sappho biography

A philosopher Maximus of Tyre wrote that the friendships of Sappho were similar to those of Socrates – suggesting Sappho had a circle of like-minded friends brought together by a love of art, poetry and culture. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. [90] She contrasts Sappho's "flowery,[...] adorned" style with the "austere, decorous, restrained" style embodied in the works of later classical authors such as Sophocles, Demosthenes, and Pindar. [153], Like the ancients, modern critics have tended to consider Sappho's poetry "extraordinary". In 1959, Denys Page, for example, stated that Sappho's extant fragments portray "the loves and jealousies, the pleasures and pains, of Sappho and her companions"; and he adds, "We have found, and shall find, no trace of any formal or official or professional relationship between them, ... no trace of Sappho the principal of an academy. Most recently, major discoveries in 2004 (the "Tithonus poem" and a new, previously unknown fragment)[73] and 2014 (fragments of nine poems: five already known but with new readings, four, including the "Brothers Poem", not previously known)[74] have been reported in the media around the world. The most commonly used numbering system is that of E. M. Voigt, which in most cases matches the older Lobel-Page system. [19] Fragments of Sappho continue to be rediscovered. [24][25], No reliable portrait of Sappho's physical appearance has survived; all extant representations, ancient and modern, are artists' conceptions. [122], In antiquity Sappho's poetry was highly admired, and several ancient sources refer to her as the "tenth Muse". Only the ode to Aphrodite, 28 lines long, is complete.

[133], Sappho's poetry also influenced other ancient authors. Her poems express great passion for a variety of people – both men and women; they may have been autobiographical or not. [146] Horace called her "mascula Sappho" in his Epistles, which the later Porphyrio commented was "either because she is famous for her poetry, in which men more often excel, or because she is maligned for having been a tribad". They probably lived in Mytilene, which then was a significant city on the island. Corrections? [165], From the beginning of the 19th century, women poets such as Felicia Hemans (The Last Song of Sappho) and Letitia Elizabeth Landon (Sketch the First.

[87][88][i] According to Page DuBois, the language, as well as the content, of Sappho's poetry evokes an aristocratic sphere. [54] Whatever its make-up, the Alexandrian edition of Sappho probably grouped her poems by their metre: ancient sources tell us that each of the first three books contained poems in a single specific metre. [49] Some time in the second or third century, Alexandrian scholars produced a critical edition of Sappho's poetry. [137] Later in that century, she would become a model for the so-called New Woman – independent and educated women who desired social and sexual autonomy –[166] and by the 1960s, the feminist Sappho was – along with the hypersexual, often but not exclusively lesbian Sappho – one of the two most important cultural perceptions of Sappho. In the ode to Aphrodite, the poet invokes the goddess to appear, as she has in the past, and to be her ally in persuading a girl she desires to love her. Herodotus, the oldest source of the story, reports that Charaxus ransomed Rhodopis for a large sum and that Sappho wrote a poem rebuking him for this.
[132] This story may well be apocryphal, especially as Ammianus Marcellinus tells a similar story about Socrates and a song of Stesichorus, but it is indicative of how highly Sappho's poetry was considered in the ancient world. A literary papyrus of the second century CE. In the era of Alexandrian scholarship (3rd and 2nd centuries bce), what survived of her work was collected and published in a standard edition of nine books of lyrical verse, divided according to metre. [27] In the Tithonus poem she describes her hair as now white but formerly melaina, i.e. In the 3rd and 2nd centuries BCE her writings were collected in a nine-book edition of lyrics, but that work did not endure beyond the 8th or 9th century CE. [108], One of the major focuses of scholars studying Sappho has been to attempt to determine the cultural context in which Sappho's poems were composed and performed. Sappho of Lesbos was a Greek poet who wrote from about 610 to about 580 B.C.E. Sappho also began to be regarded as a role model for campaigners for women's rights, beginning with works such as Caroline Norton's The Picture of Sappho.

She was from a wealthy family from Lesbos, though her parents' names are uncertain. [52], The Alexandrian edition of Sappho's poetry was based on the existing Athenian collections,[49] and was divided into at least eight books, though the exact number is uncertain. Three epigrams attributed to Sappho are extant, but these are actually Hellenistic imitations of Sappho's style. Evidence suggests that she had several brothers, married a wealthy man named Cercylas, and had a daughter named Cleis. describes her as pantelos mikra, quite tiny. This resurgence was helped by the discovery in 1896 of many ancient texts in a rubbish dump at Oxyrhynchus – an ancient site, that saw the rediscovery of many poems and fragments of the works of Sappho. Sappho, also spelled (in the Aeolic dialect spoken by the poet) Psappho, (born c. 610, Lesbos [Greece]—died c. 570 bce), Greek lyric poet greatly admired in all ages for the beauty of her writing style. There hovers forever around you delight: A beauty desired.”. Sappho’s legacy is her poetry, though most of it is lost. A fragment from Sappho that is dedicated to Charaxus has survived.

Aphrodite is the group’s tutelary divinity and inspiration. Sometimes this has been viewed of as a girls finishing school, with training for young girls before they get married. [22] Sappho's father is not mentioned in any of her surviving works, but Campbell suggests that this detail may have been based on a now-lost poem. In the thiasos the girls were educated and initiated into grace and elegance for seduction and love.

Sappho was born on the island of Lesbos, Greece, to an aristocratic family. The difficulties of the Aeolic Greek metre, also means there is considerable variance in English translations. Beyond her poetry, she is well known as a symbol of love and desire between women,[4] with the English words sapphic and lesbian being derived from her own name and the name of her home island respectively.

She ranks with Archilochus and Alcaeus, among Greek poets, for her ability to impress readers with a lively sense of her personality. Unfortunately, much of her poetry has been lost, although some poems have been painstakingly pieced together through surviving fragments. [19] These legends appear to have originated in the renaissance – around 1550, Jerome Cardan wrote that Gregory Nazianzen had Sappho's work publicly destroyed, and at the end of the sixteenth century Joseph Justus Scaliger claimed that Sappho's works were burned in Rome and Constantinople in 1073 on the orders of Pope Gregory VII.

I almost die. She was born around 615 B.C. The only contemporary source which refers to Sappho's life is her own body of poetry, and scholars are skeptical of biographical readings of it. She appears to have attracted a group of female students who were interested in the teachings and poetry of Sappho. [15] However, the name appears to have been invented by a comic poet: the name "Kerkylas" comes from the word "κέρκος" (kerkos), a possible meaning of which is "penis", and is not otherwise attested as a name,[40] while "Andros", as well as being the name of a Greek island, is a form of the Greek word "ἀνήρ" (aner), which means man. Includes Plato, Aristotle, Socrates and Hippocrates. [144] Ovid's Heroides 15 is written as a letter from Sappho to her supposed love Phaon, and when it was first rediscovered in the 15th century was thought to be a translation of an authentic letter of Sappho's.

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