|Publisher||CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform|
|Publication Date||March 21, 2014|
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In the first volume of HOMOSEXUALITY - The Lives of the Fabulous Men Who Preferred Men – Ancient Greece I stated that I had been doing research for years on Greeks, Romans and Florentines, but that the recent law passed in my home country, France, allowing men to marry men, acted as a catalyst to put my notes into publishable form. This second volume, directed at valiant and worthy Romans who preferred, sexually, men and boys, will be more difficult because Roman lives described as valiant and worthy are not nearly as clear-cut as were those of the Greeks, Greeks who courageously fought at Marathon and the Thermopylae, who defeated the Persians, an immense victory of vital importance to us today. The paradox in Rome was this: On the one hand we had Caesar who never lived down his vile reputation as having been the beloved of King Nicomedes of Bithynia, while on the other hand, the Bithynian boy Antinous was imposed on Rome by Emperor Hadrian. Soldiers didn’t refrain from mocking Caesar, often right outside his tent, but their ribbing was always good-natured and Caesar’s reputation never really suffered. In fact, the soldiers respected and perhaps even loved the man. Yet for the everyday Roman there was no paradox of any form. When he was horny and wanted sex, he turned to what was closest at hand, be it a boy or a girl. It had been a rough haul from the simple beauty of Greek love to virile Roman barbarism, where Caesar alone may have been directly responsible for 1,200,000 deaths, youths who certainly had their whole lives before them, and Sulla lectured senators while on the Circus Maximus below 9,000 lads were screaming for pity while their throats were being slit. A bumpy road from the simple purity of Achilles and Patroclus, Alexander and Hephaestion, Apollo and Hyacinth. If we put aside painted Roman faces and plucked buttocks hairs, if we discount a stark naked emperor stalking well-endowed sailors, kings castrating catamites by the hundreds, slaves bought with good teeth and thick members, if we overlook the Satyriconean horrors of greed, incest, pedophilia, et al., there were nonetheless countless untold stories of simpler, more earthly encounters, of first kisses and sighs, first vows and first bliss, of candle-lit meals between lovers, reflected in the eyes of he who literally takes your breath away, of a lad’s stirrings when he sees his friends naked, for the first time, on the playing field. Infinitely more numerous than Tiberius’ filth were the moments when one’s throat chocked up at the sight of a bared chest, at the view of navel down, of the boy in the baths who hides his engorging member because he sees you and finds you pretty. And the greatest happiness of all, returning home to a warm boy warming an open bed, a lad awaiting you, anonymous to the world, but the entire world to you. This, too, the Romans certainly knew—because this is eternal.