Sappho

Artist: Erastus Dow Palmer (American, Pompey, New York 1817–1904 Albany, New York)

Date: 1855; carved 1861

Medium: Marble

Dimensions: 16 1/2 x 16 1/4 in. (41.9 x 41.3 cm)

Classification: Sculpture

Credit Line: Gift of Clevepak Corporation, 1986

Accession Number: 1986.85

Description

Palmer depicted the Greek lyric poetess Sappho "as she stands contemplating vacancy, with her hair and drapery moved by the sighing winds of Lesbos, and a heart overflowing with grief from neglected love." Although it may be difficult today to identify Sappho, contemporary viewers, more of whom were familiar with classical literature, would have recognized her.

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