People - Ancient Greece: Erinna
Ancient Greek poet who flourished during 600 BC.
Erinna in Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities (1898)
A poetess, and the friend of Sappho. She flourished about the year B.C. 610. All that is known of her is contained in the following words of Eustathius ( ad Il. ii. p. 327): “Erinna was born in Lesbos, or in Rhodes, or in Teos, or in Telos, the little island near Cnidus. She was a poetess, and wrote a poem called ‘the Distaff’ (Ἠλακάτη） in the Aeolic and Doric dialect; it consisted of 300 hexameter lines. She was the friend of Sappho, and died unmarried. It was thought that her verses rivalled those of Homer. She was only nineteen years of age when she died.” Chained by her mother to the spinning-wheel, Erinna had as yet known the charm of existence in imagination alone. She probably expressed in her poem the restless and aspiring thoughts which crowded on her youthful mind as she pursued her monotonous work. We possess at the present day only four lines by Erinna; for though three epigrams ascribed to her are given by Schneidewin in his Delectus Poësis Graecae Elegiacae (Göttingen, 1839), two at least are not genuine.
Erinna in Wikipedia
Erinna (Greek: Ἤριννα) was a Greek poet, a contemporary and friend of Sappho, a native of Rhodes or the adjacent island of Telos or even possibly Tenos, who flourished about 600 BC (according to Eusebius, she was well known in 352 BC). Her best-known poem was the Distaff (Greek Ἠλᾰκάτη), written in a mixture of Aeolic and Doric Greek and consisting of 300 dactylic hexameter lines, of which only four were extant until 1928. Three epigrams ascribed to her in the Palatine anthology probably belong to a later date, though some debate on the first epigram exists.
In 1928, a papyrus (PSI 1090) was found that contained 54 fragmentary lines by the poet, in six pieces now located in the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana. The poem is a lament (Greek θρῆνος) on the death of her friend Baucis (Greek Βαυκίς), a disciple of Sappho, shortly before her wedding.
Camillo Neri, in an Italian work assessing the surviving fragments and testimonies to her, reconstructs the poet's original name as "Herinna" (Ἥριννα). She is also sometimes named "Erina".
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