Picture of author.

Rosemary Sutcliff (1920–1992)

Author of The Eagle of the Ninth

81+ Works 19,831 Members 298 Reviews 78 Favorited

About the Author

Rosemary Sutcliff was on born December 14, 1920 in East Clandon in Surrey, England. As a child she had Still's Disease, a form of juvenile arthritis. The effect of this led to many stays in hospital for painful remedial operations. She ended her formal education at fourteen, and went to Bideford show more Art School. She passed the City and Guilds examination and worked as a painter of miniatures. She felt cramped by the small canvas of miniature painting and turned to writing. Her first two books, The Chronicles of Robin Hood and The Queen Elizabeth Story, were published in 1950. Her other works included The Eagle of the Ninth, The Silver Branch, Sword Song, and the autobiography Blue Remembered Hills. She won the annual Carnegie Medal from the Library Association for The Lantern Bearers in 1959 and the annual Horn Book Award for Tristan and Iseult in 1971. She won inaugural Phoenix Award in 1985 for The Mark of the Horse Lord and again in 2010 for The Shining Company. In 1975, she was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire for services to children's literature, and was promoted to be a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1992. She died on July 23, 1992. (Bowker Author Biography) show less


Works by Rosemary Sutcliff

The Eagle of the Ninth (1954) 3,226 copies, 62 reviews
Black Ships Before Troy: The Story of the Iliad (1993) 1,836 copies, 17 reviews
The Silver Branch (1957) 1,353 copies, 16 reviews
The Lantern Bearers (1959) 1,335 copies, 23 reviews
The Wanderings of Odysseus (1995) 1,127 copies, 7 reviews
Sword at Sunset (1963) 833 copies, 20 reviews
The Shining Company (1990) 798 copies, 9 reviews
Outcast (1955) 608 copies, 7 reviews
Beowulf: Dragonslayer (1961) 494 copies, 9 reviews
Warrior Scarlet (1958) 445 copies, 5 reviews
The Mark of the Horse Lord (1965) 406 copies, 11 reviews
Tristan and Iseult (1971) 400 copies, 5 reviews
Knight's Fee (1960) 329 copies, 4 reviews
Sword Song (1997) 315 copies, 6 reviews
Dawn Wind (1961) 302 copies, 6 reviews
Frontier Wolf (1980) 286 copies, 9 reviews
The Shield Ring (1956) — Author — 261 copies, 8 reviews
The High Deeds of Finn MacCool (1967) 223 copies, 1 review
Song for a Dark Queen (1978) 216 copies, 2 reviews
Blood Feud (1976) 191 copies, 6 reviews
The Witch's Brat (1970) 187 copies, 7 reviews
Blue Remembered Hills (1983) 182 copies, 3 reviews
The Hound of Ulster (1963) 179 copies, 3 reviews
The Armourer's House (1951) 178 copies, 2 reviews
Flame-Colored Taffeta (1986) 171 copies
Sun Horse, Moon Horse (1977) 158 copies, 3 reviews
The Minstrel and the Dragon Pup (1993) 149 copies, 4 reviews
The Chronicles of Robin Hood (1950) 147 copies, 2 reviews
The Capricorn Bracelet (1973) 146 copies, 1 review
Bonnie Dundee (1983) 146 copies
The Flowers of Adonis (1969) 128 copies, 5 reviews
Brother Dusty-Feet (1952) 124 copies, 1 review
The Rider of the White Horse (1959) 109 copies, 3 reviews
Lady in Waiting (1957) 100 copies
Simon (1953) 94 copies, 3 reviews
Blood and Sand (1989) 79 copies, 2 reviews
The Eagle of the Ninth [Oxford Bookworms] (1995) 63 copies, 3 reviews
The Queen Elizabeth Story (1950) 54 copies, 1 review
Heather, Oak, and Olive; Three Stories (1972) 54 copies, 1 review
A Circlet of Oak Leaves (1965) 38 copies
Eagle's Egg (1981) 31 copies, 1 review
The Chief's Daughter (1967) 29 copies
Is Anyone There? (1978) — Editor — 27 copies
Chess-Dream in a Garden (1993) 27 copies
Heroes and History (1965) 27 copies
Eagle's Honour (1995) 26 copies, 1 review
A Little Dog Like You (1987) 25 copies
The Changeling (1974) 18 copies, 1 review
Rudyard Kipling (Walck monograph) (1960) 16 copies, 1 review
Shifting Sands (1977) — Author — 12 copies
Houses and History (1960) 10 copies
We Lived in Drumfyvie (1975) 10 copies, 1 review
De spelen van Olympia (1972) 7 copies
Little Hound Found (1989) 5 copies
Alcestis / Beowulf (1967) 4 copies
A Saxon Settler (1965) 3 copies, 1 review
The Bridge Builders (1959) 3 copies
Blutfehde (2010) 1 copy
Wettkampf in Olympia (1974) 1 copy

Associated Works

The Mammoth Book of Arthurian Legends (1998) — Contributor — 197 copies
The Eagle [2011 film] (2001) — Original novel — 133 copies, 2 reviews
Adventure Stories (1988) — Contributor — 82 copies, 1 review
The House of the Nightmare and Other Eerie Tales (1967) — Contributor — 47 copies, 2 reviews
Stories for Tens and Over (1976) — Contributor — 35 copies
The Dream Time (1967) — Afterword, some editions; Postscript, some editions — 34 copies
The Thorny Paradise: Writers on Writing for Children (1975) — Contributor — 15 copies
Hundreds and Hundreds (1984) — Contributor — 8 copies
Tales of Magic and Enchantment (1966) — Contributor — 8 copies
The Real Thing: Seven Stories About Love (1979) — Contributor — 7 copies
Miscellany One (1964) — Contributor — 3 copies
Galaxy (1970) — Contributor — 3 copies
Thrilling Stories from the Past for Boys (1970) — Contributor — 2 copies


