The fate of the remains of Simon de Montfort, earl of Leicester, has long been a mystery. Since his death at the Battle of Evesham in 1265, one foot of the dismembered corpse has been confidently traced to Alnwick abbey in Northumberland, from where it disappeared, probably at the Reformation. A skull displayed in the Almonry Museum and Heritage Centre in Evesham may belong to a member of the Montfort family. Stories abound, of secret tunnels under the River Avon, and of remains collected by Montfort’s widow and interred in St Mary’s abbey, Kenilworth. In this book David Cox reviews the evidence for an alternative last resting place of Earl Simon’s bones, and outlines the circumstances under which they might be recovered and identified.
Dr David Cox, FSA, is the author of ‘The Battle of Evesham: A New Account’ (1988; 2nd edition 2019) and ‘The Church and Vale of Evesham 700-1215: Lordship, Landscape and Prayer’ (2015). He is a former editor of the Victoria History of Shropshire.
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