Thursday, 13 March 2008
Has the word LESBIAN gone now? Do we not remember our history?
Lesbian writer Emma Donoghue found that the term lesbian (with its modern meaning) was in use in the English language from at least the 17th century. A 1732 book by William King, The Toast, uses "lesbian loves" and "tribadism" interchangeably : "she loved Women in the same Manner as Men love them; she was a Tribad".
Sappho pictured here, is the incomparable lesbian poetess who takes us back to 7th Century B,C. This was time of outstanding importance in ancient history. Old civilizations were falling and new powers were rising.
Sappho's poetry was delicate and refined at a time before the great and perfect sculpture's who would go on and prove themselves to the test of times.
Sappho was born on or near 612 B,C.on the island of Lesbos a plentiful island off the coast of Greece. Eresos the town in which Sappho lived was ravaged by a ten year war in 606 B,C. The resident of the six towns of Lesbos were known as Lesbians and fought as one against the Athenians.
Sappho was always regarded in antiquity as a woman endowed with wisdom as well as with the gift of song; in an epigram written upon her by Pinytos it is said that 'her wise sayings are immortal'. Socrates classed her amongst the sophoi, "the Wise"
Unfortunately the early Church did not permit any appreciation of wisdom which it may have possessed to out balance prejudices: Sappho's poetry and wisdom were distroyed, burnt by the early Christians. Only a few fragments survived, the following lines are the lesbian Sappho's.
"Wealth without goodness is not harmless neighbour, but the uniting of both is the summit of fortune."
"you cannot bend a stiff mind."
Long live Lesbians