The famous 20th century Greek poet, George Seferis, was celebrated at the Hellenic Residence in London on Monday the 27th November. The occasion was the 60th anniversary of Seferis’ being awarded the Nobel Prize for poetry, and was held under the auspices of the Greek Ambassador, Mr Yannis Tsaousis, in the presence of the Prime Minister of the Hellenic Republic, Mr Kyriakos Mitsotakis. The setting at the Ambassador’s residence was very fitting, as Seferis lived and served there as Greek ambassador to the UK from 1957-1961.
The Greek Embassy in London has now launched an exhibition, “George Seferis: the man, the poet, the diplomat,” which will be on permanent display in the ‘Seferis Office’ and open to the public at the Hellenic Residence with a plethora of objects, works and documents relating to Seferis’ life, poetry and diplomatic career. The exhibition builds upon an initiative by the President of the Hellenic Republic, Ms Katerina Sakellaropoulou, which led to the donation of 32 objects from the Anna London & Nikos Paisis collection to the Greek Embassy.
Professor Roderick Beaton, ex Korais chair at King’s College London, was among the distinguished guests and has now been honoured by having the reading room next to the ‘Seferis Office’ named after him for his lifelong contributions to Modern Greek Studies and his love of Greece.
Our own Dr Dimitra Tzanidaki-Kreps was grateful to be invited to this prestigious event. For the last 24 years Dimitra has taught Seferis, among many other Modern Greek authors, as part of her “My Mother’s sin and other stories” module for Reading’s Classics undergraduates. Dimitra sent us this reel https://www.facebook.com/reel/2020083211681431 with photos from the evening and with one of Seferis’ well known short poems «Just a little more» set to music by the Greek legendary composer Mikis Theodorakis:
Just a little more
and we will see the almonds in bloom.
Just a little more
and we will see the marbles glitter,
glitter in the sun
and the waves of the sea.
Just a little more,
so we can rise a little higher.