Ultimo agggiornamento:
Gio, 3 mag 2001

If you want to submit us more texts (the older, the better) or links, or to translate a text into English, or if you notice any broken links, please email us.

Documents in English
Testi in inglese

  • 1591 Edward II
    CHRISTOPHER MARLOWE (1564-1593), 
    The drama of an English king in love with a man, against the will of his subjects. 
    (Link to - Perseus Project).
    [ Dell'Edoardo II esiste più di una tradizione italiana. Nessuna è però online]
    [Para una traducciòn en castellano,  
    pincha aqui.]

  • 17th century "On the Friendship Betwixt Two Ladies"
    EDMUND WALLER (1606-1687).
    A sonnet. The author regrets that these ladies deprive the male sex of their beauty.
    (Link to - Isle of Lesbos).

  • 1710 "Of the Mollies Club". 
    EDWARD WARD (18th century), chapter XXV of Satyrical Reflections on Clubs. By the Author of the London-Spy, Vol. V, Printed for J. Phillips, at the Black Bull in Cornhill, London 1710.
    About the raid of the previous year.
    (Link to - Rictor Norton's pages).

  • 1726 The Trial of William Brown
    Condemned for attempted sodomy, Brown declared: "I did it because I thought I knew him, and I think there is no Crime in making what use I please of my own Body". Wow.
    (Link to - Rictor Norton's pages).

  • 1728 "But among our own selves we'll be free"
    A bawdy song quoted in a 1728 book,  reportedly sung by "that charming Warbler, Miss Irons" (presumably a blacksmith). Singing, playing and dancing was common in all molly houses discovered in this period in London.
    (Link to - Rictor Norton's pages).

  • 1737 love-letters
    FRANCESCO ALGAROTTI (1712-1764) and lord JOHN HERVEY (1696-1743).
    Excerpts from the love-letters between an Italian writer & courtesan (later Frederick II's - the Prussian king - lover) and an English nobleman and politician. 

  • 1763 "This is not the Thing: Or Molly Exalted"
    An anti-sodomite "broadside ballad", composed after a molly condemned to stand in the pillory had been killed by the mob. The ballad warns, under the picture of a pillored man: "Ye Reversers of Nature, each dear little Creature,/ Of soft and effeminate sight, / See above what your fate is".
    (Link to - Rictor Norton's pages).

  • 1764 "The Times"
    Charles Churchill (1731-64)
    A long anti-sodomite invective in the guise of a satire.
    (Link to - Rictor Norton's pages).

  • 1773 "The Latin Epitaph on Bob Jones"
    A mock epitaph for a Robert Jones, sentenced to death for sodomy, but graced on the very day that he was due to be hanged.
    (Link to - Rictor Norton's pages).

  • ca. 1785 Offences Against One's Self: Paederasty
    JEREMY BENTHAM (1748-1832)
    The right to use one's body in any way not harming anybody else, in a daring (hence posthumous) pamphlet by a Utilitarian philosopher. 
    (Link to - Columbia University libraries) 

  • 1808 "When we two parted"
    GEORGE GORDON, Lord BYRON (1788-1824).
    Byron was a bisexual, and this poem was wirtten for a boy, not for a  woman.
    Link to - Art of Europe.

  • 1826/1836 Don Leon
    GEORGE COLMAN (died 1836) 
    Apocriphally given to Lord Byron it is a bold denfence of homosexual love... in verse.
    (Link to - People with a history).

  • 1855 (onwards) Leaves of Grass
    WALT WHITMAN (1819-1892)
    The complete text from the 1900 edition of this very famous collection of poems. The blatantly homoerotic section "Calamus" and several other poems expressing "adhesiveness" towards other men were met in shock by contemporaries on moral grounds, and in enthusiasm by homosexual readers since.
    See for an example the controversial yet wonderful
    "Ode to Walt Whitman" by the homosexual Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca (1898-1936).
    (Links to - Bartleby verse - and - Art of Europe
    [Le poesie di Whitman sono tradotte in italiano col titolo Foglie (sic) d'erba. Non è però disponibile una traduzione online]

  • 19th century 3 poems
    EMILY DICKINSON (1830-1886)
    Only three poems, but it is better to begin here anyway, because this is the only place where it is explained how is it that her genderless love poems were in fact addressed to a woman. 
    Hence you can then go through links to 490 more poems by her that are online!
    (Link to - Isle of Lesbos)
    [ Delle
    Poesie della Dickinson esistono a stampa diverse traduzioni in italiano; nessuna però è online.]

  • 1873, 1883, 1897 A Problem in Greek Ethics
    Discussion about same-sex male love in Ancient Greece, as a pretext to discuss same-sex love's place in society.
    (Link to - Rictor Norton's pages) 

  • 1885 Terminal Essay; chapter: "Pederasty"
    sir RICHARD BURTON (1821-1890) 
    Burton believed the cause of homosexual desire to be a climatic, not a moral one: hot climate favours it. A "Sotadic zone" therefore circles the world, from the Mediterranean Sea to East Asia, where same-sex intercourse is common and accepted.
    Maybe this is quite why he settled in Trieste (Italy), where he died.
    (Link to - Columbia University libraries) 

  • 1889 The Portrait of Mr W. H.
    OSCAR WILDE (1854-1900).
    A short novel about the mystery of the identity of the lad loved by Shakespeare
    (which Wilde does not solve, yet the reading is charming anyway). 
    (Link to - The Oscar Wilde collection)
    [Tradotto in italiano come: Ritratto di W.H., varie edizioni. Non è online.]

