HomoSexuality in the Roman Legions

Jan 2015
3,538
Australia
I'll leave Cachi to reply to his end of things. Do you have an example of a public Roman figure in the history of the republic (or even Empire) who was openly with a male sexual partner of any kind? I'll wait.
 
Apr 2019
27
Brazil
I'll leave Cachi to reply to his end of things. Do you have an example of a public Roman figure in the history of the republic (or even Empire) who was openly with a male sexual partner of any kind? I'll wait.
I do, and I gave several examples already.

After spending hours composing that text in reply to that other user, which is not easy for me as someone who does not speak English as a first language, and as someone who, unlike his interlocutors, prefers to support his opinions with references to experts in the field and check and quote their studies before clicking the reply bottom, I really do not feel like discussing the same thing just because certain people have goldfish memory. Bye.
 
Apr 2019
27
Brazil
Oh, and by the way, it is clear to me that you're even more out of your depth than that other poster. I know better than to try to debate people who arrogantly dress up ignorance as fact. At least the other poster gives the impression that he has read a book or two on Rome.
 

AlpinLuke

Forum Staff
Oct 2011
26,855
Italy, Lago Maggiore
This is the passage of Pliny The Younger [for who wants to read the original text], mentioned by Rafe.

Cum libros Galli legerem, quibus ille parenti
ausus de Cicerone dare est palmamque decusque,
lascivum inveni lusum Ciceronis et illo
spectandum ingenio, quo seria condidit et quo
humanis salibus multo varioque lepore
magnorum ostendit mentes gaudere virorum.
Nam queritur, quod fraude mala frustratus amantem
paucula cenato sibi debita savia Tiro
tempore noctumo subtraxerit. His ego lectis
"cur post haec," inquam, "nostros celamus amores
nullumque in medium timidi damus atque fatemur
Tironisque dolos, Tironis nosse fugaces
blanditias et furta novas addentia flammas?
I repeat that in a discussion like this to quote the original Latin texts [with English translation, of course] is useful. In this case Rafe has posted the English translation.
 
Likes: Rafe
Apr 2019
27
Brazil
8. I left out a letter from typing fast. I was citing Ammianus. At least we know that you have not really read that either, or you could have figured this out pretty easily.
I forgot to reply to that portion of cachibatches's post.

First, I would like to draw attention to a fact that this poster continues to ignore, that a culture and its values can change over time, becoming more or less restrictive of certain sexual or non-sexual behaviors. Thus, it should not be immediately assumed that Romans of the Hadrian era had the same values as those of the Republican era. And it should be assumed even less that Romans of the heavily-Christianized fourth century had the same values as those of the first century.

There is evidence that at the end of the third century CE, a transformation towards attitudes less sympathetic to homosexuality was already taking place, since, according to Amy Richlin, homoerotic literature begins to disappear from the Roman empire around this period, pressured both by Christianity and by certain strands of Roman Stoicism.

It is to be expected that Ammianus, who was born in an even later period, and one even more influenced by Christianity - namely, the mid-fourth century - should be even more puritanical in this regard. After all, he spent basically his whole life under Christian emperors.

Indeed, considering that Ammianus wrote about the history of Rome from the end of the first century to the year 378 - no brief subject - it is most likely that he published his writings after the year 380, when Christianity was already the state religion.

It is not surprising, therefore, that what he had to say about homosexuality was negative.

This, however, says nothing about the values of pagans who lived in times when Rome was less Christianized.

It is of interest to note that the only time that cachibatches succeeded in quoting a Roman historian who is unfriendly to homosexuality, the quote not being the result of biased translations of scholars of the modern West, it came from a figure who lived in Christian times.
 
Jan 2015
3,538
Australia
Oh, and by the way, it is clear to me that you're even more out of your depth than that other poster. I know better than to try to debate people who arrogantly dress up ignorance as fact. At least the other poster gives the impression that he has read a book or two on Rome.
You mentioned some poets, etc, who we agreed were not public figures because they were, and these are your words, "the lowest of the low" in Roman society. Who are some knights/senators/generals who had open male partners? You know, actual public figures.
 
Apr 2019
27
Brazil
You mentioned some poets, etc, who we agreed were not public figures because they were, and these are your words, "the lowest of the low" in Roman society. Who are some knights/senators/generals who had open male partners? You know, actual public figures.
You're very confused as to what I said. I never said that the poets were among the lowest of the lows - I said just the opposite, that they were great and renowned celebrities of their day. I also said that one should not conflate different types of artist - for example, poets with actors or dancers - because the latter the Romans saw as akin to prostitutes. And while actors of both sexes did get involved rather often with powerful men, I never dropped their names because they're a special case.

And I did mention politicians in this sense. But you, like that other guy, have a way to ignore contrary evidence (that special pleading again). Go read my posts again if you want to see these names, because if this conversation should go somewhere, instead of just running in circles, it is necessary that I do not repeat myself just because of the laziness of certain people. I am already violating my own promise to ignore you and to no longer repeat myself just so I can help you again. I won't do that a third time, though.
 
Last edited:
Jan 2015
3,538
Australia
You're very confused as to what I said. I never said that the poets were among the lowest of the lows - I said just the opposite, that they were great and renowned celebrities of their day. What I said is that one should not conflate different types of artist - for example, poets with actors or dancers - because the latter the Romans saw as akin to prostitutes. And while actors of both sexes did get involved rather often with powerful men, I never dropped their names because they're a special case.

And I did mention politicians in this sense. But you, like that other guy, have a way to ignore contrary evidence (that special pleading again). Go read my posts again if you want to see these names, because if this conversation should go somewhere, instead of just running in circles, it is necessary that I do not repeat myself just because of the laziness of certain people. I am already violating my own promise to ignore you and to no longer repeat myself just so I can help you again. I won't do that a third time, though.
Who are they? Give me the names. It should only take you a moment. Poets certainly were not public figures in ancient Rome; they were writing for a hyper elite of the educated upper classes, their private/personal morality didn't require wider public approval.
 
Apr 2019
27
Brazil
Who are they? Give me the names. It should only take you a moment. Poets certainly were not public figures in ancient Rome; they were writing for a hyper elite of the educated upper classes, their private/personal morality didn't require wider public approval.
It should only take you a moment to read my posts, too, Caesar.

And as for what you have said about poets, again your ignorance of Roman culture is shown. Poets were not only known to a "hyper-educated" elite. Proof of this is that references to people like Virgil and Ovid and their verses are extremely common in Roman graffiti, which, as modern scholars see it, were made by ordinary people of the lower class.

And as I have said before, the biography that Suetonius wrote about Virgil proves the argument I made: "whenever he appeared in public in Rome, where he very rarely went, he would take refuge in the nearest house, to avoid those who followed and pointed him out."

So, Virgil was a figure of enormous celebrity in his day, much more than those little politicians with whom you are so obsessed.

And again I violate my promises, just because I can't stand to see someone so hopelessly out of his depth. Won't happen a fourth time, I swear!
 

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