STUDIES IN THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SEX, VOLUME II
PREFACE TO THE THIRD EDITION.
It has been remarked by Professor Wilhelm Ostwald that the problem of homosexuality is a problem left over to us by the Middle Ages, which for five hundred years dealt with inverts as it dealt with heretics and witches. To regard the matter thus is to emphasize its social and humanitarian interest rather than its biological and psychological significance. It is no doubt this human interest of the question of inversion, rather than its scientific importance, great as the latter is, which is mainly responsible for the remarkable activity with which the study of homosexuality has been carried on during recent years.
The result has been that, during the fourteen years that have passed since the last edition of this Study was issued, so vast an amount of work has been carried on in this field that the preparation of a new edition of the book has been a long and serious task. Nearly every page has been rewritten or enlarged and the Index of Authors consulted has more than doubled in length. The original portions of the book have been still more changed; sixteen new Histories have been added, selected from others in my possession as being varied, typical, and full.
These extensive additions to the volume have rendered necessary various omissions. Many of the shorter and less instructive Histories contained in earlier editions have been omitted, as well as three Appendices which no longer seem of sufficient interest to retain. In order to avoid undue increase in the size of this volume, already much larger than in the previous editions, a new Study of Eonism, or sexo-esthetic inversion, will be inserted in vol. v, where it will perhaps be at least as much in place as here.
PREFACE TO FIRST EDITION.
It was not my intention to publish a study of an abnormal manifestation of the sexual instinct before discussing its normal manifestations. It has happened, however, that this part of my work is ready first, and, since I thus gain a longer period to develop the central part of my subject, I do not regret the change of plan.
I had not at first proposed to devote a whole volume to sexual inversion. It may even be that I was inclined to slur it over as an unpleasant subject, and one that it was not wise to enlarge on. But I found in time that several persons for whom I felt respect and admiration were the congenital subjects of this abnormality. At the same time I realized that in England, more than in any other country, the law and public opinion combine to place a heavy penal burden and a severe social stigma on the manifestations of an instinct which to those persons who possess it frequently appears natural and normal. It was clear, therefore, that the matter was in special need of elucidation and discussion.
There can be no doubt that a peculiar amount of ignorance exists regarding the subject of sexual inversion. I know medical men of many years' general experience who have never, to their knowledge, come across a single case. We may remember, indeed, that some fifteen years ago the total number of cases recorded in scientific literature scarcely equaled those of British race which I have obtained, and that before my first cases were published not a single British case, unconnected with the asylum or the prison, had ever been recorded. Probably not a very large number of people are even aware that the turning in of the sexual instinct toward persons of the same sex can ever be regarded as inborn, so far as any sexual instinct is inborn. And very few, indeed, would not be surprised if it were possible to publish a list of the names of sexually inverted men and women who at the present time are honorably known in church, state, society, art, or letters. It could not be positively affirmed of all such persons that they were born inverted, but in most the inverted tendency seems to be instinctive, and appears at a somewhat early age. In any case, however, it must be realized that in this volume we are not dealing with subjects belonging to the lunatic asylum, or the prison. We are concerned with individuals who live in freedom, some of them suffering intensely from their abnormal organization, but otherwise ordinary members of society. In a few cases we are concerned with individuals whose moral or artistic ideals have widely influenced their fellows, who know nothing of the peculiar organization which has largely molded those ideals.
I am indebted to several friends for notes, observations, and correspondence on this subject, more especially to one, referred to as "Z.," and to another as "Q.," who have obtained a considerable number of reliable histories for me, and have also supplied many valuable notes; to "Josiah Flynt" (whose articles on tramps in Atlantic Monthly and Harper's Magazine have attracted wide attention) for an appendix on homosexuality among tramps; to Drs. Kiernan, Lydston, and Talbot for assistance at various points noted in the text; and to Dr. K., an American woman physician, who kindly assisted me in obtaining cases, and has also supplied an appendix. Other obligations are mentioned in the text.
All those portions of the book which are of medical or medico-legal interest, including most of the cases, have appeared during the last three years in the Alienist and Neurologist, the Journal of Mental Science, the Centralblatt fuer Nervenheilkunde, the Medico-legal Journal, and the Archivo delle Psicopatie Sessuale. The cases, as they appear in the present volume, have been slightly condensed, but nothing of genuine psychological interest has been omitted. Owing to some delay in the publication of the English edition of the work, a German translation by my friend, Dr. Hans Kurella, editor of the Centralblatt fuer Nervenheilkunde, has already appeared (1896) in the Bibliothek fuer Sozialwissenschaft. The German edition contains some matter which has finally been rejected from the English edition as of minor importance; on the other hand, much has been added to the English edition, and the whole carefully revised.
I have only to add that if it may seem that I have unduly ignored the cases and arguments brought forward by other writers, it is by no means because I wish to depreciate the valuable work done by my predecessors in this field. It is solely because I have not desired to popularize the results previously reached, but simply to bring forward my own results. If I had not been able to present new facts in what is perhaps a new light, I should not feel justified in approaching the subject of sexual inversion at all.
Homosexuality Among Animals—Among the Lower Human Races—The Albanians—The Greeks—The Eskimos—The Tribes of the Northwest United States—Homosexuality Among Soldiers in Europe—Indifference Frequently Manifested by European Lower Classes—Sexual Inversion at Rome—Homosexuality in Prisons—Among Men of Exceptional Intellect and Moral Leaders—Muret—Michelangelo—Winkelmann—Homosexuality in English History—Walt Whitman—Verlaine—Burton's Climatic Theory of Homosexuality—The Racial Factor—The Prevalence of Homosexuality Today.
THE STUDY OF SEXUAL INVERSION.
Westphal—Hoessli—Casper—Ulrichs—Krafft-Ebing—Moll—Fere—Kiernan— Lydston—Raffalovich—Edward Carpenter—Hirschfeld.
SEXUAL INVERSION IN MEN.
Relatively Undifferentiated State of the Sexual Impulse in Early Life—The Freudian View—Homosexuality in Schools—The Question of Acquired Homosexuality—Latent Inversion—Retarded Inversion—Bisexuality—The Question of the Invert's Truthfulness—Histories.
SEXUAL INVERSION IN WOMEN.
Prevalence of Sexual Inversion Among Women—Among Women of Ability—Among the Lower Races—Temporary Homosexuality in Schools, etc.—Histories—Physical and Psychic Characteristics of Inverted Women—The Modern Development of Homosexuality Among Women.
THE NATURE OF SEXUAL INVERSION.
Analysis of Histories—Race—Heredity—General Health—First Appearance of Homosexual Impulse—Sexual Precocity and Hyperesthesia—Suggestion and Other Exciting Causes of Inversion—Masturbation—Attitude Toward Women—Erotic Dreams—Methods of Sexual Relationship—Pseudo-sexual Attraction—Physical Sexual Abnormalities—Artistic and Other Aptitudes—Moral Attitude of the Invert.
THE THEORY OF SEXUAL INVERSION.
What is Sexual Inversion?—Causes of Diverging Views—The Theory of Suggestion Unworkable—Importance of the Congenital Element in Inversion—The Freudian Theory—Embryonic Hermaphroditism as a Key to Inversion—Inversion as a Variation or "Sport"—Comparison with Color-blindness, Color-hearing, and Similar Abnormalities—What is an Abnormality?—Not Necessarily a Disease—Relation of Inversion to Degeneration—Exciting Causes of Inversion—Not Operative in the Absence of Predisposition.
The Prevention of Homosexuality—The Influence of the School—Coeducation—The Treatment of Sexual Inversion—Castration—Hypnotism—Associational Therapy—Psycho-analysis—Mental and Physical Hygiene—Marriage—The Children of Inverts—The Attitude of Society—The Horror Aroused by Homosexuality—Justinian—The Code Napoleon—The State of the Law in Europe Today—Germany—England—What Should be our Attitude Toward Homosexuality?
Homosexuality Among Tramps.
The School-friendships of Girls.
INDEX OF AUTHORS.
INDEX OF SUBJECTS.
Homosexuality Among Animals—Among the Lower Human Races—The Albanians—The Greeks—The Eskimos—The Tribes of the Northwest United States—Homosexuality Among Soldiers in Europe—Indifference Frequently Manifested by European Lower Classes—Sexual Inversion at Rome—Homosexuality in Prisons—Among Men of Exceptional Intellect and Moral Leaders—Muret—Michelangelo—Winkelmann—Homosexuality in English History—Walt Whitman—Verlaine—Burton's Climatic Theory of Homosexuality—The Racial Factor—The Prevalence of Homosexuality Today.
Sexual inversion, as here understood, means sexual instinct turned by inborn constitutional abnormality toward persons of the same sex. It is thus a narrower term than homosexuality, which includes all sexual attractions between persons of the same sex, even when seemingly due to the accidental absence of the natural objects of sexual attraction, a phenomenon of wide occurrence among all human races and among most of the higher animals. It is only during recent years that sexual inversion has been recognized; previously it was not distinguished from homosexuality in general, and homosexuality was regarded as a national custom, as an individual vice, or as an unimportant episode in grave forms of insanity. We have further to distinguish sexual inversion and all other forms of homosexuality from another kind of inversion which usually remains, so far as the sexual impulse itself is concerned, heterosexual, that is to say, normal. Inversion of this kind leads a person to feel like a person of the opposite sex, and to adopt, so far as possible, the tastes, habits, and dress of the opposite sex, while the direction of the sexual impulse remains normal. This condition I term sexo-esthetic inversion, or Eonism.
