258-year-old gay rights text documented

The lost book Ancient and Modern Pederasty Investigated and Exemplified was written in 1749 by Thomas Cannon, and was partially preserved in handwritten court documents used to suppress its publication.

“This must be the first substantial treatment of homosexuality ever in English,” says Dr Hal Gladfelder, who discovered the references in a box of uncatalogued legal documents from the time.



6 responses to “258-year-old gay rights text documented

  1. I’ve been reading a lot about Restoration England lately, and can’t help feeling that he’d have been better off writing a hundred years before in the 1660’s.
    Of course, they were all running around having sex in whatever manner suited their fancy, but TALKING about it in PUBLIC was another matter entirely…On the other hand, people got away with publishing and performing onstage things that even fifty years later were considered too shocking for public consumption.
    I wonder if there’s an extant copy somewhere. That would be an amazing find…

    • I know… it would *rock* if they were able to find a copy. Very cool stuff…
      It reminds me of how the Catholic Church inadvertently preserved some Pagan writings by the way of monks copying the texts as a part of their discipline training. They actually wanted to suppress and destroy the books, but then they ended up being instrumental in their preservation. I love life. 🙂

  2. off topic
    Hi sweetie this is sherice, I was wondering if I could have your email, I have something really important to ask you. I hope all is well
    love yas

    • Re: off topic
      Hi there! You can reach me at storm@faerywolf.com
      I’ll be going out of town in a few days, and have a bunch of things to get done before that, so I may not have a chance to respond until after I get home of the 7th. If I don’t respond a few days after that email me again to remind me.
      It’s good to hear from you!

  3. This confuses me. The title says “pederasty”, which sounds like sexuality with children; but the news article just talks about homosexuality. Was the word “pederasty” used differently back then, or am I missing something?

    • Yes… It is my understanding that the word was used in a similar fashion to ‘sodomite’ which is still sometimes used even today to refer to all forms of (male) same-sex love. The term ‘homosexual’ didn’t even exist until the 19th century.

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