Ships contained a lot of men all crowded together, so disease could spread very quickly. Nobody knew the real cause of disease; some people thought it was caused by bad air, and carried pomanders full of sweet herbs and spices to keep the smells away.
Among the surgeon’s belongings was a wooden feeding bottle, used to feed a sailor who was too ill or injured to feed themselves. It might have been filled with a stew or a type of broth to make it easy to administer the much needed nutritious food.
Headlice were a common problem on-board ships, much as they are in schools today! The crew of the Mary Rose would use nit combs to remove lice and fleas from their hair.
The men of the Mary Rose would have known that keeping clean was the key to good health. We found many items that were important for this, including a manicure set!
There’s very little evidence of diseases from the human remains found on the ship.