Digging for Richard III : How Archaeology Found the King, Hardback Book

Digging for Richard III : How Archaeology Found the King Hardback

3 out of 5 (1 rating)


The events of Richard IIIs reign and his death in 1485 at the Battle of Bosworth are known worldwide through Shakespeares most performed, filmed and translated history play.

Digging for Richard III is the page-turning story of how his grave was found, the people behind the discovery and what it tells us.

It is the first complete narrative of a project that blended passion, science, luck and detection.

Told by a noted archaeologist with access to all the parties involved, it follows the quest from an idea born in an Edinburgh bookshop to the day, fourteen years later, when two archaeologists carefully raised the bones from a car park in Leicester, and the scientific studies that resulted.

The vivid tale of a king, his demise and now his rediscovery, this is also an insiders gripping account of how modern archaeology really works, of how clues meticulously assembled and forensically examined are pieced together to create a narrative worthy of the finest detective fiction.


  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 208 pages, Illustrations
  • Publisher: Thames & Hudson Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Medieval European archaeology
  • ISBN: 9780500252000

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I'd like to give this a 3.5, but I'll go with three. The story is amazing and I had a hard time putting git down. I always kind of want my non-fiction to read like fiction...so it's probably not fair to wish this book had kept more of a mystery to what was going to happen (plus, I knew what was going to happen anyway, so why am I griping about heavy-handed "foreshadowing," or whatever you call it when it's not fiction? General perversity...). The author also made much of a few things being "related," when it was really just coincidence. I can't remember specifics, but it was stuff on the order of lots of people being involved all named Richard, or certain things happening a similar distance apart, etc. The only coincidence that really appeared to be worth noting was that digging began on the anniversary of Richard III's burial. So all the other things kind of seemed like the author was really straining - it was jarring to come across those kind of references.