Pathology of the week

Digitised Diseases

This is a skull from an individual who fought at the Battle of Towton. The Battle of Towton took place on Palm Sunday 1461, during the height of the War of the Roses.  It is considered to be one of the bloodiest battles in English history.  A mass grave was excavated in 1996, located approximately one mile from the battle site in Towton, North Yorkshire. The excavations unearthed the nearly complete remains of 37 individuals who had received a variety of peri-mortem weapon injuries, as well as had sustained a series of other ante-mortem (healed) injuries. Their recovery as individuals, rather than as disarticulated bones, from the mass grave makes them a unique resource to study peri-mortem weapon injuries and the physical effects of participation in medieval battle.  Recently, the trauma sustained to this skull was used as a comparison for the injuries inflicted on Richard III.


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