T.S. Eliot, Giorgos Seferis and the Anzacs Sport and the Global Greeks

Steve Georgakis


The Waste Landby T.S. Eliot was published eighty years ago and with the passing away of thelast Anzac, Alec Campbell, it is timely to look at the reference Giorgos Seferis makes to theAnzacs, one of his rare references to Australia. Lines 199-201 of the “Fire Sermon” sectionread thus:

O the moon shone bright on Mrs. Porter

And on her daughter

They washed their feet in soda water


When Eliot annotated lines 199-201, his sentence ran thus: “I do not know the origin ofthe ballad from which these lines are taken: it was reported to me from Sydney, Australia”1Though some changes in the annotations did occur in later editions of The Waste Land, thisnote did not vary thereafter.

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