Friday, 16 December 2011
Researchers puzzled as grave did not hold remains of medieval Swedish king
Earlier this year, researchers in Sweden excavated what they believe was the tomb of King Magnus Ladulås (1240-1290) at Riddarholmen Church in Stockholm, hoping to learn more about the medieval Swedish ruler and his family. But DNA tests have revealed that the bodies of nine people buried in the tomb actually died sometime between 1430 and 1520.
Records show that the King Magnus wished to have his remains buried in the church, and in 1573 the Swedish King, Johan III erected a sarcophagus with an effigy on top of what he believed was the location of the tomb.
The researchers said on their blog: “It is a fantastic story that is rolled up in front of our eyes. Johan II had the impressive tomb put up above the wrong grave and this historical hoax has been unchallenged for 400 years! On good grounds we believe instead that Magnus Ladulås was placed in the southern tomb in front of the choir, i.e. the tomb in which King Karl Knutsson placed himself in the 15th century. With the knowledge we have today it is obvious that we have only done half the job. In order to make further progress in this project we need to open also the southern part of the choir-tombs (the tomb of Karl Knutsson) and investigate all individuals there.”
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