Alexander the Great & Hephaestion

Mar 2012
2,344
#2
No source says that they were that I know of.

Alexander's sexuality is all over the board in the ancient sources.

Plutarch implies that Alexander despised homosexuality. Arrian is silent on the matter. Rufus mentions in one line that Alexander had a homosexual relationship with Boagas, but mostly condemns his relationships with loose women. In THE GREEK ALEXANDER ROMANCE, it is mentioned that Alexander is in love with a young man whose name I cannot remember, though that is a poor source...more like myth telling. Apparently, there is a very ancient source that says that he loved boys, though I have not been able to find it.

No source that I have personally read or heard of describes a relationship with Hephaestion.
 
Jan 2015
5,416
Ontario, Canada
#3
I tried to research this as well. Other than some servant called Bagoas and claims about Hephaestion there aren't that many claims. Even then the sources are not reliable on the matter, it comes off more like gossip.

As a young man the implications were that Alexander may have not displayed sexual interest so that his mother hired a courtesan from Thessaly to become his concubine. Alexander did not marry or take concubines apparently until he had conquered the Persians, he took Roxanne, two daughters of Darius and Barsine the wife of Memnon (or Mentor).

On the other hand he also said (can't remember the context) that he was most vulnerable when with a woman. So the claims that he was homosexual or had male lovers are not reliable, but for the most part he doesn't seem to display a strong interest in women either, at least until around 327 when he married Roxana (supposedly also the year in which Barsine gave birth to his son Herakles). Then in 324 when he married Stateira and Parysatis.
 
Sep 2014
835
Texas
#4
Mary Renault was pretty obsessed with Alexander being Heph's lover. She wrote about them in her novelizations. Alexander thought highly of Heph and once said that he too is Alexander when the Persian queen erreed.

With men like Alexander, he is what you want him to be. I personally do not like him (proPersian here). He could be noble but in the cups, he burned down Persepolis. The only thing is, Alexander belonged to an era when being bisexual was OK but being gay was not cool. And then as now, we don't choose what we are.
 
Sep 2014
835
Texas
#7
Parysatis wasn't daughter of Darius III. She was daughter of Artaxerxes III. Second daughter of Darius was taken by Hephaestion.
I know Alexander wanted his and Hephaestion's children to be related, but is there any indication that Heph was even interested in women? He seemed awfully devoted to Alexander, and I'm not putting him down, I just never thought of him as being interested in women.
 
Sep 2016
885
Georgia
#8
I know Alexander wanted his and Hephaestion's children to be related, but is there any indication that Heph was even interested in women? He seemed awfully devoted to Alexander, and I'm not putting him down, I just never thought of him as being interested in women.
We know almost nothing about that. Maybe he had relationships, but Ancient authors just didn't focus on them. Hephaestion wasn't the one who they were writing about, it was Alexander. Everything primarily revolves around him ( whether it would be battles, sieges, policy, relationships and etc.). Even when describing his famous battles, authors primarily focus on Alexander's flank. For example, not that much written about what was happening on the left flank of Parmenion at Granicus, Issus or Gaugamela.

However, at the time of Alexander's own death, eight months after Hephaestion's, Drypetis ( second daughter of Darius III ) was still mourning the husband to whom she had been married for only four months. Hephaestion must've been kind to her at least.
 
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Sep 2014
835
Texas
#9
One of the things I taught when I did the Iliad, and this applies here is A woman is safe as long as her man, family or tribe was strong. When Heph died, his wife no longer had a protecti
 

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