The literary career of English writer Ian Serraillier has been long and varied. Serraillier's works include poems for adults, adventure novels for young adults, verse narratives for young adults based on classical and medieval sources, radio verse plays, picture books for younger readers, and a nonfiction introduction to Chaucer for high school and college students. Several of Serraillier's poems have been broadcast in the United Kingdom, the United States, and elsewhere, and his novel The Silver Sword was serialized on British television.
Serraillier was born in London on September 24, 1912. He attended a private boarding school in Sussex and then Brighton College, where he developed a life-long fascination with classical mythology. From 1931 to 1935 Serraillier studied at Oxford University where he earned a degree in English language and literature. During college he developed a special interest in medieval literature, which inspired several of his most important later writings.
Although Serraillier had always hoped to become a writer, during the first half of his adult life writing was only an avocation. From 1936 to 1961 he held a series of teaching positions. Throughout much of this time he devoted his vacations to writing. His first published works were poems intended for adults that appeared in the 1942 collection Three New Poets: Roy McFadden, Alex Comfort, Ian Serraillier. Soon two volumes of his poetry for younger...
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