Today is Saint George's day- the day of the patron saint of England. His flag- the red cross on the white background- is England's flag and yet, it is thought that he never set foot on this green and pleasant land.
Very little is known about St George's life, but it is thought that he was a high ranking soldier in the Roman army, tortured by the Emperor's orders to make him deny his faith in Christ.
It was not until about 1552 that St George was adopted as the sole patron saint of England. At Dragon's Hill in Uffington, tradition claims the bare chalk patch on the top of the hill was caused by the blood spilled when St. George slew the dragon.
However, unlike St Patrick, St David and St Andrew, George's story is not one often told in schools. So here is my favourite version, told by the amazing Geraldine McCaughrean.
A wreath of sinew and claw...
Beautifully told in the rich, evocative language which characterises Geraldine McCaughrean's writing, this book is a fabulous version of the story of Saint George and his fight against the dragon. The illustrations have a medieval feel to them, creating the perfect setting for the legend.
So much work can stem from this wonderful re-telling; it is a real treasure that should have a place on every bookcase!
Saint George and the Dragonby Geralding McCaughrean, illustrated by Nicki Palin
OUP ISBN: 978-0192723765