Rosemary Sutcliff inspired Bob Williams-Findlay at school

Rosemary Sutcliff inspired  Bob Williams-Findlay, who is himself a writer, as he explains in a brief but touching post he left today :

I was a teenager when I read The Eagle Of The Ninth and it inspired me to both read and write. I told my teacher I wanted to be a writer, but being a disabled person, I doubted I would succeed. Not too long after the school had a visitor, it was Rosemary. I had my answer and I still have the passion for writing. In my opinion Rosemary is up there with the best.

4 thoughts on “Rosemary Sutcliff inspired Bob Williams-Findlay at school

  1. For me, it was Warrior Scarlet – I was there, in the wolf hunt, totally involved with all my senses. I know now about the grease in the sheeps’ wool (I do hand spinning as a re-enactor ‘in the grease’). Yet when I re-read it recently, I realised that 90% of it was out of my own mind, elaborating on the framework that Rosemary Sutcliff had built.
    I was there, too, when Marcus burnt his little wooden bird as an offering in Eagle of the Ninth, and knew how much it meant to him, and I was there on the ramparts of the fort at the heart rending end of Mark of the Horse Lord.
    Rosemary Sutcliff’s books helped make me an archaeologist (along with Badger from Wind in the Willows, who lived among the remains of a Roman villa, if you read between the lines, and and inspirational teacher at secondary school).
    I hope the books are re-published because of the film – I don’t know of anything being written today that is as good as Rosemary Sutcliff was for totally involving the reader in her world and making history fascinating.


  2. I am married to John Sutcliff, who was a cousin of The Rosemary! We are delighted to see that The Eagle of the Ninth is now made into a film. John met Rosemary many times through his life and I met her a few times. I can remember a lovely sunny afternoon in the garden of Swallowshaw with 4 of our 5 children – our only son aged 3 amused Rosemary by turning somersaults continually. We now have many grandchildren with one aged 10 an avid reader of Rosemary’s books and wonder rather cheekily if there are any available seats for the premier. Thank you Rosemary Sutcliff


    • Unfortunately the premiere is gone (last Wednesday) but what a delight to read this. Thank you for being in contact. I too have fond memories of Rosemary’s garden and of my children there as well as myself! I really hope, especially in UK and Europe, the film is going to lead to a greatly renewed interest in Rosemary and her work


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