UK News Scottish soldiers’ remains to be reburied in 17th century service

15:15  17 may  2018
15:15  17 may  2018 Source:   pressassociation.com

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Renew give a gift back issues e-update customer service . DURHAM, ENGLAND—The remains of 1,700 soldiers who were captured by Oliver Cromwell’s forces in 1650 at the Battle of Dunbar will be reinterred in a cemetery in Durham, near the mass grave where the bones

Oliver Cromwell led thousands of Scottish soldiers into the English Civil War over 350 years ago. Some soldiers were taken prisoner and were eventually buried in mass graves after their death. All of the remains that have been found will be reburied in a cemetery located near Durham University.

Battle of Dunbar prisoners remains (Richard Rayner/Durham University) © Provided by The Press Association Battle of Dunbar prisoners remains

The remains of 17th century Scottish prisoners of war will be reburied after skeletons were discovered during building work at Durham University.

Extensive tests were carried out after they were found five years ago and studies showed they had been held captive in the then empty Durham Cathedral following the 1650 Battle of Dunbar.

A simple graveside ceremony reflective of the 17th century will be held on Friday at Elvet Hill Road Cemetery, less than a mile from where they were found.

During the reburial service people will have the opportunity to scatter a handful of Scottish soil into the grave, in acknowledgement of the origins of many of the soldiers. 

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Scientific tests revealed that human remains found in mass graves are those of 17 th - century Scottish soldiers . Once research on the remains is complete, the soldiers will be reburied in a nearby cemetery in Durham, university officials announced in late August.

Skeletons are remains of 17 th Century Scottish soldiers captured at Battle of Dunbar. Findings from a team of experts from Archaeological Services Durham University and the Department of The soldiers remains will be reburied in Durham City and a plaque will be placed near to the site where

Professor Chris Gerrard, of Durham University’s Department of Archaeology, said: “It has been a privilege to research these soldiers and, having learnt so much from their remains, it was important to us to lay them to rest with respect and dignity. 

“Today we are able to give these men the burial they were denied when they died almost 400 years ago.”

The reburial service has been designed by Durham Cathedral, and representatives from the Church of Scotland and the Scottish Episcopal Church were invited to comment, to ensure a respectful and dignified final committal.

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Renew give a gift back issues e-update customer service . The soldiers ’ remains will eventually be reburied at the Elvet Hill Road Cemetery in Durham City. To read in-depth about the Scottish soldiers imprisoned in Durham, go to “After the Battle.”

Once research on the remains is completed they will be reburied at the Elvet Hill Road Cemetery in The updated plaque was rededicated today, with special prayers and a blessing during the Cathedral’s Evensong service . Remains of 17 th Century Scottish soldiers to be laid to rest in Durham.

Metrical Psalms from the 1650 Scottish Psalter and a Bible reading from the 1611 King James Version have been included in the service, in keeping with the traditions of those who died. 

Canon Rosalind Brown, of Durham Cathedral, said: “The simple graveside ceremony not only reflects the traditions of the 17th century but is also respectful of the circumstances that led to these men dying in Durham.”

A full service in Durham Cathedral was not thought to be appropriate as, although it was not being used as a place of worship, it would have represented a prison to the soldiers at the time.

The Battle of Dunbar was one of the shortest and most brutal battles of the 17th century civil wars.

In less than an hour the English Parliamentarian army, under the command of Oliver Cromwell, defeated the Scottish Covenanting army who supported the claims of Charles II to the Scottish throne.

After the battle thousands of soldiers were marched more than 100 miles to Durham in north-east England.

Around 3,000 soldiers were imprisoned in Durham Cathedral and Castle and those who survived were transported to different parts of the world including France and New England in the US.

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