'Here lie interred the remains of Edward V King of England, and Richard, Duke of York, whose long desired and much sought after bones, after above an hundred and ninety years, were found by most certain tokens, deep interred under the rubbish of the stairs that led up to the Chapel of the White Tower, on the 17th of July in the year of our Lord 1674. Charles the second, a most merciful prince, having compassion upon their hard fortune, performed the funeral rites of these most unhappy princes among the tombs of their ancestors, anno domini 1678.'
But it is the remains found under a stair case by workmen in 1674 that are still thought to be that of the two princes Edward and Richard of Shrewsbury.
Why is that?
Sir Thomas More's in his The History of Richard III says it was so.
....."About midnight (the sely children lying in their beddes) came into the chamber, and sodainly lapped them vp among the clothes so be wrapped them and entangled them keping down by force the fetherbed and pillowes hard vnto their mouthes, that within a while smored and stifled, theyr breath failing, thei gaue vp to god their innocent soules into the ioyes of heauen, leauing to the tormentors their bodyes dead in the bed."
but here's the interesting bit......
..... "Whiche after that the wretches parceiued, first by the strugling with the paines of death, and after long lying styll, to be throughly dead: they laide their bodies naked out vppon the bed, and fetched sir Iames to see them. Which vpon the sight of them, caused those murtherers........... to burye them at the stayre foote, metely depe in the grounde vnder a great heape of stones....... Than rode sir Iames in geat haste to king Richarde, and shewed him al the maner of the murther, who gaue hym gret thanks."
Thomas More is not only responsible for the fact that Charles II and everybody else considers these remains to be that of the two princes but that King Richard III from then on was the princes murderer.
I don't know why More wrote what is written here, or what his motives were, I don't know what happened to the two princes in the summer of 1483, they may well have been murdered, but equally they might not have been.
What I do know is that it has never been proved that the two sons of Edward IV were dead at all.
I also don't believe it is their remains at Westminster Abbey.