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Homosexuality in Greece and RomeA Sourcebook of Basic Documents$
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Thomas Hubbard

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780520223813

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520223813.001.0001

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Archaic Greek Lyric

Archaic Greek Lyric

(p.21) Chapter 1 Archaic Greek Lyric
Homosexuality in Greece and Rome


University of California Press

The homoerotic themes abound in Greek lyric poetry reflect an aristocratic culture in which homosexual relations were at home in the symposium, athletics, and even civic/religious ritual. The earliest surviving lyric poetry is by Archilochus. Archaic Greek lyric generally describes age-differential pederastic relations, although there is some evidence for relations or attractions among age-equal youths in Alcman, Theognis, and Pindar. Only one text seems unequivocally to describe attraction to a slave, but Anacreon's Cleobulus or Ibycus' Euryalus could also very well be slaves. Fragments from the poems by Archilochus, Alcman, Sappho, Solon, Anacreon, Ibycus, Theognis, Simonides, and Pindar are presented.

Keywords:   archaic Greek lyric, homosexual relations, Archilochus, Alcman, Sappho, Solon, Anacreon, Ibycus, Theognis

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