London: Scientists have forwaded a formal application to the Church of England to exhume the body of world famous writer William Shakespeare, to figure out how he died.
A team of palaeontologists said they have applied for permission to excavate the playwright’s tomb, which lies inside his local parish church in Stratford-upon-Avon, The Daily Mail reports.
Paleontologist Francis Thackeray, an expert behind the project said he hoped to use state-of-the-art computer equipment to create a groundbreaking three dimensional reconstruction of the famous writer.
He added that doing so could help finally establish what led to Shakespeare’s death almost four centuries ago in 1616.
“400 years after his death, Shakespeare remains one of the most famous people in history – yet nobody knows for certain how he died,” said Thackeray, who is from the Witwatersrand University in Johannesburg, South Africa.
“We now hope to be able to establish his full health history. By accessing his remains, we hope to build a clear picture of the kind of life he led, the sicknesses he may have suffered, and hopefully what caused his death,” he added.
His team has made a formal application to the Church of England for permission to open the grave and get access to Shakespeare’s remains.
Thackeray said the technology they would use is hi-tech and powerful, and with patience they could achieve great results while staying within the letter of the warning.
“Our dream would be to get some results from our project in time for the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in 2016,” said Thackeray.
Thackeray first made the controversial suggestion a decade ago after using modern forensic techniques to examine 24 pipes found buried in what had been the playwright’s garden.