Famous homosexual ancient Greeks and Romans

Scaeva

Ad Honorem
Oct 2012
5,392
#21
The emperor Elagabalus was most likely homosexual.

He lavished favors of male couriers in the Imperial court who were his lovers, his marriages to women were all short-lived and ended in divorce, and he had a long relationship with his Ionian Greek chariot driver who he openly referred to as his husband. He also later had a public marriage ceremony with a male Greek athlete, and was found of wearing women's cosmetics and supposedly offered money to any physician that could perform a sex change on him.

Today he'd probably be considered transgender.
 
May 2013
1,696
Colorado
#22
"There was no stain on Caesar’s reputation for chastity except his intimacy with King Nicomedes IV. Cicero indeed has written in sundry letters that Caesar was led by the king’s attendants to the royal apartments, that he lay on a couch arrayed in purple, and that the virginity of this son of Venus was lost in Bithynia."

Suetonius' Lives of the Twelve Caesars
 

Scaeva

Ad Honorem
Oct 2012
5,392
#23
"There was no stain on Caesar’s reputation for chastity except his intimacy with King Nicomedes IV. Cicero indeed has written in sundry letters that Caesar was led by the king’s attendants to the royal apartments, that he lay on a couch arrayed in purple, and that the virginity of this son of Venus was lost in Bithynia."

Suetonius' Lives of the Twelve Caesars
Suetonius' source is Cicero however, one of Caesar's political opponents.

I think that is why at best one should be cautious when claiming for certain that Caesar & Nicomedes were lovers. It may have been true, but it is equally possible that the stories could have been political mudslinging.
 
Mar 2010
424
#24
Modern concepts and definitions of "homosexual" and "bisexual" really can't be applied to ancient Greece and Rome. Their whole outlook on love and sexuality was very different from ours. And the Greeks were different from the Romans, as well.

Matthew
To which I would add that among the Greeks themselves were differing views of homosexuality. Only a few city states tolerated it and those were derided by most of the others. Of course, reading the history ("Hellas" was more than just Athens and Sparta, a lot more) one can be confused with then common "interstate" jibes and insults. Those can make a practice or attitude seem more prevalent than reality.
Even in Athens the sexual goings-on in the symposium were condemned there.
 
Jan 2015
5,153
Ontario, Canada
#25
I doubt the truth of this story if the context of this supposed gay encounter between Caesar and Nicomedes of Bythinia was that Caesar went to Nicomedes to ask for support against Mithridates. Allegedly Nicomedes accepted because Caesar was such a good lover. Yeah those are the reasons why you should make military alliances.
 
Nov 2013
842
Lykaonia
#27
Sorry but they had also wifes and relations to women. They was pairs of eromenoi , it was an educational method in a part of the poleis world to give the experience from the older to the younger. When some of this friendship relations and human love turn also sexual than it is far away to be 100%, it would be also in the ancient world easy for somebody who wanted to make them under to take some speculations or just out of some cases present it as a whole truth. Its like saying it was a rule to have sexual contact with men to came into the sacred band of Theba. What I highly doubt. I have seen here in the forum some posts from poleis laws about homosexuality and pederasty, if I find again the topic I will post the link so everybody can understand that they was far away from promoting such actings.
 

tornada

Ad Honoris
Mar 2013
15,289
India
#28
Sorry but they had also wifes and relations to women. They was pairs of eromenoi , it was an educational method in a part of the poleis world to give the experience from the older to the younger. When some of this friendship relations and human love turn also sexual than it is far away to be 100%, it would be also in the ancient world easy for somebody who wanted to make them under to take some speculations or just out of some cases present it as a whole truth. Its like saying it was a rule to have sexual contact with men to came into the sacred band of Theba. What I highly doubt. I have seen here in the forum some posts from poleis laws about homosexuality and pederasty, if I find again the topic I will post the link so everybody can understand that they was far away from promoting such actings.
Oh. Everything I've read on the Sacred Band said they were lovers. I'd be happy to see your source. But I'm not dismissing the idea that they had wives. Which is why I put Bisexual there as well. Between societal expectations to marry and produce heirs, and more liberal approach to homosexuality as compared to later times in the Medieval Era, I suppose its impossible to say who were properly homosexual and who were bi-sexual. Its possible that such linear definitions would have been quite incomprehensible to the Greeks themselves.
 

Lowell2

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,541
California
#30
How do you know Julius Caesar was homosexual?
Last I recall that was only a rumour started by the Senate to discredit him. That Caesar had given sexual favours to the King of Bythinia so that he would support the Romans, specifically the Roman general Marcus Minucius Thermus, against Mithridates VI. Of course nothing supports this claim as it was just the rants of the more conservative factions in Rome against Caesar.
Not only that but he was well known as a philanderer with the wives of other Roman leaders. He certainly seemed enamored of Cleopatra.
 

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