- Purchase/rental options available:
Mythic references in Sappho's poetry convey meaning and exert pragmatic force by bringing the mythic past and the performative present together. This article considers prayers, weddings, and other occasions when a speaker attempts to bring about a desired outcome in the present by evoking mythic precedents. Although these mythic references in Sappho's poems are often very brief, they carry the same pragmatic force as mythic narratives used elsewhere in Greek poetry and magical texts. Through these references, speakers in Sappho demonstrate narrative authority and exert pragmatic force in their contemporary performance context.