to collect support to honour King Richard III:
Richard III Funeral Procession Plans
(Petition can be signed by British citizens only!)
King Richard III’s remains are planned to be sent on a ‘burial procession’ from Bosworth Field to Grey Friars and then his later resting place across the street, at Leicester Cathedral.
The first time King Richard III had been on this route certainly can’t be called a march of triumph, but rather was a tour to show his defeat, shame and to humiliate him.
Now one could say, give it a second try and make it a way of triumph now, but a burial procession is hardly an event to be perceived as especially triumphant.
So it takes no overly active imagination to see the repeat performance of this route of utter degradation of a former King of England as a commemoration of Tudor victory rather than as honouring the newly found King Richard III.
Please take action as you see fit.
Thank you !
Richard III Funeral Procession Plans
(Petition can be signed by British citizens only!)
You now can vote in a poll about the new tomb design for King Richard III’s grave in Leicester Cathedral, if you like the newly revealed design or not:
- Leicester Mercury: Richard III: Final tomb design revealed, by Peter Warzynski (18.06.2014)
(The poll is in the right side bar of the page next to the article.)
For that the poll is posted by a Leicester based newspaper, the Leicester Mercury, the result so far is astonishingly clear.
The team involved in the design of King Richard III’s tomb described the design using the highest praise.
(I must admit, I was wondering a bit, what they would have said when the stone tomb really would have a ‘design’. But perhaps then the design would speak for itself and would not need so many words to explain its not so obvious meaning.)
But I don’t want to withold the explanation of the carved cross design of the tomb from you, which was revealed at the press conference on Monday, 16.06.2014.
- University of Leicester (YouTube): Richard III – The Tomb Design Press Conference by UniversityLeicester (June 17, 2014) – Video of the press conference, where the planned tomb design for King Richard III’s burial in Spring 2014 was revealed:
Trying to imagine the ‘light’-design of the tomb from a practical viewpoint, the question remains with me, when the sun in the East would stand high enough to take effect on the carved tomb and reveal the intended light reflection representing resurrection. But perhaps King Richard III is not meant to …
The Cathedral of Leicester announced the new tomb design for King Richard III today and revealed the approximate time of his burial:
To be honest, I am a bit ‘underwhelmed’ by the new design, because in my opinion now even the previously good parts of the tomb design are gone.
To compare, the Leicester Mercury has the picture of the first draft of the design in this article:
Richard III: New tomb design revealed today, by Peter Warzynski (16.06.2014)
What strange design competition is that to remove all elements people so far liked about the design and leave only the parts people did in major parts not like?
It is a strange method of the Cathedral of Leicester and a really difficult to understand way to estrange even the remaining supporters for Leicester Cathedral.
Perhaps the black stone beneath the tomb is meant to significantly differentiate the tomb design from a white chocolate brick.
But why the circle beneath the tomb, which in my observation had been majorly supported and liked in comments about the first revealed tomb design, now is eliminated as well, is a mystery to me. Except, that it is much easier to lay this rectangular stone floor design and not having to integrate a circle into its midst. Cheaper now, when already such additional expenses have been spent on a new tomb design.
I would not criticise the Cathedral so much for this design, if there had not been a previous tomb design, with well based references to the King’s life and even more convincing, with local materials King Richard III would have known and intended to be done by rare and talented hand-craft artists. In addition, even the payment had been secured for this very first design the Cathedral declined, because they initially had only wanted a stone slab in the floor.
So the necessity to accrue further expenses for this indistinct non-entity of a design for the tomb really is beyond my understanding.
In a way, Leicester Cathedral really must be angry about getting King Richard III or at least with the Richard III Society, whose members had commissioned and intended to finance the very first design.
Or how should that new tomb design be interpreted?
At least, the designer must somehow be angry with the king or does not want to put too much attention to him and his life, to only show minimalistic references.
One reason why I just so strongly don’t like this tomb design is, because I had visited stone pits, where the prepared stones look the way the tomb does.
Raw material prepared for the breaking…
Now, you can surely see an analogy that King Richard III had been broken in the Battle of Bosworth and his broken body had been transferred to Leicester.
But to see him as raw material is a strange interpretation of his life. And to break him with a holy cross is a picture the designer really has to explain to me to make me believe in its religious relevance or sensibility.
To excuse this poor design as 21st century based, I would argue that even the 21st century can do better…
Please feel free to discuss your opinion about the tomb design here. All opinions are welcome!
The one above is just my interpretation of the design, which unfortunately is not a favourable one, though I had tried hard to remain open-minded for the problems of the Cathedral of Leicester.
Shakespearean truth is theatrical truth, so is crunched, condensed and bended to fit the stage.
The same seems to apply for the spine of King Richard III…
New research confirms the side bending scoliosis and the higher right shoulder, though in combination with the found spiral helix form, King Richard III might have appeared normal to observers and rather un-handicapped in his movements.
This rather limits the potential timeframe of the ‘revealing’ of his ‘deformity’ down to his naked exposure in Leicester after his death. And, via the told and re-told versions of a century, enhanced and sensationalised, the stage version of Shakespeare’s King Richard III comes out.
