The Connection Between Dr. Seuss, Rosetta Stone, and Theo LeSieg

The Various Pen Names for Theodor Geisel

Dr. Seuss Drawing at His Desk
Corbis via Getty Images / Getty Images

Theodor "Ted" Seuss Geisel wrote more than 60 children's books and became one of the most famous children's authors of all time. He used a few pen names, but his most popular one is a household name: Dr. Seuss. He penned a number of books under other names, such as Theo LeSieg and Rosetta Stone.

Early Pen Names

When he first began writing and illustrating children's books, Theodor Geisel combined "Dr." and "Seuss," his middle name, which was also his mother's maiden name, to create the pseudonym "Dr. Seuss."

He started the practice of using a pseudonym when he was in college and he was stripped of his editorial privileges for the school's humor magazine, the "Jack-O-Lantern." Geisel then began publishing under aliases, such as L. Pasteur, D.G. Rossetti '25, T. Seuss, and Seuss.

Once he left school and became a magazine cartoonist, he began signing his work as “Dr. Theophrastus Seuss” in 1927. Although he did not finish his doctorate in literature at Oxford as he had hoped, he still decided to shorten his pen name to “Dr. Seuss” in 1928.

Pronunciation of Seuss

In acquiring his new pseudonym, he also gained a new pronunciation for his family name. Most Americans pronounced the name "Soose," rhyming with "Goose." The correct pronunciation is actually "Zoice, rhyming with "Voice."

One of his friends, Alexander Liang, created a Seuss-like poem about how people were mispronouncing Seuss:

You’re wrong as the deuce
And you shouldn’t rejoice
If you’re calling him Seuss.
He pronounces it Soice (or Zoice).

Geisel embraced the Americanized pronunciation (his mother's family was Bavarian) because of its close correlation to famed children's "author" Mother Goose. Apparently, he also added the "Doctor (abbreviated Dr.)" to his pen name because his father had always wanted him to practice medicine.

Later Pen Names

He used Dr. Seuss for children's books that he both wrote and illustrated. Theo LeSieg (Geisel spelled backward) is another name he used for books he wrote. Most of the LeSieg books were illustrated by someone else. Rosetta Stone is a pseudonym he used when he worked with Philip D. Eastman. "Stone" is an homage to his wife Audrey Stone.

Books Written Under Different Pen Names

Books Written as Theo LeSieg
Name of the Book Year
Come Over to My House 1966
Hooper Humperdinck...? Not Him! 1976
I Can Write! A Book by Me, Myself 1971
I Wish That I Had Duck Feet 1965
In a People House 1972
Maybe You Should Fly a Jet! Maybe You Should Be a Vet! 1980
Please Try to Remember the First of Octember! 1977
Ten Apples Up on Top 1961
The Eye Book 1968
The Many Mice of Mr. Brice 1973
The Tooth Book 1981
Wacky Wednesday 1974
Would You Rather Be a Bullfrog? 1975
Book Written as Rosetta Stone
Because a Little Bug Went Ka-Choo! (illustrated by Michael Frith) 1975
Books Written as Dr. Seuss
And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street  1937
The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins 1938
The King's Stilts 1939
Horton Hatches the Egg 1940
McElligot's Pool 1947
Thidwick the Big-Hearted Moose 1948
Bartholomew and the Oobleck 1949
If I Ran the Zoo 1950
Scrambled Eggs Super! 1953
Horton Hears a Who! 1954
On Beyond Zebra 1955
If I Ran the Circus 1956
The Cat in the Hat 1957
How the Grinch Stole Christmas 1957
Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories 1958
The Cat in the Hat Comes Back! 1958
Happy Birthday to You! 1959
Green Eggs and Ham 1960
One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish 1960
The Sneetches and Other Stories 1961
Dr. Seuss's Sleep Book 1962
Dr. Seuss's ABC 1963
Hop on Pop 1963
Fox in Socks 1965
I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew 1965
The Cat in the Hat Song Book 1967
The Foot Book 1968
I Can Lick 30 Tigers Today! And Other Stories 1969
My Book About Me 1969
I Can Draw It Myself 1970
Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You? 1970
The Lorax 1971
Marvin K. Mooney Will You Please Go Now! 1972
Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are? 1973
The Shape of Me and Other Stuff 1973
Great Day for Up 1974
There's a Wocket in My Pocket! 1974
Oh, the Thinks You Can Think! 1975
The Cat's Quizzer 1976
I Can Read With My Eyes Shut! 1978
Oh Say Can You Say? 1979
Hunches in Bunches 1982
The Butter Battle Book 1984
You're Only Old Once! 1986
I Am Not Going to Get Up Today! 1987
Oh, the Places You'll Go! 1990
Daisy-Head Mayzie 1994
My Many Colored Days 1996
Hooray for Diffendoofer Day! 1998

Most Famous Books

Seuss' top-selling books and best-known titles include "Green Eggs and Ham," "The Cat in the Hat," "One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish," and "Dr. Seuss's ABC."

Many of Seuss' books have been adapted for television and film and inspired animated series. Popular titles to hit the silver screen included "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," "Horton Hears a Who," and "The Lorax."

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Your Citation
Kennedy, Elizabeth. "The Connection Between Dr. Seuss, Rosetta Stone, and Theo LeSieg." ThoughtCo, Sep. 9, 2021, Kennedy, Elizabeth. (2021, September 9). The Connection Between Dr. Seuss, Rosetta Stone, and Theo LeSieg. Retrieved from Kennedy, Elizabeth. "The Connection Between Dr. Seuss, Rosetta Stone, and Theo LeSieg." ThoughtCo. (accessed March 21, 2023).