The nomenclature of the highly important form of sexual perversion with which we are here concerned is extremely varied, and most investigators have been much puzzled in coming to a conclusion as to the best, most exact, and at the same time most colorless names to apply to it.
The first in the field in modern times was Ulrichs who, as early as 1862, used the appellation "Uranian" (Uranier), based on the well-known myth in Plato's Banquet. Later he Germanized this term into "Urning" for the male, and "Urningin" for the female, and referred to the condition itself as "Urningtum." He also invented a number of other related terms on the same basis; some of these terms have had a considerable vogue, but they are too fanciful and high-strung to secure general acceptance. If used in other languages than German they certainly should not be used in their Germanized shape, and it is scarcely legitimate to use the term "Urning" in English. "Uranian" is more correct.
In Germany the first term accepted by recognized scientific authorities was "contrary sexual feeling" (Kontraere Sexualempfindung). It was devised by Westphal in 1869, and used by Krafft-Ebing and Moll. Though thus accepted by the earliest authorities in this field, and to be regarded as a fairly harmless and vaguely descriptive term, it is somewhat awkward, and is now little used in Germany; it was never currently used outside Germany. It has been largely superseded by the term "homosexuality." This also was devised (by a little-known Hungarian doctor, Benkert, who used the pseudonym Kertbeny) in the same year (1869), but at first attracted no attention. It has, philologically, the awkward disadvantage of being a bastard term compounded of Greek and Latin elements, but its significance—sexual attraction to the same sex—is fairly clear and definite, while it is free from any question-begging association of either favorable or unfavorable character. (Edward Carpenter has proposed to remedy its bastardly linguistic character by transforming it into "homogenic;" this, however, might mean not only "toward the same sex," but "of the same kind," and in German already possesses actually that meaning.) The term "homosexual" has the further advantage that on account of its classical origin it is easily translatable into many languages. It is now the most widespread general term for the phenomena we are dealing with, and it has been used by Hirschfeld, now the chief authority in this field, as the title of his encyclopedic work, Die Homosexualitaet.
"Sexual Inversion" (in French "inversion sexuelle," and in Italian "inversione sessuale") is the term which has from the first been chiefly used in France and Italy, ever since Charcot and Magnan, in 1882, published their cases of this anomaly in the Archives de Neurologie. It had already been employed in Italy by Tamassia in the Revista Sperimentale di Freniatria, in 1878. I have not discovered when and where the term "sexual inversion" was first used. Possibly it first appeared in English, for long before the paper of Charcot and Magnan I have noticed, in an anonymous review of Westphal's first paper in the Journal of Mental Science (then edited by Dr. Maudsley) for October, 1871, that "Contraere Sexualempfindung" is translated as "inverted sexual proclivity." So far as I am aware, "sexual inversion" was first used in English, as the best term, by J.A. Symonds in 1883, in his privately printed essay, A Problem in Greek Ethics. Later, in 1897, the same term was adopted, I believe for the first time publicly in English, in the present work.
It is unnecessary to refer to the numerous other names which have been proposed. (A discussion of the nomenclature will be found in the first chapter of Hirschfeld's work, Die Homosexualitaet, and of some special terms in an article by Schouten, Sexual-Probleme, December, 1912.) It may suffice to mention the ancient theological and legal term "sodomy" (sodomia) because it is still the most popular term for this perversion, though, it must be remembered, it has become attached to the physical act of intercourse per anum, even when carried out heterosexually, and has little reference to psychic sexual proclivity. This term has its origin in the story (narrated in Genesis, ch. xix) of Lot's visitors whom the men of Sodom desired to have intercourse with, and of the subsequent destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. This story furnishes a sufficiently good ground for the use of the term, though the Jews do not regard sodomy as the sin of Sodom, but rather inhospitality and hardness of heart to the poor (J. Preuss, Biblisch-Talmudische Medizin, pp. 579-81), and Christian theologians also, both Catholic and Protestant (see, e.g., Jahrbuch fuer sexuelle Zwischenstufen, vol. iv, p. 199, and Hirschfeld, Homosexualitaet, p. 742), have argued that it was not homosexuality, but their other offenses, which provoked the destruction of the Cities of the Plain. In Germany "sodomy" has long been used to denote bestiality, or sexual intercourse with animals, but this use of the term is quite unjustified. In English there is another term, "buggery," identical in meaning with sodomy, and equally familiar. "Bugger" (in French, bougre) is a corruption of "Bulgar," the ancient Bulgarian heretics having been popularly supposed to practise this perversion. The people of every country have always been eager to associate sexual perversions with some other country than their own.
The terms usually adopted in the present volume are "sexual inversion" and "homosexuality." The first is used more especially to indicate that the sexual impulse is organically and innately turned toward individuals of the same sex. The second is used more comprehensively of the general phenomena of sexual attraction between persons of the same sex, even if only of a slight and temporary character. It may be admitted that there is no precise warrant for any distinction of this kind between the two terms. The distinction in the phenomena is, however, still generally recognized; thus Iwan Bloch applies the term "homosexuality" to the congenital form, and "pseudo-homosexuality" to its spurious or simulated forms. Those persons who are attracted to both sexes are now usually termed "bisexual," a more convenient term than "psycho-sexual hermaphrodite," which was formerly used. There remains the normal person, who is "heterosexual."
Before approaching the study of sexual inversion in cases which we may investigate with some degree of scientific accuracy, there is interest in glancing briefly at the phenomena as they appear before us, as yet scarcely or at all differentiated, among animals, among various human races, and at various periods.
Among animals in a domesticated or confined state it is easy to find evidence of homosexual attraction, due merely to the absence of the other sex. This was known to the ancients; the Egyptians regarded two male partridges as the symbol of homosexuality, and Aristotle noted that two female pigeons would cover each other if no male was at hand. Buffon observed many examples, especially among birds. He found that, if male or female birds of various species—such as partridges, fowls, and doves—were shut up together, they would soon begin to have sexual relations among themselves, the males sooner and more frequently than the females. More recently Sainte-Claire Deville observed that dogs, rams, and bulls, when isolated, first became restless and dangerous, and then acquired a permanent state of sexual excitement, not obeying the laws of heat, and leading them to attempts to couple together; the presence of the opposite sex at once restored them to normal conditions. Bombarda of Lisbon states that in Portugal it is well known that in every herd of bulls there is nearly always one bull who is ready to lend himself to the perverted whims of his companions. It may easily be observed how a cow in heat exerts an exciting influence on other cows, impelling them to attempt to play the bull's part. Lacassagne has also noted among young fowls and puppies, etc., that, before ever having had relations with the opposite sex, and while in complete liberty, they make hesitating attempts at intercourse with their own sex. This, indeed, together with similar perversions, may often be observed, especially in puppies, who afterward become perfectly normal. Among white rats, which are very sexual animals, Steinach found that, when deprived of females, the males practise homosexuality, though only with males with whom they have long associated; the weaker rats play the passive part. But when a female is introduced they immediately turn to her; although they are occasionally altogether indifferent to sex, they never actually prefer their own sex.
With regard to the playing of the female part by the weaker rats it is interesting to observe that Fere found among insects that the passive part in homosexual relations is favored by fatigue; among cockchafers it was the male just separated from the female who would take the passive part (on the rare occasions when homosexual relations occurred) with a fresh male.
Homosexuality appears to be specially common among birds. It was among birds that it attracted the attention of the ancients, and numerous interesting observations have been made in more recent times. Thus Selous, a careful bird-watcher, finds that the ruff, the male of the Machetes pugnax, suffers from sexual repression owing to the coyness of the female (the reeve), and consequently the males often resort to homosexual intercourse. It is still more remarkable that the reeves also, even in the presence of the males, will court each other and have intercourse. We may associate this with the high erotic development of birds, the difficulty with which tumescence seems to occur in them, and their long courtships.
Among the higher animals, again, female monkeys, even when grown up (as Moll was informed), behave in a sexual way to each other, though it is difficult to say how far this is merely in play. Dr. Seitz, Director of the Frankfurt Zooelogical Garden, gave Moll a record of his own careful observations of homosexual phenomena among the males and females of various animals confined in the Garden (Antelope cervicapra, Bos Indicus, Capra hircus, Ovis steatopyga). In all such cases we are not concerned with sexual inversion, but merely with the accidental turning of the sexual instinct into an abnormal channel, the instinct being called out by an approximate substitute, or even by diffused emotional excitement, in the absence of the normal object.