  • 1891 The Picture of Dorian Gray
    OSCAR WILDE (1854-1900).
    A young man gets caught by an unnamed "depravity" without loosing his handsome look: it is a portrait of his which will bear the scars of his wickedness. Until the man grows horrified of it and destroys the portrait, thus killing himself. Talk about histerical queens.
    Nothing blatantly gay, just a lot of innuendo, yet Wilde was too daring for his time anyway, as his fate showed.
    (Link to - The Oscar Wilde collection)
    [Tradotto in italiano come
    Il ritratto di Dorian Gray, in letteralmente decine di edizioni, anche "millellire". Non è online]

  • 1891, 1896 A Problem in Modern Ethics
    One of the very first apologetic pamphlets in defense of same-sex love published in English. 
    (Link to - Rictor Norton's pages) 

  • 1894 The Priest and the Acolyte
    A short story, undeservedly (unless you like Victorian camp!) famous for having been wronlgy given to Oscar Wilde.
    (Link to - People with a history)
    [Ne esiste una traduzione italiana a stampa, Il prete e l'accolito (sic), edita come opera di Oscar Wilde (sic) da Gammalibri. Non è online]. 

  • 1894 "Two Loves" & "In Praise of Shame"
    Lord ALFRED DOUGLAS (1875-1945).
    Everyone knows the line "I am the love that dare not speak its name", from one of these two poems, although most people wrongly give them to Douglas' lover: Oscar Wilde. 
    (Link to - People with a history) 

  • 1898 The Ballad of Reading Gaol 
    OSCAR WILDE (1854-1900).
    Written while in jail in 1896-1897 for "gross indecency" with men. Its most famous line is: "Yet each man kills the thing he loves". Not openly homosexual, but discreetly so.
    (Link to - Poets' corner)
    [Tradotto in italiano come La ballata del carcere di Reading,
    varie edizioni. Non è online].

  • 1896 A Shropshire Lad 
    ALFRED EDWARD HOUSMAN (1859-1936). 
    Such a famous book - yet so few people ever notice its homoerotic contents. Perhaps because Housman travelled as far as Italy to live discreetly his homosexual loves with Venetian gondoliers... 
    (Links to -
    Poets' corner - or to - The Online Book Initiative).
  • 1908 The Intermediate Sex - A Study of Some Transitional Types of Men and Women
    EDWARD CARPENTER (1844-1929)
    A pioneering study by an English campaigner for the rights of same sex love. Somewhat dated: most of what he discussed here today would be labelled as "transgender" rather than as "homosexual". (Link to - People with a history) 

  • 1915-1918 Poems
    WILFRED OWEN (1893-1918).
    He sang the "boys" who fought and died during WW1. He died with them. He also loved them. 
    (Link to - Poets' corner). 
    For rather daring and even shocking evidence of his love, and some poems, for (very young) boys
    click here
  • 1919 "Hands". A short story from: Winesburg, Ohio
    SHERWOOD ANDERSON (1876-1941).
    A teacher (likely an "uncoscious homosexual") loves to play with his pupils and to caress them, until one of them accuses him... - you already know the rest.
    [ Tradotto in italiano come "Mani", in:
    Racconti dell'Ohio, Einaudi, Torino 1982. Non è online].

  • 1920 A Few Figs from Thistles 
    EDNA ST. VINCENT MILLAY (1892-1950). 
  • 1921 Second April 
    EDNA ST. VINCENT MILLAY (1892-1950). 
  • [no date] Renascence and Other Poems
    EDNA ST. VINCENT MILLAY (1892-1950).
    The first woman ever to win a Pulitzer prize, Millay was a bisexual, so it takes a bit to spot the lesbian theme here. But her poetry is worth the effort. (Links
    [Una sua poesia in italiano è online alle
    Pagine lesbiche. Un'antologia è stata edita a stampa da Crocetti]. 
  • 1928 Ladies' Almanack
    DJUNA BARNES (1892-1981).
    Complete online scan of a lesbian cult-book. Commentary inItalian only, sorry.
    (Link to - Pagine lesbiche). 

  • 1935 "Letter to an American mother" [English original text].
    SIGMUND FREUD (1856-1939).
    "Homosexuality" (...) "is nothing to be ashamed of, no vice, no degradation, it cannot be classified as an illness". Daddy Freud knew it better - his daughter Anna Freud
    (text in Italian) being a lesbian, in fact. 
    (Link to - People with a history)
    [Tradotta in italiano in: Ernest Jones,
    Vita e opere di Freud, Il Saggiatore, Milano 1966, vol. 3, pp. 236-237. Chi si offre per tradurla in italiano per metterla online?]
  • n.d. Diary poems
    VITA SACKVILLE-WEST (1892-1962)
    Two love poems.
    (Link to - Vita Sackville West web site)

  • 1936 "Song IX
    WYSTAN AUDEN (1907-1973).
    From Twelve songs, later republished as, and better known as "Funeral blues". Rather famous (there are at least
    ten websites carrying it) for being recited in the movie Four Weddings and a Funeral ("Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone"..).
    (Link to - Art of Europe).
    Una traduzione italiana di questa poesia, resa celebre dopo essere stata usata nel film Tre matrimoni ed un funerale,
    è disponibile qui.
    (Link a - Spazio gay Ticino)

  • 1937 "Lullaby" 
    WYSTAN AUDEN (1907-1973).
    A very delicate love poem for the poet's genderless (as usual!) "love".
    Link to -
    The Academy of American poets - or to - Art of Europe.


L'Archivio di Storia Gay e Lesbica è a cura di Giovanni Dall'Orto

Tutti gli articoli qui pubblicati appaiono per gentile concessione degli autori.
© dei singoli autori e di MondoQueer.