Joint project between forensic experts and the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam.

Forensic Research Master Projects

8 November 2018

Two case studies of multiple objects from the Rijksmuseum's collection will be performed. The objects are supposedly related to historical events concerning Ernst Casimir I, Count of Nassau-Dietz (1573-1632) and his son Hendrik Casimir I (1612-1640).

Ernst Casimir I was governor of Friesland. After his death Hendrik took over, along with the provinces of Drenthe and Groningen. The younger son of Ernst Casimir was Willem Frederik (1613-1664), who is an ancestor of the present royal family in the Netherlands.
The first case consists of a cloak, pants and a hat which allegedly belonged to Ernst Casimir I, who received a lethal shot to the head in 1632, during the siege of Roermond by the Spanish forces. It is assumed that these clothes were worn by Ernst Casimir I, and that the hat and breeches were worn as he died on the battlefield.
The second case consists of two shirts, a buff coat, underpants, a hat and two bone fragments which are allegedly related to the death of Hendrik Casimir, who was shot in the back during the battle of Hulst and died several days later.
The objects of both case studies show different traces of what appears to be blood, bodily fluids and gun residue, which are believed to relate to the deaths of Ernst and Hendrik Casimir. Moreover, from both events the bullet claims to have been preserved.

Aim of the Research The aim of the project is to investigate the authenticity of the preserved objects and to study the relationship of the items in the two cases.

Published by  Co van Ledden Hulsebosch Center