80 Sappho

Sappho was an ancient Greek poet who lived on the island of Lesbos around 600 BC. Although her work survives today mainly only in fragments, she was a widely known and highly regarded poet throughout the ancient world. The majority of her work is about loving women, and she is the inspiration for both of the words "sapphic" and "lesbian."

Because she is one of history's most celebrated lesbians, I think it is appropriate to assign to the minor planet given her name the linked-venus symbol, a common symbol of love between women. Even though this symbol did not appear in the public consciousness until the 1970s, and even though a more contemporaneous symbol of lesbianism would be the violet, as garlands and crowns of violets were used in Sappho's poems to symbolize love and desire, I think the modern symbol is both easily recognizable and consonant with the symbology as a whole.

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