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3-D Printed Copy of Richard III’s Skeleton Haunts Reburial Site

Image: BRITAIN-ROYALS-HISTORY-RICHARD III
Visitors examine a replica of the skeleton of King Richard III, created using 3D printing, displayed in the new visitor's centre on the site where his remains were discovered, in Leicester, central England, on July 24. The centre tells the story of his rise to power, his death in battle and the discovery of his bones, as well as raising questions on how his disability should be portrayed in theatre and film. Exhibits include a remarkably detailed facial reconstruction, and a replica of Richards skeleton that clearly shows his curved spine, as well as his battle injuries, including the fatal blow. Opening on July 26, 2014, the centre hopes to attract up to 100,000 visitors in it's first year. LEON NEAL / AFP - Getty Images

The bones of King Richard III may be going back to a tomb near Leicester, England, but curious tourists can still see the former monarch's skeleton at the newly built visitor's center... in 3-D printed form. Richard's unmarked grave, dug five centuries ago, was rediscovered by accident under a Leicester car park in September of 2012, and numerous controversies have emerged relating to the handling and eventual housing of the remains. In the meantime, millions have been poured into a nearby center commemorating Richard's life and death.

Image: BRITAIN-ROYALS-HISTORY-RICHARD III
A suit of armour is displayed near to a 3D printed reconstruction of the skeleton of King Richard III in the new visitor's centre on the site where his remains were discovered, in Leicester, central England, on July 24. LEON NEAL / AFP - Getty Images

Among the exhibits is a 3-D printed skeleton that is a precise replica of the original, down to the damage sustained in the Battle of Bosworth Field, where Richard died (reportedly from a halberd strike during an attempt to kill the rebel leader, Henry Tudor). The real skeleton was carefully examined and scanned in order to determine not just his cause of death but also his health during life. Accordingly, the printed skeleton will also reflect the severe scoliosis from which he suffered. The King Richard III Visitor Centre is set to open this weekend.

Richard III found … in a parking lot 2:13

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— Devin Coldewey, NBC News