Sapphic Poetry

  • Sarah ParkerEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-02721-6_183-1

Definition

The Ancient Greek poet Sappho was understood to represent both lyric poetry and female creativity, and was an inspiring figure for many Victorian women poets. Sappho also became a lens through which female literary production was critiqued. The Victorian Age also saw the recovery and translation of much of Sappho’s work into English, providing broader access to the ancient texts. Sappho’s poetic legacy further provided an inspiring image of homoerotic community between women.

Introduction

In the Victorian era, the Ancient Greek poet Sappho was repeatedly lauded as the greatest poet of all time. She was understood to represent both lyric poetry as a genre and female creativity specifically. Thus for many women poets of the nineteenth century, Sappho of Lesbos was an immensely inspiring figure. Women poets were often referred to by the epithets that associated them with this originating icon. For example, dedicatory verses to Mary Robinson in 1806 described her as the “British...

Keywords

Sappho Poetry, lyric poetry Greek literature Mythology Homoeroticism Women’s higher education Sexuality 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Loughborough UniversityLoughboroughUK

Section editors and affiliations

  • Emily Morris
    • 1
  1. 1.St. Thomas More CollegeUniversity of SaskatchewanSaskatoonCanada