Rosemary Manning

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Rosemary Joy Manning (b. Weymouth, Dorset 9 December 1911 – 5 April 1988, Tunbridge Wells)[1] was a British author of both adult and children's books. Her best-known adult book was The Chinese Garden and she was also well known for her popular Dragon children's series. She was also known by the pseudonyms Sarah Davys and Mary Voyle.[1]


She studied at Royal Holloway College from 1930 to 1933 and graduated with an honours degree in Classics.


She first worked in an Oxford Street department store then as a secretary[1] In the 1930s, unhappy at work she suffered a nervous breakdown and was unsuccessfully treated at the Maudsley Hospital by unsympathetic doctors due to her lesbianism. Her former headmistress offered her teaching work and she stayed as a teacher for a further 35 years. In 1950 she moved with a friend to Hampstead, north London, to take over a long-established girls' preparatory school and became headmistress.

She later took up writing, After retirement, she came out as a lesbian during a television interview in 1980.[1]


  • Look, Stranger (1960)
  • The Chinese Garden (1962)
  • Man on a Tower (1965)
  • A Time and A Time (1971)
  • A Corridor of Mirrors (1987) - Autobiography[1]

Dragon series[edit]

  • Green Smoke (1957)
  • Dragon in Danger (1959)
  • The Dragon's Quest (1961)
  • The Dragon in the Harbour (1980)


See also[edit]