Published report about the scientific reconstruction of King Richard III’s spine:
Research done by the University of Leicester in co-operation with the University of Cambridge, Loughborough University and the University Hospitals of Leicester.
(Copyright of the included material: University of Leicester)
- The Lancet: The scoliosis of Richard III, last Plantagenet King of England: diagnosis and clinical significance,
Interactive model of the spine here:
(Copyright: University of Leicester)
Explanations and interview with Professor Bruno Morgan and Dr Piers Mitchell about their spine reconstruction here via SoundCloud:
Further background articles on the topic:
- Antiquity: ‘The king in the car park’: new light on the death and burial of Richard III in the Grey Friars church, Leicester, in 1485, by Richard Buckley, Mathew Morris, Jo Appleby, Turi King, Deirdre O’Sullivan and Lin Foxhall (Antiquity, Volume: 87, Number: 336, Page: 519–538)
- Timees Literary Supplement (TLS): Richard Crookback, by Sarah Knight and Mary Ann Lund (06.02.2013)
- Scoliosis Research Society: Idiopathic Scoliosis
We will try to cover the topic in the article news-stream of KRA as usual.
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With King Richard III, the good and the bad always are so close together.
For Leicester to win the court battle while losing money, much more money than the initial dig for King Richard III had cost, certainly is a truth fully in the tradition of King Richard III’s reign.
- Leicester Mercury: Richard III: High Court battle leaves winners with £250,000 costs, by Peter Warzynski (29.05.2014)
Videos by the University of Leicester about the revelation of the results from the High Court (23.05.2014):
- University of Leicester (YouTube): Richard III – The Judicial Review Decision, UniversityLeicester YouTube Channel (26.05.2014)
- University of Leicester (YouTube): Richard III – The Judicial Review Decision – Press Conference, UniversityLeicester YouTube Channel (25.05.2014)
The results of the High Court hearing in London are in!
The burial license granted to the UoL will not be revoked, allowing now that the started burial procedures in Leicester can continue and a timely burial in Leicester Cathedral can be expected.
High Court judgment: Plantagenet Alliance v Leicester City Council and others. (RIchard III burial) http://t.co/ZhDpD5eQRT
— Judicial Office (@JudiciaryUK) May 23, 2014
First of all, congratulations to Mark Selby, the ‘Jester from Leicester’.
I know, he has nothing to do with King Richard III’s court, though a good jester surely could have been of value there. But I am quite sure King Richard III might have enjoyed the dramatic finale in the Snooker World Championship as well. When two of my favourite Snooker players are in the final competition, unfortunately only one of them can win. Great match, great players, worthy finale!
Now to another delicacy for all readers from and visiting London…
♛ Richard III in London ♛
is an ambitious theatre company from London, founded in 2010.
Their newest production, Shakespeare’s Richard III, by director Rae McKen uses authentic historical costume, designed by Fraz Roughton.
The pictures from the production already shared on Facebook give an interesting glimps of the time and how King Richard III and his comtemporaries might have looked like.
Facebook Foto-Album (Also visible without Facebook account.)
Till 18th of May 2014: in The Cockpit, London
From Friday 20th – Sunday 22nd of June 2014: in the Greenwich Theatre, London
Custom Practice (on Facebook)
Custom Practice (Richard III – website)
TheOneRing.net – Interview by Greendragon
Interviewed by GreenDragon for TheOneRing.net (14.04.2014) about his role as Thorin Oakenshield in Sir Peter Jacksons record breaking production “The Hobbit”, Richard Armitage mentions King Richard III again.
As glad as I am that even for Tolkien fans King Richard III is worth a question, I must admit, I wonder if the late battles around King Richard III brought this change and caused this very distancing statement about Mr. Armitage’s interest in telling the (hi)story of King Richard III.
GreenDragon: One last thing I’m interested to ask you about – I keep reading about your fascination with Richard III, and that you have interest in making a film about him. I just wondered what truth there is in any of that?
It was an idea that I had a while back. But my interest in it is really a hobby, of reading biographies, and I was once working with a script writer on something. I don’t know whether a documentary would be of interest… it’s difficult, finding something which is going to be commercially interesting, and for an audience – I don’t know how many people would be that excited about him… My interest in him doesn’t necessarily have to manifest itself in a piece of work. Even if it’s me going back on stage and playing him; it’s purely a hobby for me.
GreenDragon: It’s a fascinating topic – particularly when you consider how Shakespeare has painted him into one particular corner…
Yeah, I mean Shakespeare really created a bit of a pantomime and put him at the centre of it. It’s a brilliant thriller, but I don’t know how biased Shakespeare was… Well, I do know how biased he was, because he was writing for a Tudor monarch! But I think there’s a tale to tell. I think the BBC maybe are investigating doing a project about Richard, but we’ll see. I think there’s always room for a new take on it; and there’s plenty of literature out there. The Daughter of Time [Josephine Tey] is such an interesting book, and that would be worth exploring.