The synthesis of a range of ferrocene-substituted ethynylanthracenes and 1,1′-(bis-(2-ethenylanthraquinoyl)ferrocene has been achieved. The synthesis relies on the production of ferrocenylanthraquinones as key precursors. The products were obtained in the reactions of ferrocenylanthraquinones with phenylethynyllithium or trimethylsilylethynyllithium followed by reduction with tin chloride. The key products such as 1- and 2-ferrocenyl(9,10-bis-phenylethynyl)anthracenes have been characterised by X-ray single crystal diffraction. © 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.