Tudor Sailor Bones Set for Exhibit

400 went down on Mary Rose as dismayed king watched
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Oct 12, 2009 5:26 AM CDT
King Henry VIII watched with dismay from a castle as his ship went down to defeat against the French in 1545.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – The bones of King Henry VIII's faithful fighters will soon go on display in a Portsmouth museum, nearly 500 years after they were defeated at sea by the French. The sailors of the flagship Mary Rose went down to defeat in a battle among 80 other Tudor vessels against 225 French ships packed with 30,000 soldiers sent by King Francis I in 1545. The underwater wreck of the Mary Rose was discovered in 1846 by a fisherman.

Other artifacts, such as a fashionable Tudor "man bag," England's oldest fiddle, backgammon boards and longbows, will be displayed with the bones to give a unique perspective of the times. "Nowhere else is a single moment in Tudor life captured as it is with the Mary Rose," said the head of the ship's trust. Officials haven't yet decided exactly how to exhibit the remains of some 90 sailors. "Displaying bones is something that causes huge controversy," conceded the head of the new museum.