It is probable, however, that cases of true sexual inversion—in which gratification is preferably sought in the same sex—may be found among animals, although observations have rarely been made or recorded. It has been found by Muccioli, an Italian authority on pigeons, that among Belgian carrier-pigeons inverted practices may occur, even in the presence of many of the other sex. This seems to be true inversion, though we are not told whether these birds were also attracted toward the opposite sex. The birds of this family appear to be specially liable to sexual perversion. Thus M.J. Bailly-Maitre, a breeder of great knowledge and a keen observer, wrote to Girard that "they are strange creatures in their manners and customs and are apt to elude the most persistent observer. No animal is more depraved. Mating between males, and still more frequently between females, often occurs at an early age: up to the second year. I have had several pairs of pigeons formed by subjects of the same sex who for many months behaved as if the mating were natural. In some cases this had taken place among young birds of the same nest, who acted like real mates, though both subjects were males. In order to mate them productively we have had to separate them and shut each of them up for some days with a female." In the Berlin Zooelogical Gardens also, it has been noticed that two birds of the same sex will occasionally become attached to each other and remain so in spite of repeated advances from individuals of opposite sex. This occurred, for instance, in the case of two males of the Egyptian goose who were thus to all appearance paired, and always kept together, vigorously driving away any female that approached. Similarly a male Australian sheldrake was paired to a male of another species.
Among birds generally, inverted sexuality seems to accompany the development of the secondary sexual characters of the opposite sex which is sometimes found. Thus, a poultry-breeder describes a hen (colored Dorking) crowing like a cock, only somewhat more harshly, as a cockerel crows, and with an enormous comb, larger than is ever seen in the male. This bird used to try to tread her fellow-hens. At the same time she laid early and regularly, and produced "grand chickens." Among ducks, also, it has occasionally been observed that the female assumes at the same time both male livery and male sexual tendencies. It is probable that such observations will be multiplied in the future, and that sexual inversion in the true sense will be found commoner among animals than at present it appears to be.
Traces of homosexual practices, sometimes on a large scale, have been found among all the great divisions of the human race. It would be possible to collect a considerable body of evidence under this head. Unfortunately, however, the travellers and others on whose records we are dependent have been so shy of touching these subjects, and so ignorant of the main points for investigation, that it is very difficult to discover sexual inversion in the proper sense in any lower race. Travellers have spoken vaguely of crimes against nature without defining the precise relationship involved nor inquiring how far any congenital impulse could be distinguished.
Looking at the phenomena generally, so far as they have been recorded among various lower races, we seem bound to recognize that there is a widespread natural instinct impelling men toward homosexual relationships, and that this has been sometimes, though very exceptionally, seized upon and developed for advantageous social purposes. On the whole, however, unnatural intercourse (sodomy) has been regarded as an antisocial offense, and punishable sometimes by the most serious penalties that could be invented. This was, for instance, the case in ancient Mexico, in Peru, among the Persians, in China, and among the Hebrews and Mohammedans.
Even in very early history it is possible to find traces of homosexuality, with or without an implied disapproval. Its existence in Assyria and Babylonia is indicated by the Codex Hamurabi and by inscriptions which do not on the whole refer to it favorably. As regards Egypt we learn from a Fayum papyrus, found by Flinders Petrie, translated by Griffiths, and discussed by Oefele, that more than four thousand years ago homosexual practices were so ancient that they were attributed to the gods Horus and Set. The Egyptians showed great admiration of masculine beauty, and it would seem that they never regarded homosexuality as punishable or even reprehensible. It is notable, also, that Egyptian women were sometimes of very virile type, and Hirschfeld considers that intermediate sexual types were specially widespread among the Egyptians.
One might be tempted to expect that homosexual practices would be encouraged whenever it was necessary to keep down the population. Aristotle says that it was allowed by law in Crete for this end. And Professor Haddon tells me that at Torres Straits a native advocated sodomy on this ground. There seems, however, on the whole, to be little evidence pointing to this utilization of the practice. The homosexual tendency appears to have flourished chiefly among warriors and warlike peoples. During war and the separation from women that war involves, the homosexual instinct tends to develop; it flourished, for instance, among the Carthaginians and among the Normans, as well as among the warlike Dorians, Scythians, Tartars, and Celts, and, when there has been an absence of any strong moral feeling against it, the instinct has been cultivated and, idealized as a military virtue, partly because it counteracts the longing for the softening feminine influences of the home and partly because it seems to have an inspiring influence in promoting heroism and heightening esprit de corps. In the lament of David over Jonathan we have a picture of intimate friendship—"passing the love of women"—between comrades in arms among a barbarous, warlike race. There is nothing to show that such a relationship was sexual, but among warriors in New Caledonia friendships that were undoubtedly homosexual were recognized and regulated; the fraternity of arms, according to Foley, complicated with pederasty, was more sacred than uterine fraternity. We have, moreover, a recent example of the same relationships recognized in a modern European race—the Albanians.
Hahn, in the course of his Albanische Studien (1854, p. 166), says that the young men between 16 and 24 lore boys from about 12 to 17. A Gege marries at the age of 24 or 25, and then he usually, but not always, gives up boy-love. The following passage is reported by Hahn as the actual language used to him by an Albanian Gege: "The lover's feeling for the boy is pure as sunshine. It places the beloved on the same pedestal as a saint. It is the highest and most exalted passion of which the human breast is capable. The sight of a beautiful youth awakens astonishment in the lover, and opens the door of his heart to the delight which the contemplation of this loveliness affords. Love takes possession of him so completely that all his thought and feeling goes out in it. If he finds himself in the presence of the beloved, he rests absorbed in gazing on him. Absent, he thinks of nought but him. If the beloved unexpectedly appears, he falls into confusion, changes color, turns alternately pale and red. His heart beats faster and impedes his breathing. He has ears and eyes only for the beloved. He shuns touching him with the hand, kisses him only on the forehead, sings his praise in verse, a woman's never." One of these love-poems of an Albanian Gege runs as follows: "The sun, when it rises in the morning, is like you, boy, when you are near me. When your dark eye turns upon me, it drives my reason from my head."
It should be added that Prof. Weigand, who knew the Albanians well, assured Bethe (Rheinisches Museum fuer Philologie, 1907, p. 475) that the relations described by Hahn are really sexual, although tempered by idealism. A German scholar who travelled in Albania some years ago, also, assured Naecke (Jahrbuch fuer sexuelle Zwischenstufen, vol. ix, 1908, p. 327) that he could fully confirm Hahn's statements, and that, though it was difficult to speak positively, he doubted whether these relationships were purely ideal. While most prevalent among the Moslems, they are also found among the Christians, and receive the blessing of the priest in church. Jealousy is frequently aroused, the same writer remarks, and even murder may be committed on account of a boy.
It may be mentioned here that among the Tschuktsches, Kamschatdals, and allied peoples (according to a Russian anthropological journal quoted in Sexual-Probleme, January, 1913, p. 41) there are homosexual marriages among the men, and occasionally among the women, ritually consecrated and openly recognized.
The Albanians, it is possible, belonged to the same stock which produced the Dorian Greeks, and the most important and the most thoroughly known case of socially recognized homosexuality is that of Greece during its period of highest military as well as ethical and intellectual vigor. In this case, as in those already mentioned, the homosexual tendency was frequently regarded as having beneficial results, which caused it to be condoned, if not, indeed, fostered as a virtue. Plutarch repeated the old Greek statement that the Beotians, the Lacedemonians, and the Cretans were the most warlike stocks because they were the strongest in love; an army composed of loving homosexual couples, it was held, would be invincible. It appears that the Dorians introduced paiderastia, as the Greek form of homosexuality is termed, into Greece; they were the latest invaders, a vigorous mountain race from the northwest (the region including what is now Albania) who spread over the whole land, the islands, and Asia Minor, becoming the ruling race. Homosexuality was, of course, known before they came, but they made it honorable. Homer never mentions it, and it was not known as legitimate to the AEolians or the Ionians. Bethe, who has written a valuable study of Dorian paiderastia, states that the Dorians admitted a kind of homosexual marriage, and even had a kind of boy-marriage by capture, the scattered vestiges of this practice indicating, Bethe believes, that it was a general custom among the Dorians before the invasion of Greece. Such unions even received a kind of religions consecration. It was, moreover, shameful for a noble youth in Crete to have no lover; it spoke ill for his character. By paiderastia a man propagated his virtues, as it were, in the youth he loved, implanting them by the act of intercourse.
In its later Greek phases paiderastia was associated less with war than with athletics; it was refined and intellectualized by poetry and philosophy. It cannot be doubted that both AEschylus and Sophocles cultivated boy-love, while its idealized presentation in the dialogues of Plato has caused it to be almost identified with his name; thus in the early Charmides we have an attractive account of the youth who gives his name to the dialogue and the emotions he excites are described. But even in the early dialogues Plato only conditionally approved of the sexual side of paiderastia and he condemned it altogether in the final Laws.
