Born around 630 BC on the Greek Island of Lesbos, Sappho is now regarded as the greatest lyrical poet of Greece. Her work survives only in fragments, yet her influence extends throughout Western literature, fuelled by the speculations and romances which have gathered around her name, her story, her sexuality. "The Sappho Companion" brings together many different kinds of work, ranging from blue-stocking appreciations to juicy fantasies. We see her image change, recreated in Ovid's poetry and Boccaccio's tales, in translations by Pope, Rossetti and Swinburne, Baudelaire, and H.D., in the modern versions of Eavan Boland, Carol Rumens, and Jeanette Winterson. Artists, too, have felt Sappho's power, and the, "Companion" contains a rich variety of illustrations: classical statues and pre-Raphaelite paintings, Roman mosaics, and Romantic pornography.
...it's a happy and catholic selection of texts ranging from translations to poems and parts of novels...
"...lively book...is sure to give a wider view of this primary writer, and provide easier access to a forbiddingly remote land and work." --Publishers Weekly
"...Margaret Reynolds has collected bits and pieces of all these Sapphos into a single, diverting volume. The book is like a plate assembled at a vast literary buffet- a dab of this, a morsel of that, the sweet, the salty, the delectable, the piquant, and, occasionally, the cloying." --Salon.com
"An excellent example of the transformative power of literature and imagination, this volume is recommended." --Library Journal
"chock-full of literary references, illustrations and analysis, this is a must for all fans" --Curve
"Reynolds has really done her homework...manages to take an extraordinary outpouring of scholarship about Sappho and make it come alive." --Women's Review of Books