Photos: The Search for Alfred the Great's Grave

Alfred the Great

(Image credit: Joe Low)

Archaeologists have mounted a search to find the lost remains of Alfred the Great, who ruled England from 871 until his death in 899.

Skeletal Clue

(Image credit: University of Winchester)

In January 2013, scholars from the University of Winchester announced that they found part of a right pelvis bone of an older adult male in museum storage that might belong to Alfred.

Hyde Abbey

(Image credit: University of Winchester)

The pelvis bone was originally excavated in the 1990s at Hyde Abbey, a monastery where Alfred was once believed to be buried.

Dead Ends

(Image credit: University of Winchester)

Before the researchers found the bone, they ran into some dead ends. Some historical accounts suggested that Alfred's remains might be found in an unmarked grave at Saint Bartholomew’s Church in Winchester.


(Image credit: University of Winchester)

After excavating the grave at Saint Bartholomew's, the team found the skeletons of at least six individuals (including at least five skulls).

No Match for a King

(Image credit: University of Winchester)

None of these skeletons were a match with Alfred. All of them dated between 1100 and 1500, much later than the monarch's reign.

Megan Gannon
Live Science Contributor
Megan has been writing for Live Science and since 2012. Her interests range from archaeology to space exploration, and she has a bachelor's degree in English and art history from New York University. Megan spent two years as a reporter on the national desk at NewsCore. She has watched dinosaur auctions, witnessed rocket launches, licked ancient pottery sherds in Cyprus and flown in zero gravity. Follow her on Twitter and Google+.