The early stages of Greek paiderastia are very interestingly studied by Bethe, "Die Dorische Knabenliebe," Rheinisches Museum fuer Philologie, 1907. J.A. Symonds's essay on the later aspects of paiderastia, especially as reflected in Greek literature, A Problem in Greek Ethics, is contained in the early German edition of the present study, but (though privately printed in 1883 by the author in an edition of twelve copies and since pirated in another private edition) it has not yet been published in English. Paiderastia in Greek poetry has also been studied by Paul Brandt, Jahrbuch fuer sexuelle Zwischenstufen, vols. viii and ix (1906 and 1907), and by Otto Knapp (Anthropophyteia, vol. iii, pp. 254-260) who seeks to demonstrate the sensual side of paiderastia. On the other hand, Licht, working on somewhat the same lines as Bethe (Zeitschrift fuer Sexualwissenschaft, August, 1908), deals with the ethical element in paiderastia, points out its beneficial moral influence, and argues that it was largely on this ground that it was counted sacred. Licht has also published a learned study of paiderastia in Attic comedy (Anthropophyteia, vol. vii, 1910), and remarks that "without paiderastia Greek comedy is unthinkable." Paiderastia in the Greek anthology has been fully explored by P. Stephanus (Jahrbuch fuer sexuelle Zwischenstufen, vol. ix, 1908, p. 213). Kiefer, who has studied Socrates in relation to homosexuality (O. Kiefer, "Socrates und die Homosexualitaet," Jahrbuch fuer sexuelle Zwischenstufen, vol. ix, 1908), concludes that he was bisexual but that his sexual impulses had been sublimated. It may be added that many results of recent investigation concerning paiderastia are summarized by Hirschfeld, Die Homosexualitaet, pp. 747-788, and by Edward Carpenter, Intermediate Types Among Primitive Folk, 1914, part ii; see also Bloch, Die Prostitution, vol. i, p. 232 et seq., and Der Ursprung der Syphilis, vol. ii, p. 564.
It would appear that almost the only indications outside Greece of paiderastic homosexuality showing a high degree of tenderness and esthetic feeling are to be found in Persian and Arabian literature, after the time of the Abbasids, although this practice was forbidden by the Koran.
In Constantinople, as Naecke was informed by German inverts living in that city, homosexuality is widespread, most cultivated Turks being capable of relations with boys as well as with women, though very few are exclusively homosexual, so that their attitude would seem to be largely due to custom and tradition. Adult males rarely have homosexual relations together; one of the couple is usually a boy of 12 to 18 years, and this condition of things among the refined classes is said to resemble ancient Greek paiderastia. But ordinary homosexual prostitution is prevalent; it is especially recognized in the baths which abound in Constantinople and are often open all night. The attendants at these baths are youths who scarcely need an invitation to induce them to gratify the client in this respect, the gratification usually consisting in masturbation, mutual or one-sided, as desired. The practice, though little spoken of, is carried on almost openly, and blackmailing is said to be unknown. In the New Turkey, however, it is stated by Adler Bey that homosexual prostitution has almost disappeared.
There is abundant evidence to show that homosexual practices exist and have long existed in most parts of the world outside Europe, when subserving no obvious social or moral end. How far they are associated with congenital inversion is usually very doubtful. In China, for instance, it seems that there are special houses devoted to male prostitution, though less numerous than the houses devoted to females, for homosexuality cannot be considered common in China (its prevalence among Chinese abroad being due to the absence of women) and it is chiefly found in the north. When a rich man gives a feast he sends for women to cheer the repast by music and song, and for boys to serve at table and to entertain the guests by their lively conversation. The boys have been carefully brought up for this occupation, receiving an excellent education, and their mental qualities are even more highly valued than their physical attractiveness. The women are less carefully brought up and less esteemed. After the meal the lads usually return home with a considerable fee. What further occurs the Chinese say little about. It seems that real and deep affection is often born of these relations, at first platonic, but in the end becoming physical, not a matter for great concern in the eyes of the Chinese. In the Chinese novels, often of a very literary character, devoted to masculine love, it seems that all the preliminaries and transports of normal love are to be found, while physical union may terminate the scene. In China, however, the law may be brought into action for attempts against nature even with mutual consent; the penalty is one hundred strokes with the bamboo and a month's imprisonment; if there is violence, the penalty is decapitation; I am not able to say how far the law is a dead letter. According to Matignon, so far as homosexuality exists in China, it is carried on with much more decorum and restraint than it is in Europe, and he thinks it may be put down to the credit of the Chinese that, unlike Europeans, they never practice unnatural connection with women. His account of the customs of the Chinese confirms Morache's earlier account, and he remarks that, though not much spoken of, homosexuality is not looked down upon. He gives some interesting details concerning the boy prostitutes. These are sold by their parents (sometimes stolen from them), about the age of 4, and educated, while they are also subjected to a special physical training, which includes massage of the gluteal regions to favor development, dilatation of the anus, and epilation (which is not, however, practised by Chinese women). At the same time, they are taught music, singing, drawing, and the art of poetry. The waiters at the restaurants always know where these young gentlemen are to be found when they are required to grace a rich man's feast. They are generally accompanied by a guardian, and usually nothing very serious takes place, for they know their value, and money will not always buy their expensive favors. They are very effeminate, luxuriously dressed and perfumed, and they seldom go on foot. There are, however, lower orders of such prostitutes.
Homosexuality is easily traceable in India. Dubois referred to houses devoted to male prostitution, with men dressed as women, and imitating the ways of women. Burton in the "Terminal Essay" to his translation of the Arabian Nights, states that when in 1845 Sir Charles Napier conquered and annexed Sind three brothels of eunuchs and boys were found in the small town of Karachi, and Burton was instructed to visit and report on them. Hindus, in general, however, it appears, hold homosexuality in abhorrence. In Afghanistan homosexuality is more generally accepted, and Burton stated that "each caravan is accompanied by a number of boys and lads almost in woman's attire, with kohled eyes and rouged cheeks, long tresses and hennaed fingers and toes, riding luxuriously in camel paniers."
If we turn to the New World, we find that among the American Indians, from the Eskimo of Alaska downward to Brazil and still farther south, homosexual customs have been very frequently observed. Sometimes they are regarded by the tribe with honor, sometimes with indifference, sometimes with contempt; but they appear to be always tolerated. Although there are local differences, these customs, on the whole, seem to have much in common. The best early description which I have been able to find is by Langsdorff and concerns the Aleuts of Oonalashka in Alaska: "Boys, if they happen to be very handsome," he says, "are often brought up entirely in the manner of girls, and instructed in the arts women use to please men; their beards are carefully plucked out as soon as they begin to appear, and their chins tattooed like those of women; they wear ornaments of glass beads upon their legs and arms, bind and cut their hair in the same manner as the women, and supply their place with the men as concubines. This shocking, unnatural, and immoral practice has obtained here even from the remotest times; nor have any measures hitherto been taken to repress and restrain it; such men are known under the name of schopans."
Among the Konyagas Langsdorff found the custom much more common than among the Aleuts; he remarks that, although the mothers brought up some of their children in this way, they seemed very fond of their offspring. Lisiansky, at about the same period, tells us that: "Of all the customs of these islanders, the most disgusting is that of men, called schoopans, living with men, and supplying the place of women. These are brought up from their infancy with females, and taught all the feminine arts. They even assume the manner and dress of the women so nearly that a stranger would naturally take them for what they are not. This odious practice was formerly so prevalent that the residence of one of these monsters in a house was considered as fortunate; it is, however, daily losing ground." He mentions a case in which a priest had nearly married two males, when an interpreter chanced to come in and was able to inform him what he was doing.
The practice has, however, apparently continued to be fairly common among the Alaska Eskimos down to recent times. Thus Dr. Engelmann mentioned to me that he was informed by those who had lived in Alaska, especially near Point Barrow, that as many as 5 such individuals (regarded by uninstructed strangers as "hermaphrodites") might be found in a single comparatively small community. It is stated by Davydoff, as quoted by Holmberg, that the boy is selected to be a schopan because he is girl-like. This is a point of some interest as it indicates that the schopan is not effeminated solely by suggestion and association, but is probably feminine by inborn constitution.
In Louisiana, Florida, Yucatan, etc., somewhat similar customs exist or have existed. In Brazil men are to be found dressed as women and solely occupying themselves with feminine occupations; they are not very highly regarded. They are called cudinas: i.e., circumcized. Among the Pueblo Indians of New Mexico these individuals are called mujerados (supposed to be a corruption of mujeriego) and are the chief passive agents in the homosexual ceremonies of these people. They are said to be intentionally effeminated in early life by much masturbation and by constant horse-riding.
Among all the tribes of the northwest United States sexual inverts may be found. The invert is called a bote ("not man, not woman") by the Montana, and a burdash ("half-man, half-woman") by the Washington Indians. The bote has been carefully studied by Dr. A.B. Holder. Holder finds that the bote wears woman's dress, and that his speech and manners are feminine. The dress and manners are assumed in childhood, but no sexual practices take place until puberty. These consist in the practice of fellatio by the bote, who probably himself experiences the orgasm at the same time. The bote is not a pederast, although pederasty occurs among these Indians. Holder examined bote who was splendidly made, prepossessing, and in perfect health. With much reluctance he agreed to a careful examination. The sexual organs were quite normal, though perhaps not quite so large as his physique would suggest, but he had never had intercourse with a woman. On removing his clothes he pressed his thighs together, as a timid woman would, so as to conceal completely the sexual organs; Holder says that the thighs "really, or to my fancy," had the feminine rotundity. He has heard a bote "beg a male Indian to submit to his caress," and he tells that "one little fellow, while in the agency boarding-school, was found frequently surreptitiously wearing female attire. He was punished, but finally escaped from school and became a bote, which vocation he has since followed."
