Monday, April 5, 2004

Many, because orchids

The Hellenistic poet Meleager wrote that Sappho's poems were "few, but roses" and this phrase, with its emphasis on quality, was taken up by 19th century aristocrats and 20th century urban and cultural planners. Reyner Banham reminds us of its implied corollary, "Multitudes are weeds" and suggests replacing it with "a new slogan that cuts across all academic categories: 'Many, because orchids'."

Many, because orchids. I have no idea what that means, but it sounds wonderful.

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