Buckingham had turned upon his cousin Richard, who rightly called him “the most untrue creature living”. Shakespeare would have us believe that on seeing the head, Richard said “And so much for Buckingham”. I doubt it very much, because Richard had been very hurt by Buckingham’s treachery and those words smack much more of Shakespeare than the real Richard.
I don’t know if Richard had even asked to see the gory head, or whether his friends just thought he would appreciate the gesture. Anyway, the head rolled and fell on the floor in front of them all, leaving a nasty bloodstain which, it seems, was never cleaned properly. How disgusting! Still, if they’d scrubbed the floor of all trace, there wouldn’t be a juicy creepy story to tell, would there?
To learn more about the Cathedral Close at Salisbury, go to this site.