In English
Fragment 105a of Sappho in Greek
Sappho
Sappho in Greek

οιον το γλυκυμᾱλον ερευθεται ακρωι επ' υσδωι

ακρον επ' ακροτατωι λελαθοντο δε μᾱλοδροπηες ·

ου μᾱν εκλελαθοντ' αλλ' ουκ εδυναντ' επικεσθαι.

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METRICAL SCHEME

Epic meter (dactylic hexameter)

 

VOCABULARY NOTES

οιον = οἱον

γλυκυμᾱλον = μελιμηλον

υσδωι = οζωι

επικεσθαι < εφικνεομαι

 

Commentary

This fragment was preserved through quotation by Syrianus in his commentary on Hermogenes' textbook Περι ιδεων, which cites this poem as an example of the type of style that appeals directly to all five senses by describing things that give them pleasure.

The charm of this fragment lies not only in its sensual appeal but also in the sparkling caprice of the third line, which pirouettes like a young dancer as it changes its mind about what has just been said about "forgetting" the apple.

Since this was part of a marriage hymn, the apple can be assumed to represent the bride.