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  9 - Sapphic Yearning  
  Sapphic Yearning  
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  08/06/07 We are History  
  Most historians nowadays are of the opinion that Sappho didn't really run an academy for girls, and that the whole thing was invented by the prudish Victorians as an alternative explanation for her constantly being surrounded by girls. But maybe the starch-knickered buffoons were onto something after all. As the world's most famous lesbian (in both the physical and the geographical sense), Sappho's love for the ladies is very much evident, even from the few surviving fragments of her work that weren't torched by over-sensitive Popes and the like. So, what better way of attracting hordes of sexy girls than by opening up her own academy? The canny Tenth Muse knew what she was doing.

Sappho ranks very highly on my list of top historical figures. I say "very highly" because I've never been able to decide on a definite order for them. Some people might say that arranging figures from such diverse fields as politics, art, science and philosophy into a ranked list is not only impossible, but also objectifies and thus belittles their individual achievements. To this, I say: "Balls." Certain people from history are very clearly better than others. Gandhi is better than Vlad the Impaler. Jesus is better than Jeffrey Dahmer, the Milwaukee Cannibal. So it follows that everybody else in history can be arranged in order as well. Having settled this matter, I'll let you know when my list is complete. Who will come out on top? Benjamin Franklin was one of the sharpest and most inventive minds in history, but would he have won in a fight with Boudicca? On the one hand, Charles Darwin revolutionised both the field of biology and the human perception of the self. On the other hand, Peter Paul Rubens painted a lot of cool pictures of naked fat girls. Who made the greatest contribution? It's a tough one. These are the imponderables that I must... ponder.
  They're like sex, except I'm having them!  
© George Hutcheon 2007