Home icon. The Works of Robert Graves. Exhibition: 1 April to 17 June 2011.

Cabinet 12: Roman to American Tales

Count Belisarius.

Robert Graves, Count Belisarius. 4th ed. London: Cassell, 1962.

About June 1937, Graves was on a high. He was recovering from a painful ‘boil’ operation; he was reunited with his sister Clarissa; and his Majorcan friend Gelat (Juan Marriog Mas) had been released from one of Franco’s prisons.

It was at this time that Cassell offered him a contract to write a historical novel which, set in 6th century Byzantium, would become Count Belisarius, an account of Emperor Justinian’s most famous general, and whose exploits with his own knights rivalled those of King Arthur’s heroes.

Published in April 1938 in an edition of 20,000 copies, Count Belisarius was awarded the prestigious Prix FĂ©mina-Vie Heureuse Anglais in 1939.