At Tahiti at the beginning of the nineteenth century, Turnbull found that "there are a set of men in this country whose open profession is of such abomination that the laudable delicacy of our language will not admit it to be mentioned. These are called by the natives Mahoos; they assume the dress, attitude, and manners of women, and affect all the fantastic oddities and coquetries of the vainest of females. They mostly associate with the women, who court their acquaintance. With the manners of the women they adopt their peculiar employments, making cloth, bonnets, and mats; and so completely are they unsexed that had they not been pointed out to me I should not have known them but as women. I add, with some satisfaction, that the encouragement of this abomination is almost solely confined to the chiefs."
Among the Sakalaves of Madagascar there are certain boys called sekatra, as described by Lasnet, who are apparently chosen from childhood on account of weak or delicate appearance and brought up as girls. They live like women and have intercourse with men, with or without sodomy, paying the men who please them.
Among the negro population of Zanzibar forms of homosexuality which are believed to be congenital (as well as acquired forms) are said to be fairly common. Their frequency is thought to be due to Arab influence. The male congenital inverts show from their earliest years no aptitude for men's occupations, but are attracted toward female occupations. As they grow older they wear women's clothes, dress their hair in women's fashion, and behave altogether like women. They associate only with women and with male prostitutes, and they obtain sexual satisfaction by passive pederasty or in ways simulating coitus. In appearance they resemble ordinary male prostitutes, who are common in Zanzibar, but it is noteworthy that the natives make a clear distinction between them and men prostitutes. The latter are looked down on with contempt, while the former, as being what they are "by the will of God," are tolerated.
Homosexuality; occurs in various parts of Africa. Cases of effeminatio and passive sodomy have been reported from Unyamwezi and Uganda. Among the Bangala of the Upper Congo sodomy between men is very common, especially when they are away from home, in strange towns, or in fishing camps. If, however, a man had intercourse with a woman per anum he was at one time liable to be put to death.
Among the Papuans in some parts of New Guinea, as already mentioned, homosexuality is said to be well recognized, and is resorted to for convenience as well, perhaps, as for Malthusian reasons. But in the Rigo district of British New Guinea, where habitual sodomy is not practised, Dr. Seligmann, of the Cambridge Anthropological Expedition to Torres Straits, made some highly important observations on several men and women who clearly appeared to be cases of congenital sexual inversion with some degree of esthetic inversion and even some anatomical modification. These people, it may be noted, belong to a primitive race, uncontaminated by contact with white races, and practically still in the Stone Age.
Finally, among another allied primitive people, the Australians, it would appear that homosexuality has long been well established in tribal customs. Among the natives of Kimberley, Western Australia (who are by no means of low type, quick and intelligent, with special aptitudes for learning languages and music), if a wife is not obtainable for a young man he is presented with a boy-wife between the ages of 5 and 10 (the age when a boy receives his masculine initiation). The exact nature of the relations between the boy-wife and his protector are doubtful; they certainly have connection, but the natives repudiate with horror and disgust the idea of sodomy.
Further light is thrown on homosexuality in Australia by the supposition of Spencer and Gillen that the mika operation (urethral subincision), an artificial hypospadias, is for the purpose of homosexual intercourse. Klaatsch has discussed the homosexual origin of the mika operation on the basis of information he received from missionaries at Niol-Niol, on the northwest coast. The subincised man acts as a female to the as yet unoperated boys, who perform coitus in the incised opening. Both informed Klaatsch in 1906 that at Boulia in Queensland the operated men are said to "possess a vulva."
These various accounts are of considerable interest, though for the most part their precise significance remains doubtful. Some of them, however,—such as Holder's description of the bote, Baumann's account of homosexual phenomena in Zanzibar, and especially Seligmann's observations in British New Guinea,—indicate not only the presence of esthetic inversion but of true congenital sexual inversion. The extent of the evidence will doubtless be greatly enlarged as the number of competent observers increases, and crucial points are no longer so frequently overlooked.
On the whole, the evidence shows that among lower races homosexual practices are regarded with considerable indifference, and the real invert, if he exists among them, as doubtless he does exist, generally passes unperceived or joins some sacred caste which sanctifies his exclusively homosexual inclinations.
Even in Europe today a considerable lack of repugnance to homosexual practices may be found among the lower classes. In this matter, as folklore shows in so many other matters, the uncultured man of civilization is linked to the savage. In England, I am told, the soldier often has little or no objection to prostitute himself to the "swell" who pays him, although for pleasure he prefers to go to women; and Hyde Park is spoken of as a center of male prostitution.
"Among the working masses of England and Scotland," Q. writes, "'comradeship' is well marked, though not (as in Italy) very conscious of itself. Friends often kiss each other, though this habit seems to vary a good deal in different sections and coteries. Men commonly sleep together, whether comrades or not, and so easily get familiar. Occasionally, but not so very often, this relation delays for a time, or even indefinitely, actual marriage, and in some instances is highly passionate and romantic. There is a good deal of grossness, no doubt, here and there in this direction among the masses; but there are no male prostitutes (that I am aware of) whose regular clients are manual workers. This kind of prostitution in London is common enough, but I have only a slight personal knowledge of it. Many youths are 'kept' handsomely in apartments by wealthy men, and they are, of course, not always inaccessible to others. Many keep themselves in lodgings by this means, and others eke out scanty wages by the same device: just like women, in fact. Choirboys reinforce the ranks to a considerable extent, and private soldiers to a large extent. Some of the barracks (notably Knightsbridge) are great centres. On summer evenings Hyde Park and the neighborhood of Albert Gate is full of guardsmen and others plying a lively trade, and with little disguise, in uniform or out. In these cases it sometimes only amounts to a chat on a retired seat or a drink at a bar; sometimes recourse is had to a room in some known lodging-house, or to one or two hotels which lend themselves to this kind of business. In any case it means a covetable addition to Tommy Atkins's pocket-money." And Mr. Raffalovich, speaking of London, remarks: "The number of soldiers who prostitute themselves is greater than we are willing to believe. It is no exaggeration to say that in certain regiments the presumption is in favor of the venality of the majority of the men." It is worth noting that there is a perfect understanding in this matter between soldiers and the police, who may always be relied upon by the former for assistance and advice. I am indebted to my correspondent "Z" for the following notes: "Soldiers are no less sought after in France than in England or in Germany, and special houses exist for military prostitution both in Paris and the garrison-towns. Many facts known about the French army go to prove that these habits have been contracted in Algeria, and have spread to a formidable extent through whole regiments. The facts related by Ulrichs about the French foreign legion, on the testimony of a credible witness who had been a pathic in his regiment, deserve attention (Ara Spei, p. 20; Memnon, p. 27). This man, who was a German, told Ulrichs that the Spanish, French, and Italian soldiers were the lovers, the Swiss and German their beloved (see also General Brossier's Report, quoted by Burton, Arabian Nights, vol. x, p. 251). In Lucien Descaves's military novel, Sous Offs (Paris, Tresse et Stock, 1890), some details are given regarding establishments for male prostitution. See pages 322, 412, and 417 for description of the drinking-shop called 'Aux Amis de l'Armee,' where a few maids were kept for show, and also of its frequenters, including, in particular, the Adjutant Laprevotte. Ulrichs reports that in the Austrian army lectures on homosexual vices are regularly given to cadets and conscripts (Memnon, p. 26). A soldier who had left the army told a friend of mine that he and many of his comrades had taken to homosexual indulgences when abroad on foreign service in a lonely station. He kept the practice up in England 'because the women of his class were so unattractive.' The captain of an English man-of-war said that he was always glad to send his men on shore after a long cruise at sea, never feeling sure how far they might not all go if left without women for a certain space of time." I may add that A. Hamon (La France Sociale et Politique, 1891, pp. 653-55; also in his Psychologie du Militaire Professional, chapter x) gives details as to the prevalence of homosexuality in the French army, especially in Algeria; he regards it as extremely common, although the majority are free. A fragment of a letter by General Lamoriciere (speaking of Marshal Changarnier) is quoted: En Afrique nous en etions tous, mais lui en est reste ici.
This primitive indifference is doubtless also a factor in the prevalence of homosexuality among criminals, although, here, it must be remembered, two other factors (congenital abnormality and the isolation of imprisonment) have to be considered. In Russia, Tarnowsky observes that all pederasts are agreed that the common people are tolerably indifferent to their sexual advances, which they call "gentlemen's games." A correspondent remarks on "the fact, patent to all observers, that simple folk not infrequently display no greater disgust for the abnormalities of sexual appetite than they do for its normal manifestations." He knows of many cases in which men of lower class were flattered and pleased by the attentions of men of higher class, although not themselves inverted. And from this point of view the following case, which he mentions, is very instructive:—
A pervert whom I can trust told me that he had made advances to upward of one hundred men in the course of the last fourteen years, and that he had only once met with a refusal (in which case the man later on offered himself spontaneously) and only once with an attempt to extort money. Permanent relations of friendship sprang up in most instances. He admitted that he looked after these persons and helped them with his social influence and a certain amount of pecuniary support—setting one up in business, giving another something to marry on, and finding places for others.
Among the peasantry in Switzerland, I am informed, homosexual relationships are not uncommon before marriage, and such relationships are lightly spoken of as "Dummheiten". No doubt, similar traits might be found in the peasantry of other parts of Europe.
