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Paternoster rosary beads


This paternoster was found on the main deck of the Mary Rose, and consists of boxwood beads, three of which are conical allowing them to be formed into a cross.

Paternosters, or rosary beads, were found on all decks of the Mary Rose, showing that many of the crew would have been deeply religious, which is understandable in a period of such religious turmoil in England. While many Roman Catholic rituals had been outlawed by Henry VIII, in attempt to encourage the laity to take a more active role in religious instruction, recitation of the rosaries was permitted, provided it was done with due reverence.