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The Capricorn Bracelet

3.84  ·  Rating Details ·  107 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
From the fall of Londinium to the building of Hadrian's Wall, and the final departure of the Romans from Britain ...Rosemary Sutcliff's absorbing collection of stories, set at the time of the Roman occupation of Britain, follows the fortunes of a family over three hundred years. All soldiers, they are linked by the Capricorn bracelet, first worn by the centurion Lucius for ...more
Hardcover, 133 pages
Published January 2nd 1973 by Henry Z Walck (first published 1973)
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Matilda Rose
Aug 03, 2016 Matilda Rose rated it liked it
Shelves: roman-fiction
Ever since Lucius Calpurnius, a Roman boy, was awarded the Capricorn Bracelet for his good work as a centurion, it's been passed down the male line of the Calpurnius family since when the Romans first invaded Britain to when they left. This book gives a brilliant insight into life in the Roman legions.

My favourite character was Lucius, who's mentioned in the first chapter of the book. His father wanted him to be a wine merchant, but he wanted to be a soldier and fight for Rome against Queen Boud
Marissa Numer
Marissa Numer rated it liked it
Jan 20, 2017
Rebecca Radnor
Sutcliff essentially doing in short story what she has done with some of her books, create a family with some sort of family talisman that is passed from generation to generation, and via the family members who now possess the item, tell the tale of Britain in that time. In this case, the talisman is a Roman Legionnaire's silver bracelet for meritorious conduct, which rather than being buried with him is passed to his son. The period covered begins with the generation that won the bracelet, and ...more
I loved Rosemary Sutcliff's historical fiction, when I was younger. I read two copies of The Eagle of the Ninth to pieces. This book is also about Roman Britain, although it's more focused on the area around the wall, and is also less about big epic deeds, and more about ordinary people -- focusing on a single family through a period of a couple of hundred years. There's less excitement, I suppose, but there are fascinating little details about how Sutcliff imagines life to have been then -- rea ...more
Hazel West
A wonderful collection of short stories, each one just as good as the others. I'm always a fan of family sagas, and this one is a good short family saga with the connection of the Capricorn Bracelet through the centuries with, of course, Rosemary's usual wonderful writing style to enjoy. Good bits of family story along with military adventure. I'm hard pressed to pick my favorite story, but I think it lands between the one about the Dacian riders and the Frontier Scout one (because I love the Wo ...more
A fairly simple selection of short stories, snapshots of different points in the history of Roman Britain through the eyes of various members of one family. There isn't the same depth and involvement as Sutcliff's full novels, but her mastery of atmosphere more than compensates, providing a vivid glimpse into a long-lost era, and most of the themes and motifs common in her work can be found here. And of course her writing is as poignant and elegiac as ever: by the end, I had a definite lump in m ...more
Aug 11, 2016 Yoshi rated it liked it
A collection of short stories about Romans. I thought this book was quite good, I would recommend it to people who like short classic books and like reading about the Romans.
This book was about a Roman family who pass down a Capricorn bracelet to there sons and daughters. This family are Roman and they have been in tribes called the eagles and the sea wolves which are both war tribes. The book is about there adventures, with the horse thieves and the the building of Hadrian's wall; the attack of
Jun 21, 2011 SA rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2011
It's evident that this started as a radio play, but Sutcliff's skill doesn't suffer for the first person. I think, as it was designed to be read aloud rather than read in a book, that is probably how it really shined but even so I was engrossed through the passage of time. She is very capable at showing (rather than telling) how four hundred years or less completely changed Britain.

Maureen E
Sutcliff fans probably remember the ring with the flawed emerald and dolphin from Lantern Bearers, Silver Branch, etc. Here she traces a similar history, except that the family heirloom is a bracelet with a capricorn device and the family is located around Hadrian’s wall. I would have liked a little more story on several of these, but they were nicely done. [Jan. 2010]
Leah Francis
Jul 13, 2014 Leah Francis rated it it was amazing
An interesting, short little book that gave me a brief overview of Britain under Rome's control. I didn't know anything about that time period, so I had to look up some of the places and people, but I learned a lot. It's also well written and very enjoyable!
This is a compilation of short stories. The uniting factor is a Capricorn bracelet that gets handed down through the generations. It's an interesting read, since history folds down into each new story.

It's written by Rosemary Sutcliff, so you know it's got something going for it. :)
Aug 06, 2011 Iset marked it as to-re-read
One of the few books I enjoyed from the primary school library when I was child. Long overdue a re-read. Must come back to this sometime soon.
Jun 02, 2012 Helen rated it liked it
A nice story of friendship and loyalty
Sep 19, 2009 Saviour rated it it was amazing
a wonderful book. See my deatiled review on

A series of short stories-written for radio-linked by the theme of a Roman Capricorn bracelet
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Rosemary Sutcliff was a British novelist, best known as a writer of highly acclaimed historical fiction. Although primarily a children's author, the quality and depth of her writing also appeals to adults, she herself once commenting that she wrote "for children of all ages from nine to ninety."

Born in West Clandon, Surrey, Sutcliff spent her early youth in Malta and other naval bases where her fa
More about Rosemary Sutcliff...

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