In the last three years of his life, King Richard III consumed up to three liters of alcohol per day and feasted on swan, egret and heron, analysis of the monarch's teeth and bones has revealed.
Researchers from the British Geological Survey and the University of Leicester examined changes in chemistry in the bones of the last Plantagenet king, whose remains were found buried beneath a parking lot in the English city of Leicester in 2012.
"We applied multi-element isotope techniques to reconstruct a full life history," Angela Lamb, isotope geochemist at the British Geological Survey, Richard Buckley from the University of Leicester Archaeological Services, and colleagues wrote in the latest issue of the Journal of Archaeological Science.
Richard III Clouded by Fiction: A History
Born in Northamptonshire in 1452, Richard became King of England in 1483 at the age of 30, ruling for just two years and two months.
The king, depicted by William Shakespeare as a bloodthirsty usurper, was killed in 1485 in the Battle of Bosworth, which was the last act of the decades-long fight over the throne known as War of the Roses. He was defeated by Henry Tudor, who became King Henry VII.