Boudicca - Rage Against the Dying Light

Boudicca was born in around 25 A.C.E. The only known writings about her are the following. We have The Annals of Tacitus written about fifty years after her death which covers in a few paragraphs her uprising and battles against the Roman invaders of her beloved British isle. She is also mentioned in a history of Rome written one hundred years after her death by Cassius Dio. Both are accounts written only about her battles against the Roman invaders. Those accounts also include the battles between Venutius a foster prince of a Celtic tribe and Cartimandua, the vicious queen of a large Celtic tribe who married Venutius and then betrayed him. Both were her contemporaries. Both accounts are written from the Roman point of view.

Boudicca was married to Prasutagus a much older king of a large and wealthy British Celtic tribe the Iceni in a politically matched marriage. When Romans invaded Briton Prasutagus made a pact with the Romans to lay down all tribal arms and only use them in defense of the Romans in return for a pact that would save his people and his wealth. When Prasutagus died the Romans broke that pact overrunning the Iceni palace, taking slaves, publicly flogging Boudicca now queen of the Iceni and assaulting her two young daughters.

Boudicca enlisted thousands of Celtic warriors to lead them into battle with her two young daughters beside her in a chariot to avenge their assaults upon her daughters and upon herself and free her beloved isle from Roman tyranny. Her epic battles are the most celebrated in Celtic history making her the first known woman warrior.

Many poems have been written about her and many paintings have celebrated her courage, along with a statue to her memory that overlooks the Thames in London with Big Ben in the background. A rehab facility for women army veterans from the Iraq war considers her their inspiration and patron.

There are still many groups around the world who meet and celebrate her memory and her courage as well as a Facebook site which features her that has had millions of hits.

Written by Jan Surasky 


Barnes & Noble


Of all the women warriors in myth and legend few are more storied than Boudicca, the fierce redheaded queen who, in the first century A.C. E. led the most celebrated Celtic rebellion in history. Until now books about her have been based on the only written records that exist—ancient Roman writings. But, Rage Against the Dying Light tells the story from the Celtic point of view.

At first a carefree young princess who revels in friendships and the beauty of her land, Boudicca learns the ways and rites of her Druid tribe. She prepares for the day she will be queen, wife and mother. Soon after her politically matched marriage to the much older king of a large and wealthy tribe, however, her world turns dark. After the death of her husband Roman invaders intent on conquering the loosely allied Celts attack the palace breaking a pact that would have saved the tribe from doom, taking slaves, publicly humiliating Boudicca and assaulting her two young daughters.

Betrayed and outraged Boudicca does not back down. She nurses her daughters back to health and with them beside her in a chariot she leads thousands of warriors in an epic battle to avenge her daughters and rid her beloved homeland of Roman tyranny.

Rage Against the Dying Light is the story of history’s first woman warrior and a symbol of courage inspiring paintings, poetry and a statue in her honor overlooking the Thames in London.

 Author Jan Surasky

Multiple award-winning author Jan Surasky has worked as a book reviewer, movie reviewer and entertainment writer for a daily San Francisco newspaper. Her many articles and short stories have been published in national and regional magazines and newspapers. She has also taught writing at a literary center and a number of area colleges. She is a graduate of Cornell University with graduate courses in English literature at the University of Rochester. She lives in upstate New York. Her first novel Rage Against the Dying Light was a finalist in the Eric Hoffer Book Awards. Her website is

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