Although the wreck of the Mary Rose was raised twenty years ago, the excavations and conservation work and indeed the ship itself have never been published in full. Now the Mary Rose Trust, with the Heritage Lottery Fund is publishing the complete history of the project and the research up to the present day in five highly illustrated volumes, revealing a wealth of information covering all aspects of the ship. Sealed by Time: The Loss and Recovery of the Mary Rose traces the history of the Mary Rose from great naval vessel to ruinous shipwreck to an outstanding museum display. The Mary Rose was an extraordinary ship. Built to a new design, she was one of the first great British warships. Her career spanned all but a few years of Henry VIII's reign and she took place in most of his wars. Combining for the first time all that is known from contemporary documents and the archaeological evidence, Peter Marsden and a team of specialists give a fascinating and detailed overview of her history. They set out details of the circumstances of her building, participation in three wars with France, repairs and rebuilds, and finally the tragic sinking with massive loss of life in Portsmouth Harbour in 1545 as she prepared to encounter the French fleet one more time. Also described are the place of the ship in naval and seafaring history, the novel aspects of her shape and construction, how she performed at sea, her structure, rigging and armoury. Bringing the story up-to-date, further chapters describe the epic project to excavate and salvage the ship that culminated in the raising of the hull in 1982, an event watched by millions on television, and subsequently how the museum and display of the massive hull were created. Beautifully illustrated with contemporary paintings and documents as well as photos of the excavations and some of the 26,000 objects recovered, this will be of great interest to everyone with an interest in maritime archaeology, conservation, and the history of the period.
Peter Marsden is one of Britain's leading experts in maritime archaeology. He has been responsible for excavating a number of important shipwrecks, most notably in London. His major publications include two volumes on the Ships of the Port of London (English Heritage 1994) and Ships and Shipwrecks (Batsford 1997). He is currently Director of the Shipwreck Heritage Centre in Hastings.