What may be regarded as true sexual inversion can be traced in Europe from the beginning of the Christian era (though we can scarcely demonstrate the congenital element) especially among two classes—men of exceptional ability and criminals; and also, it may be added, among those neurotic and degenerate individuals who may be said to lie between these two classes, and on or over the borders of both. Homosexuality, mingled with various other sexual abnormalities and excesses, seems to have flourished in Rome during the empire, and is well exemplified in the persons of many of the emperors. Julius Caesar, Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, Galba, Titus, Domitian, Nerva, Trajan, Hadrian, Commodus, and Heliogabalus—many of them men of great ability and, from a Roman standpoint, great moral worth—are all charged, on more or less solid evidence, with homosexual practices. In Julius Caesar—"the husband of all women and the wife of all men" as he was satirically termed—excess of sexual activity seems to have accompanied, as is sometimes seen, an excess of intellectual activity. He was first accused of homosexual practices after a long stay in Bithynia with King Nikomedes, and the charge was very often renewed. Caesar was proud of his physical beauty, and, like some modern inverts, he was accustomed carefully to shave and epilate his body to preserve the smoothness of the skin. Hadrian's love for his beautiful slave Antinoues is well known; the love seems to have been deep and mutual, and Antinoues has become immortalized, partly by the romance of his obscure death and partly by the new and strangely beautiful type which he has given to sculpture. Heliogabalus, "the most homosexual of all the company," as he has been termed, seems to have been a true sexual invert, of feminine type; he dressed as a woman and was devoted to the men he loved.
Homosexual practices everywhere flourish and abound in prisons. There is abundant evidence on this point. I will only bring forward the evidence of Dr. Wey, formerly physician to the Elmira Reformatory, New York. "Sexuality" (he wrote in a private letter) "is one of the most troublesome elements with which we have to contend. I have no data as to the number of prisoners here who are sexually perverse. In my pessimistic moments I should feel like saying that all were; but probably 80 per cent, would be a fair estimate." And, referring to the sexual influence which some men have over others, he remarks that "there are many men with features suggestive of femininity that attract others to them in a way that reminds me of a bitch in heat followed by a pack of dogs." In Sing Sing prison of New York, 20 per cent, of the prisoners are said to be actively homosexual and a large number of the rest passively homosexual. These prison relationships are not always of a brutal character, McMurtrie states, the attraction sometimes being more spiritual than physical.
Prison life develops and fosters the homosexual tendency of criminals; but there can be little doubt that that tendency, or else a tendency to sexual indifference or bisexuality, is a radical character of a very large number of criminals. We may also find it to a considerable extent among tramps, an allied class of undoubted degenerates, who, save for brief seasons, are less familiar with prison life. I am able to bring forward interesting evidence on this point by an acute observer who lived much among tramps in various countries, and largely devoted himself to the study of them.
The fact that homosexuality is especially common among men of exceptional intellect was long since noted by Dante:—
"In somma sappi, che tutti fur cherci E litterati grandi, et di gran fama D'un medismo peccato al mondo lerci."
It has often been noted since and remains a remarkable fact.
There cannot be the slightest doubt that intellectual and artistic abilities of the highest order have frequently been associated with a congenitally inverted sexual temperament. There has been a tendency among inverts themselves to discover their own temperament in many distinguished persons on evidence of the most slender character. But it remains a demonstrable fact that numerous highly distinguished persons, of the past and the present, in various countries, have been inverts. I may here refer to my own observations on this point in the preface. Mantegazza (Gli Amori degli Uomini) remarks that in his own restricted circle he is acquainted with "a French publicist, a German poet, an Italian statesman, and a Spanish jurist, all men of exquisite taste and highly cultivated mind," who are sexually inverted. Krafft-Ebing, in the preface to his Psychopathia Sexualis, referring to the "numberless" communications he has received from these "step-children of nature," remarks that "the majority of the writers are men of high intellectual and social position, and often possess very keen emotions." Raffalovich (Uranisme, p. 197) names among distinguished inverts, Alexander the Great, Epaminondas, Virgil, the great Conde, Prince Eugene, etc. (The question of Virgil's inversion is discussed in the Revista di Filologia, 1890, fas. 7-9, but I have not been able to see this review.) Moll, in his Beruehmte Homosexuelle (1910, in the series of Grenzfragen des Nerven- und Seelenlebens) discusses the homosexuality of a number of eminent persons, for the most part with his usual caution and sagacity; speaking of the alleged homosexuality of Wagner he remarks, with entire truth, that "the method of arguing the existence of homosexuality from the presence of feminine traits must be decisively rejected." Hirschfeld has more recently included in his great work Die Homosexualitaet (1913, pp. 650-674) two lists, ancient and modern, of alleged inverts among the distinguished persons of history, briefly stating the nature of the evidence in each case. They amount to nearly 300. Not all of them, however, can be properly described as distinguished. Thus we end in the list 43 English names; of these at least half a dozen were noblemen who were concerned in homosexual prosecutions, but were of no intellectual distinction. Others, again, are of undoubted eminence, but there is no good reason to regard them as homosexual; this is the case, for instance, as regards Swift, who may have been mentally abnormal, but appears to have been heterosexual rather than homosexual; Fletcher, of whom we know nothing definite in this respect, is also included, as well as Tennyson, whose youthful sentimental friendship for Arthur Hallam is exactly comparable to that of Montaigne for Etienne de la Boetie, yet Montaigne is not included in the list. It may be added, however, that while some of the English names in the list are thus extremely doubtful, it would have been possible to add some others who were without doubt inverts.
It has not, I think, been noted—largely because the evidence was insufficiently clear—that among moral leaders, and persons with strong ethical instincts, there is a tendency toward the more elevated forms of homosexual feeling. This may be traced, not only in some of the great moral teachers of old, but also in men and women of our own day. It is fairly evident why this should be so. Just as the repressed love of a woman or a man has, in normally constituted persons, frequently furnished the motive power for an enlarged philanthropic activity, so the person who sees his own sex also bathed in sexual glamour, brings to his work of human service an ardor wholly unknown to the normally constituted individual; morality to him has become one with love. I am not prepared here to insist on this point, but no one, I think, who studies sympathetically the histories and experiences of great moral leaders can fail in many cases to note the presence of this feeling, more or less finely sublimated from any gross physical manifestation.
If it is probable that in moral movements persons of homosexual temperament have sometimes become prominent, it is undoubtedly true, beyond possibility of doubt, that they have been prominent in religion. Many years ago (in 1885) the ethnologist, Elie Reclus, in his charming book, Les Primitifs, setting forth the phenomena of homosexuality among the Eskimo Innuit tribe, clearly insisted that from time immemorial there has been a connection between the invert and the priest, and showed how well this connection is illustrated by the Eskimo schupans. Much more recently, in his elaborate study of the priest, Horneffer discusses the feminine traits of priests and shows that, among the most various peoples, persons of sexually abnormal and especially homosexual temperament have assumed the functions of priesthood. To the popular eye the unnatural is the supernatural, and the abnormal has appeared to be specially close to the secret Power of the World. Abnormal persons are themselves of the same opinion and regard themselves as divine. As Horneffer points out, they often really possess special aptitude. Karsch in his Gleichgeschlechtliche Leben der Naturvoelker (1911) has brought out the high religious as well as social significance of castes of cross-dressed and often homosexual persons among primitive peoples. At the same time Edward Carpenter in his remarkable book, Intermediate Types among Primitive Folk (1914), has shown with much insight how it comes about that there is an organic connection between the homosexual temperament and unusual psychic or divinatory powers. Homosexual men were non-warlike and homosexual women non-domestic, so that their energies sought different outlets from those of ordinary men and women; they became the initiators of new activities. Thus it is that from among them would in some degree issue not only inventors and craftsmen and teachers, but sorcerers and diviners, medicine-men and wizards, prophets and priests. Such persons would be especially impelled to thought, because they would realize that they were different from other people; treated with reverence by some and with contempt by others, they would be compelled to face the problems of their own nature and, indirectly, the problems of the world generally. Moreover, Carpenter points out, persons in whom the masculine and feminine temperaments were combined would in many cases be persons of intuition and complex mind beyond their fellows, and so able to exercise divination and prophecy in a very real and natural sense.
This aptitude of the invert for primitive religion, for sorcery and divination, would have its reaction on popular feeling, more especially when magic and the primitive forms of religion began to fall into disrepute. The invert would be regarded as the sorcerer of a false and evil religion and be submerged in the same ignominy. This point has been emphasized by Westermarck in the instructive chapter on homosexuality in his great work on Moral Ideas. He points out the significance of the fact, at the first glance apparently inexplicable, that homosexuality in the general opinion of medieval Christianity was constantly associated, even confounded, with heresy, as we see significantly illustrated by the fact that in France and England the popular designation for homosexuality is derived from the Bulgarian heretics. It was, Westermarck believes, chiefly as a heresy and out of religious zeal that homosexuality was so violently reprobated and so ferociously punished.
In modern Europe we find the strongest evidence of the presence of what may fairly be called true sexual inversion when we investigate the men of the Renaissance. The intellectual independence of those days and the influence of antiquity seem to have liberated and fully developed the impulses of those abnormal individuals who would otherwise have found no clear expression, and passed unnoticed.
