Roman Homosexuality: Ideologies of Masculinity in Classical Antiquity

By Craig A. Williams | Go to book overview

APPENDIX 2

Marriage between Males

Scattered throughout the Roman sources we find allusions to marriages between males. The earliest relevant source is a scathing remark by Cicero to the effect that in his youth Mark Antony, having started out by living the life of a whore, was taken in by Curio, who "established you in a fixed and stable marriage [matrimonium], as if he had given you a stola" ("sed cito Curio intervenit qui te a meretricio quaestu abduxit et, tamquam stolam dedisset, in matrimonio stabili et certo conlocavit," Cic. Phil. 2.44). 1 This remark can, however, hardly be taken as serious evidence for social practices; it is rather a typically hyperbolic piece of Ciceronian invective. These are fighting words, and the rhetoric makes the point that Curio and Antony were involved in a sexual relationship in which Antony, the younger partner, played the receptive role; the language of marriage is invoked so as to heap further scorn on Antony. Not only had he played the "woman's role" in the sexual relationship, but he was as much under Curio's control as a wife is under her husband's authority. Indeed, the centrality of the issue of subjugation is brought resolutely home in the sentence that immediately follows: "No boy purchased for lust's sake was ever as much under his master's control as you were under Curio's" ("nemo umquam puer emptus libidinis causa tam fuit in domini potestate quam tu in Curionis," 2.45). With tam ... quam ("as much ... as") we can compare the clause tamquam stolam dedisset ("as if he had given you astola") in the preceding sentence; Cicero's description, in other words, does not imply that Curio and Antony were joined in

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Roman Homosexuality: Ideologies of Masculinity in Classical Antiquity
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Roman Homosexuality - Ideologies of Masculinity in Classical Antiquity *
  • Acknowledgments *
  • Contents *
  • Abbreviations xi
  • Introduction 3
  • 1 - Roman Traditions Slaves, Prostitutes, and Wives 15
  • 2 - Greece and Rome 62
  • 3 - The Concept of Stuprum 96
  • 4 - Effeminacy and Masculinity 125
  • 5 - Sexual Roles and Identities 160
  • Conclusions 225
  • Appendix 1 - The Rhetoric of Nature and Same-Sex Practices 231
  • Appendix 2 - Marriage Between Males 245
  • Appendix 3 - A Note on the Sources 253
  • Notes 259
  • Works Cited 367
  • Index of Passages Cited 376
  • General Index 391
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