Researchers Identify Head of Henry IV

Scientists in France have just cracked a very cold case: They’ve determined that an embalmed head does indeed belong to King Henry IV, who was assassinated in 1610. The head has been passed around private collections since 1793, when zealous French revolutionaries exhumed the king’s body and chopped off the head. 19 researchers conducted nine tests to match computer models of the skull with portraits of the king, and to match a facial lesion and healed wounds to the historical record of those traits. Henry IV, the “Green Gallant” and the first of the Bourbon monarchs, was one of France’s favorite kings, credited with achieving peace between Catholics and Protestants, starting the French economy, and building several Parisian landmarks.