(275) adventure (177) Ancient Greece (157) ancient history (150) Ancient Rome (176) Arthurian (233) Arthurian legend (99) Britain (352) British (147) children (265) children's (580) children's fiction (428) children's literature (317) ebook (147) England (256) fantasy (251) fiction (1,799) Folio Society (198) Greece (98) historical (476) historical fiction (2,297) history (429) juvenile (133) juvenile fiction (160) King Arthur (196) literature (209) medieval (116) Middle Ages (102) novel (154) own (135) read (90) Roman (148) Roman Britain (386) Roman Empire (133) Rome (197) Rosemary Sutcliff (137) to-read (509) YA (310) young adult (285) young adult fiction (232)

Common Knowledge

Date of death
Burial location
West Sussex
East Clandon, Surrey, England, UK
Place of death
Chichester, West Sussex, England, UK
Places of residence
Arundel, Sussex, England, UK
Surrey, England, UK
London, England, UK
Bideford Art School
children's book author
Awards and honors
Order of the British Empire (Officer ∙ 1975)
Order of the British Empire (Commander ∙ 1992)
Short biography
Rosemary Sutcliff was born in England and spent her childhood in Malta and various other naval bases at which her father, a Royal Navy officer, was stationed. She was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at a young age and used a wheelchair most of her life. She left school at age 14 and entered Bideford Art School, which she attended for three years. She worked as a painter of miniatures and began her published writing career in 1950 with The Chronicles of Robin Hood. Her best-known work, The Eagle of the Ninth, was published in 1954. Although she was considered primarily a children's author, much of her work also appeals to adults. Sutcliff won many awards for her writing, and is published worldwide. She never married.



The Eagle of the Ninth in Folio Society Devotees (April 2023)
Rosemary Sutcliff in Roman and Dark Ages Britain (November 2018)


I read this in almost one sitting with my own collie curled up beside me. Having him beside me made the sections with Argos all the more gripping and emotional, I'd also run away with nothing but my dog to save him if necessary!
This book would be perfect for 8 -12 year olds, wholesome, beautifully written and characters that were very easy to feel attached to.
ChariseH | May 25, 2024 |
This is a very short but interesting novella. The setting is of a grandfather telling his grandchildren how while as a Roman standard-bearer he came to marry their grandmother. Since it is just a glimpse into the grandfather's life there isn't much history or background set up but if you are familiar with Rosemary Sutcliff's books or the history of Roman Britian it will be easy to follow.
It interesting that I felt like I was reading from the "baddie's" perspective. In the lead up to the Battle of Mons Graupius my loyalties lay completely with the Caledonians not the Romans.
- "The Roman victories came not by their strength but by our weakness... Now we stand together as one People, and we are strong!"
Like all Rosemary Sutcliff books this novella is packed full of trivia titbits and even a cameo from the Ninth Legion!
… (more)
ChariseH | May 25, 2024 |
I read it in one evening while sitting on the edge of my seat the entire way. Brilliant! 10 out of 10, would recommend.
1 vote
ChariseH | 15 other reviews | May 25, 2024 |
Three instances of women that have bare breasts.
FamiliesUnitedLL | 6 other reviews | May 11, 2024 |



You May Also Like

Associated Authors

C. Walter Hodges Illustrator
Garcia Gual Carlos Introduction
Anthony Lawton Contributor
Ralph Thompson Illustrator
Joan Aiken Contributor
Roy Brown Contributor
Roald Dahl Contributor
Ursula K. Le Guin Contributor
Jeremy Seabrook Contributor
Jan Mark Contributor
Lynne Reid Banks Contributor
Alan Garner Contributor
Susan Hill Contributor
Jane Gardam Contributor
Margaret Forster Contributor
Robert Westall Contributor
Leon Garfield Contributor
Brian Patten Contributor
Charles Keeping Illustrator
Geoff Taylor Cover artist
Charles Mikolaycak Cover artist
Shirley Felts Illustrator
Robert Glenister Narrator, Narrator
Alan Lee Illustrator
Ruth Wolf Translator
Dick de Wilde Illustrator
Neal McPheeters Cover artist
Miep Diekmann Translator
Hector Garrido Cover artist
Roman Pisarev Illustrator
Penelope Lively Introduction
Victor Ambrus Illustrator
Gino D'Achille Cover artist
Enrico Arno Cover artist
Moline Kramer Cover artist
Richard Jones Cover artist
Leslie Marshall Illustrator
Alan Langford Cover artist
Leo Summers Cover artist
Tonke Dragt Illustrator
Richard Lebenson Illustrator
Ivor Owen Translator
Rachel Birkett Cover artist
Isabel Greenberg Illustrator
Lara Maiklem Introduction
Richard Cuffari Illustrator
Ted Lewin Cover artist
Elizabeth Goudge Introduction
Victor G. Ambrus Illustrator
Gwenan Jones Translator
Laszlo Acs Illustrator


Also by

Charts & Graphs