Muret, the Humanist, may perhaps be regarded as a typical example of the nature and fate of the superior invert of the Renaissance. Born in 1526 at Muret (Limousin), of poor but noble family, he was of independent, somewhat capricious character, unable to endure professors, and consequently he was mainly his own teacher, though he often sought advice from Jules-Cesar Scaliger. Muret was universally admired in his day for his learning and his eloquence, and is still regarded not only as a great Latinist and a fine writer, but as a notable man, of high intelligence, and remarkable, moreover, for courtesy in polemics in an age when that quality was not too common. His portrait shows a somewhat coarse and rustic but intelligent face. He conquered honor and respect before he died in 1585, at the age of 59. In early life Muret wrote wanton erotic poems to women which seem based on personal experience. But in 1553 we find him imprisoned in the Chatelet for sodomy and in danger of his life, so that he thought of starving himself to death. Friends, however, obtained his release and he settled in Toulouse. But the very next year he was burnt in effigy in Toulouse, as a Huguenot and sodomist, this being the result of a judicial sentence which had caused him to flee from the city and from France. Four years later he had to flee from Padua owing to a similar accusation. He had many friends but none of them protested against the charge, though they aided him to escape from the penalty. It is very doubtful whether he was a Huguenot, and whenever in his works he refers to pederasty it is with strong disapproval. But his writings reveal passionate friendship for men, and he seems to have expended little energy in combating a charge which, if false, was a shameful injustice to him. It was after fleeing into Italy and falling ill of a fever from fatigue and exposure that Muret is said to have made the famous retort (to the physician by his bedside who had said: "Faciamus experimentum in anima vili"): "Vilem animam appellas pro qua Christus non dedignatus est mori."
A greater Humanist than Muret, Erasmus himself, seems as a young man, when in the Augustinian monastery of Stein, to have had a homosexual attraction to another Brother (afterward Prior) to whom he addressed many passionately affectionate letters; his affection seems, however, to have been unrequited.
As the Renaissance developed, homosexuality seems to become more prominent among distinguished persons. Poliziano was accused of pederasty. Aretino was a pederast, as Pope Julius II seems also to have been. Ariosto wrote in his satires, no doubt too extremely:—
"Senza quel vizio son pochi umanisti."
Tasso had a homosexual strain in his nature, but he was of weak and feminine constitution, sensitively emotional and physically frail.
It is, however, among artists, at that time and later, that homosexuality may most notably be traced. Leonardo da Vinci, whose ideals as revealed in his work are so strangely bisexual, lay under homosexual suspicion in his youth. In 1476, when he was 24 years of age, charges were made against him before the Florentine officials for the control of public morality, and were repeated, though they do not appear to have been substantiated. There is, however, some ground for supposing that Leonardo was imprisoned in his youth. Throughout life he loved to surround himself with beautiful youths and his pupils were more remarkable for their attractive appearance than for their skill; to one at least of them he was strongly attached, while there is no record of any attachment to a woman. Freud, who has studied Leonardo with his usual subtlety, considers that his temperament was marked by "ideal homosexuality."
Michelangelo, one of the very chief artists of the Renaissance period, we cannot now doubt, was sexually inverted. The evidence furnished by his own letters and poems, as well as the researches of numerous recent workers,—Parlagreco, Scheffler, J.A. Symonds, etc.,—may be said to have placed this beyond question. He belonged to a family of 5 brothers, 4 of whom never married, and so far as is known left no offspring; the fifth only left 1 male heir. His biographer describes Michelangelo as "a man of peculiar, not altogether healthy, nervous temperament." He was indifferent to women; only in one case, indeed, during his long life is there evidence even of friendship with a woman, while he was very sensitive to the beauty of men, and his friendships were very tender and enthusiastic. At the same time there is no reason to suppose that he formed any physically passionate relationships with men, and even his enemies seldom or never made this accusation against him. We may probably accept the estimate of his character given by Symonds:—
Michelangelo Buonarotti was one of those exceptional, but not uncommon men who are born with sensibilities abnormally deflected from the ordinary channel. He showed no partiality for women, and a notable enthusiasm for the beauty of young men.... He was a man of physically frigid temperament, extremely sensitive to beauty of the male type, who habitually philosophized his emotions, and contemplated the living objects of his admiration as amiable, not only for their personal qualities, but also for their esthetical attractiveness.
A temperament of this kind seems to have had no significance for the men of those days; they were blind to all homosexual emotion which had no result in sodomy. Plato found such attraction a subject for sentimental metaphysics, but it was not until nearly our own time that it again became a subject of interest and study. Yet it undoubtedly had profound influence on Michelangelo's art, impelling him to find every kind of human beauty in the male form, and only a grave dignity or tenderness, divorced from every quality that is sexually desirable, in the female form. This deeply rooted abnormality is at once the key to the melancholy of Michelangelo and to the mystery of his art.
Michelangelo's contemporary, the painter Bazzi (1477-1549), seems also to have been radically inverted, and to this fact he owed his nickname Sodoma. As, however, he was married and had children, it may be that he was, as we should now say, of bisexual temperament. He was a great artist who has been dealt with unjustly, partly, perhaps, because of the prejudice of Vasari,—whose admiration for Michelangelo amounted to worship, but who is contemptuous toward Sodoma and grudging of praise,—partly because his work is little known out of Italy and not very easy of access there. Reckless, unbalanced, and eccentric in his life, Sodoma revealed in his painting a peculiar feminine softness and warmth—which indeed we seem to see also in his portrait of himself at Monte Oliveto Maggiore—and a very marked and tender feeling for masculine, but scarcely virile, beauty.
Cellini was probably homosexual. He was imprisoned on a charge of unnatural vice and is himself suspiciously silent in his autobiography concerning this imprisonment.
In the seventeenth century another notable sculptor who has been termed the Flemish Cellini, Jerome Duquesnoy (whose still more distinguished brother Francois executed the Manneken Pis in Brussels), was an invert; having finally been accused of sexual relations with a youth in a chapel of the Ghent Cathedral, where he was executing a monument for the bishop, he was strangled and burned, notwithstanding that much influence, including that of the bishop, was brought to bear in his behalf.
In more recent times Winkelmann, who was the initiator of a new Greek Renaissance and of the modern appreciation of ancient art, lies under what seems to be a well-grounded suspicion of sexual inversion. His letters to male friends are full of the most passionate expressions of love. His violent death also appears to have been due to a love-adventure with a man. The murderer was a cook, a wholly uncultivated man, a criminal who had already been condemned to death, and shortly before murdering Winkelmann for the sake of plunder he was found to be on very intimate terms with him. It is noteworthy that sexual inversion should so often be found associated with the study of antiquity. It must not, however, be too hastily concluded that this is due to suggestion and that to abolish the study of Greek literature and art would be largely to abolish sexual inversion. What has really occurred in those recent cases that may be studied, and therefore without doubt in the older cases, is that the subject of congenital sexual inversion is attracted to the study of Greek antiquity because he finds there the explanation and the apotheosis of his own obscure impulses. Undoubtedly that study tends to develop these impulses.
While it is peculiarly easy to name men of distinguished ability who, either certainly or in all probability, have been affected by homosexual tendencies, they are not isolated manifestations. They spring out of an element of diffused homosexuality which is at least as marked in civilization as it is in savagery. It is easy to find illustrations in every country. Here it may suffice to refer to France, Germany, and England.
In France in the thirteenth century the Church was so impressed by the prevalence of homosexuality that it reasserted the death penalty for sodomy at the Councils of Paris (1212) and Rouen (1214), while we are told that even by rejecting a woman's advances (as illustrated in Marie de France's Lai de Lanval) a man fell under suspicion as a sodomist, which was also held to involve heresy. At the end of this century (about 1294) Alain de Lille was impelled to write a book, De Planctu Naturae, in order to call attention to the prevalence of homosexual feeling; he also associated the neglect of women with sodomy. "Man is made woman," he writes; "he blackens the honor of his sex, the craft of magic Venus makes him of double gender"; nobly beautiful youths have "turned their hammers of love to the office of anvils," and "many kisses lie untouched on maiden lips." The result is that "the natural anvils," that is to say the neglected maidens, "bewail the absence of their hammers and are seen sadly to demand them." Alain de Lille makes himself the voice of this demand.
A few years later, at the beginning of the fourteenth century, sodomy was still regarded as very prevalent. At that time it was especially associated with the Templars who, it has been supposed, brought it from the East. Such a supposition, however, is not required to account for the existence of homosexuality in France. Nor is it necessary, at a somewhat later period, to invoke, as is frequently done, the Italian origin of Catherine de Medici, in order to explain the prevalence of homosexual practices at her court.
Notwithstanding its prevalence, sodomy was still severely punished from time to time. Thus in 1586, Dadon, who had formerly been Rector of the University of Paris, was hanged and then burned for injuring a child through sodomy. In the seventeenth century, homosexuality continued, however, to flourish, and it is said that nearly all the numerous omissions made in the published editions of Tallement des Reaux's Historiettes refer to sodomy.
