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“Speak, speak, thou fearful guest…”

January 19, 2011

Image by flickr user Gonzo Carles, CC-licensed

This fascinating article from The Economist details the excavation of a Wars-of-the-Roses battlefield in the north of England, and specifically, the mortal hurts dealt to a skeleton dubbed Towton 25. He has a lot to tell us about medieval warfare and weaponry: There aren’t quite twenty trenchéd gashes on his head, but archeologists can determine the order of the head wounds from the way that newer fractures veer toward older ones, and our man had several non-fatal blows from a bladed weapon before the ringer. (The one that cut his face in half, however, was post-mortem. Yikes.) Why wasn’t he wearing a helmet? Read and find out! And this is what we’re trying to evoke when we stage battles….

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