The Silver Branch
Rosemary Sutcliff, The Silver Branch - Slightly Foxed Cubs
  • Pages: 216
  • Format: 220 x 155mm
  • Illustrations: Original black and white drawings by Charles Keeping
  • Publication date: 1 September 2019
  • Producer: Smith Settle
  • Genre: Historical Fiction
  • Binding: Cloth hardback
  • Trimmings: Illustrated endpapers; colour blocking to spine and front
  • NB: Hand-numbered, limited edition of 2,000 copies
  • ISBN: 9781910898338
Made in Britain

The Silver Branch

Rosemary Sutcliff

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“More than a hundred years went by after the time of this story, before Rome fell; before the last of the Legions were withdrawn from Britain and Rutupiae Light went out and the Dark Ages had begun. But already the great days were over. Rome was harassed by the barbarians all along her frontiers, while at home generals fought to become Emperors and rival Emperors struggled among themselves for power.

Marcus Aurelius Carausius was a real person; so were Allectus the Traitor and the Legate Asklepiodotus; and so of course was the Caesar Constantius, whose son Constantine was the first Christian Emperor of Rome. For the rest: The body of a Saxon warrior buried with his weapons was found in one of the ditches of Richborough Castle, which was Rutupiae in the days of the Eagles. The Basilica at Calleva was burned down towards the end of the Roman occupation and later roughly rebuilt, and the eagle which I have already written about in another story was discovered during excavations in the ruins of one of the courtrooms behind the Main Hall. At Calleva also – Silchester as it is now – there was found a stone with a man’s name carved on it in the script of the ancient Irish; and the name was Evicatos, or Ebicatos, which means ‘Spear Man’.” – Rosemary Sutcliff

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Comments & Reviews

  1. ‘Her prose is always lucid and always vivid. The accuracy of her detail enabled her to create an enormously rich canvas with absolute conviction. She never wrote down to her child readers but had an instinctive way of speaking directly to them. She was one of a generation of children’s writers who understood the importance of writing for children as intelligent readers. She gave them a way of stepping into the past by offering characters with whom they could immediately identify. She loved the past and made it available and fresh without ever corrupting it with contemporary overtones.’

    Read Rosemary Sutcliff’s obituary in the Independent

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