The Seven Wonders A Novel of the Ancient World

Novels of Ancient Rome

Steven Saylor

Minotaur Books



Trade Paperback

336 Pages



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The year is 92 B.C. Gordianus has just turned eighteen and is about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime: a far-flung journey to see the Seven Wonders of the World. Gordianus is not yet called “the Finder”—but at each of the Seven Wonders, the wide-eyed young Roman encounters a mystery to challenge the powers of deduction.
Accompanying Gordianus on his travels is his tutor, Antipater of Sidon, the world’s most celebrated poet. But there is more to the apparently harmless old poet than meets the eye. Before they leave home, Antipater fakes his own death and travels under an assumed identity. Looming in the background are the first rumblings of a political upheaval that will shake the entire Roman world.
Teacher and pupil journey to the fabled cities of Greece and Asia Minor, and then to Babylon and Egypt. They attend the Olympic Games, take part in exotic festivals, and marvel at the most spectacular constructions ever devised by mankind. Along the way they encounter murder, witchcraft and ghostly hauntings. Traveling the world for the first time, Gordianus discovers that amorous exploration goes hand-in-hand with crime-solving. The mysteries of love are the true wonders of the world, and at the end of the journey, an Eighth Wonder awaits him in Alexandria. Her name is Bethesda.


Praise for The Seven Wonders

"Saylor puts such detail and tumultuous life into his scenes that the sensation of rubbing elbows with the ancients is quite uncanny." --New York Times Book Review on A Murder on the Appian Way

"A vivid and robust writer, Saylor invests his books with exquisite detail and powerful drama."--The Philadelphia Inquirer on A Mist of Prophecies

"Saylor evokes the ancient world more convincingly than any writer of his generation."--The Sunday Times (London) on The Judgment of Caesar

“Saylor’s scholarship is breathtaking and his writing enthralls.”--Ruth Rendell, The Sunday Times (London) on Last Seen in Massilia

“Saylor is an excellent guide through this fascinating underworld. Superb historical fiction.”--Booklist (starred review) on Empire

“Who knew empire building could be so entertaining?… Using the same depth of knowledge, skillful plotting and graceful writing style displayed in his wonderful (and, if you love ancient history, essential) Roma Sub Rosa mysteries, Saylor immerses you in to the sometimes dangerous currents of Roman life…Neither Rome nor its story, it seems, were built in a day. In Empire, they're built to last.”--USA Today

“Steven Saylor’s engrossing series of popular novels centers around Gordianus the Finder—a kind of Roman Sherlock Holmes.” —The Wall Street Journal on The Triumph of Caesar

“Saylor has acquired the information of a historian but he enjoys the gifts of a born novelist.”--Boston Globe on A Murder on the Appian Way

“Superb. From the exceptional attention to historical detail to the development of character and plot, which is based on real history, it’s a treat to read. . . . All the action takes place in a time of great upheaval both in Rome and Egypt, and Saylor, an excellent scholar, makes the most of it.”--The Globe and Mail (Toronto) on The Judgment of Caesar

In the Press

Fiction Review: The Seven Wonders: A Novel of the Ancient World by Steven Saylor. Minotaur, $25.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-312-35984-3
Saylor's lucky 13th entry in his Roma Sub Rosa series (after 2008's The Triumph of Caesar) takes Gordianus the Finder on a tour of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. In 92 B.C.E., the Greek poet

Reviews from Goodreads



Read an Excerpt

Prelude in Rome:
“Now that you’re dead, Antipater, what do you plan to do with yourself?”
My father laughed at his own joke. He knew perfectly well what Antipater was planning to do, but he couldn’t resist a paradoxical turn of phrase. Puzzles were my father’s passion—and solving them his profession. He called himself Finder, because men hired him to find the truth.
Not surprisingly, old Antipater answered with a poem made up on the spot; for yes, the Antipater of whom I speak was the Antipater
Read the full excerpt


  • Steven Saylor

  • Steven Saylor is the author of acclaimed historical mystery novels featuring Gordianus the Finder, including The Triumph of Caesar, as well as the internationally bestselling historical novels Empire and Roma.  He has appeared on the History Channel as an expert on Roman politics and life.  He divides his time between Berkeley, California and Austin, Texas.

  • Steven Saylor Photo: Jerry Bauer
    Steven Saylor