More about Greek Migration: The Poet Sappho Safe on Sydney Rocks, 2014
At the end of the Second World War almost 1 million Greeks were homeless and many of them migrated, some to Australia. Melbourne has one of the largest populations of people of Greek descent outside of Greece. However the first Greek person to migrate to Australia landed in Sydney in 1835 – her name was Katerina Georgia Plessos. A refugee of the Greek Independence wars she came to Sydney with her husband Major James Crummer. She is said to be one of the last people to speak to the poet Lord Byron before his death.
Sappho was born around 620BC on the island of Lesbos. She, along with her fellow poet and reputed lover Alcaeus, is described as one of the nine lyric poets of Ancient Greece. It is thought that she was deported across the Mediterranean to Sicily because of her support for Alcaeus who was involved in a political struggle on Lesbos. Although legend has it that she committed suicide by throwing herself off Leucadian cliffs, in reality she returned to Lesbos and lived into old age.