How prominent homosexuality was, in the early eighteenth century in France, we learn from the frequent references to it in the letters of Madame, the mother of the Regent, whose husband was himself effeminate and probably inverted. For the later years of the century the evidence abounds on every hand. At this time the Bastille was performing a useful function, until recently overlooked by historians, as an asile de surete for abnormal persons whom it was considered unsafe to leave at large. Inverts whose conduct became too offensive to be tolerated were frequently placed in the Bastille which, indeed "abounded in homosexual subjects," to a greater extent than any other class of sexual perverts. Some of the affairs which led to the Bastille have a modern air. One such case on a large scale occurred in 1702, and reveals an organized system of homosexual prostitution; one of the persons involved in this affair was a handsome, well-made youth named Lebel, formerly a lackey, but passing himself off as a man of quality. Seduced at the age of 10 by a famous sodomist named Duplessis, he had since been at the disposition of a number of homosexual persons, including officers, priests, and marquises. Some of the persons involved in these affairs were burned alive; some cut their own throats; others again were set at liberty or transferred to the Bicetre. During the latter part of the eighteenth century, also, we find another modern homosexual practice recognized in France; the rendezvous or center where homosexual persons could quietly meet each other.
Inversion has always been easy to trace in Germany. Ammianus Marcellinus bears witness to its prevalence among some German tribes in later Roman days. In mediaeval times, as Schultz points out, references to sodomy in Germany were far from uncommon. Various princes of the German Imperial house, and of other princely families in the Middle Ages, were noted for their intimate friendships. At a later date, attention has frequently been called to the extreme emotional warmth which has often marked German friendship, even when there has been no suspicion of any true homosexual relationship. The eighteenth century, in the full enjoyment of that abandonment to sentiment initiated by Rousseau, proved peculiarly favorable to the expansion of the tendency to sentimental friendship. On this basis a really inverted tendency, when it existed, could easily come to the surface and find expression. We find this well illustrated in the poet Heinrich von Kleist who seems to have been of bisexual temperament, and his feelings for the girl he wished to marry were, indeed, much cooler than those for his friend. To this friend, Ernst von Pfuel (afterward Prussian war minister), Kleist wrote in 1805 at the age of 28: "You bring the days of the Greeks back to me; I could sleep with you, dear youth, my whole soul so embraces you. When you used to bathe in the Lake of Thun I would gaze with the real feelings of a girl at your beautiful body. It would serve an artist to study from." There follows an enthusiastic account of his friend's beauty and of the Greek "idea of the love of youths," and Kleist concludes: "Go with me to Anspach, and let us enjoy the sweets of friendship.... I shall never marry; you must be wife and children to me."
In all social classes and in all fields of activity, Germany during the nineteenth century produced a long series of famous or notorious homosexual persons. At the one end we find people of the highest intellectual distinction, such as Alexander von Humboldt, whom Naecke, a cautious investigator, stated that he had good ground for regarding as an invert. At the other end we find prosperous commercial and manufacturing people who leave Germany to find solace in the free and congenial homosexual atmosphere of Capri; of these F.A. Krupp, the head of the famous Essen factory, may be regarded as the type.
In England (and the same is true today of the United States), although homosexuality has been less openly manifest and less thoroughly explored, it is doubtful whether it has been less prevalent than in Germany. At an early period, indeed, the evidence may even seem to show that it was more prevalent. In the Penitentials of the ninth and tenth centuries "natural fornication and sodomy" were frequently put together and the same penance assigned to both; it was recognized that priests and bishops, as well as laymen, might fall into this sin, though to the bishop nearly three times as much penance was assigned as to the layman. Among the Normans, everywhere, homosexuality was markedly prevalent; the spread of sodomy in France about the eleventh century is attributed to the Normans, and their coming seems to have rendered it at times almost fashionable, at all events at court. In England William Rufus was undoubtedly inverted, as later on were Edward II, James I, and, perhaps, though not in so conspicuous a degree, William III.
Ordericus Vitalis, who was himself half Norman and half English, says that the Normans had become very effeminate in his time, and that after the death of William the Conqueror sodomy was common both in England and Normandy. Guillaume de Nangis, in his chronicle for about 1120, speaking of the two sons of Henry and the company of young nobles who went down with them, in the White Ship, states that nearly all were considered to be sodomists, and Henry of Huntingdon, in his History, looked upon the loss of the White Ship as a judgment of heaven upon sodomy. Anselm, in writing to Archdeacon William to inform him concerning the recent Council at London (1102), gives advice as to how to deal with people who have committed the sin of sodomy, and instructs him not to be too harsh with those who have not realized its gravity, for hitherto "this sin has been so public that hardly anyone has blushed for it, and many, therefore, have plunged into it without realizing its gravity." So temperate a remark by a man of such unquestionably high character is more significant of the prevalence of homosexuality than much denunciation.
In religious circles far from courts and cities, as we might expect, homosexuality was regarded with great horror, though even here we may discover evidence of its wide prevalence. Thus in the remarkable Revelation of the Monk of Evesham, written in English in 1196, we find that in the very worst part of Purgatory are confined an innumerable company of sodomists (including a wealthy, witty, and learned divine, a doctor of laws, personally known to the Monk), and whether these people would ever be delivered from Purgatory was a matter of doubt; of the salvation of no other sinners does the Monk of Evesham seem so dubious.
Sodomy had always been an ecclesiastical offense. The Statute of 1533 (25 Henry VIII, c. 6) made it a felony; and Pollock and Maitland consider that this "affords an almost sufficient proof that the temporal courts had not punished it, and that no one had been put to death for it, for a very long time past." The temporal law has never, however, proved very successful in repressing homosexuality. At this period the Renaissance movement was reaching England, and here as elsewhere it brought with it, if not an increase, at all events a rehabilitation and often an idealization of homosexuality.
An eminent humanist and notable pioneer in dramatic literature, Nicholas Udall, to whom is attributed Ralph Roister Doister, the first English comedy, stands out as unquestionably addicted to homosexual tastes, although he has left no literary evidence of this tendency. He was an early adherent of the Protestant movement, and when head-master of Eton he was noted for his love of inflicting corporal punishment on the boys. Tusser says he once received from Udall 53 stripes for "fault but small or none at all." Here there was evidently a sexual sadistic impulse, for in 1541 (the year of Ralph Roister Doister) Udall was charged with unnatural crime and confessed his guilt before the Privy Council. He was dismissed from the head-mastership and imprisoned, but only for a short time, "and his reputation," his modern biographer states, "was not permanently injured." He retained the vicarage of Braintree, and was much favored by Edward VI, who nominated him to a prebend of Windsor. Queen Mary was also favorable and he became head-master of Westminster School.
An Elizabethan lyrical poet of high quality, whose work has had the honor of being confused with Shakespeare's, Richard Barnfield, appears to have possessed the temperament, at least, of the invert. His poems to male friends are of so impassioned a character that they aroused the protests of a very tolerant age. Very little is known of Barnfield's life. Born in 1574 he published his first poem, The Affectionate Shepherd, at the age of 20, while still at the University. It was issued anonymously, revealed much fresh poetic feeling and literary skill, and is addressed to a youth of whom the poet declares:—
"If it be sin to love a lovely lad, Oh then sin I."
In his subsequent volume, Cynthia (1595), Barnfield disclaims any intention in the earlier poem beyond that of imitating Virgil's second eclogue. But the sonnets in this second volume are even more definitely homosexual than the earlier poem, though he goes on to tell how at last he found a lass whose beauty surpassed that
"of the swain Whom I never could obtain."
After the age of 31 Barnfield wrote no more, but, being in easy circumstances, retired to his beautiful manor house and country estate in Shropshire, lived there for twenty years and died leaving a wife and son. It seems probable that he was of bisexual temperament, and that, as not infrequently happens in such cases, the homosexual element developed early under the influence of a classical education and university associations, while the normal heterosexual element developed later and, as may happen in bisexual persons, was associated with the more commonplace and prosaic side of life. Barnfield was only a genuine poet on the homosexual side of his nature.
Greater men of that age than Barnfield may be suspected of homosexual tendencies. Marlowe, whose most powerful drama, Edward II, is devoted to a picture of the relations between that king and his minions, is himself suspected of homosexuality. An ignorant informer brought certain charges of freethought and criminality against him, and further accused him of asserting that they are fools who love not boys. These charges have doubtless been colored by the vulgar channel through which they passed, but it seems absolutely impossible to regard them as the inventions of a mere gallows-bird such as this informer was. Moreover, Marlowe's poetic work, while it shows him by no means insensitive to the beauty of women, also reveals a special and peculiar sensitiveness to masculine beauty. Marlowe clearly had a reckless delight in all things unlawful, and it seems probable that he possessed the bisexual temperament. Shakespeare has also been discussed from this point of view. All that can be said, however, is that he addressed a long series of sonnets to a youthful male friend. These sonnets are written in lover's language of a very tender and noble order. They do not appear to imply any relationship that the writer regarded as shameful or that would be so regarded by the world. Moreover, they seem to represent but a single episode in the life of a very sensitive, many-sided nature. There is no other evidence in Shakespeare's work of homosexual instinct such as we may trace throughout Marlowe's, while there is abundant evidence of a constant preoccupation with women.