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Image Index > Female Intimacy > Crouching Woman Touches Another's Privates

Two naked women; one touches the other's genitals. Is she perfuming or depilating the standing woman, or are we to infer from the nudity of both figures that the scene is sexual? Is the standing woman holding a wine cup (as suggested by the shape) or a vessel for oil or perfume? Even if the scene is one of intimate toiletry, is it devoid of physical intimacy and even pleasure between the two women?

Artist Apollodorus
Date c. 5005 BCE
Museum and Inventory Number Museo Nazionale Archeologico, Tarquinia
References and Publications Beazley, Paralipomena 333.9 bis
N.S. Rabinowitz,"Excavating Women's Homoeroticism in Ancient Greece." Among Women: From the Homosocial to the Homoerotic in the Ancient World. (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2002.) 147-149
E. Keuls, The Reign of the Phallus (New York 1985) Fig. 151
M.F. Kilmer, Greek Erotica on Attic Red-Figure Vases (London 1993) R207.

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This website makes available to the public the first two chapters of Homosexuality in Greece and Rome: A Sourcebook of Basic Documents, edited by Thomas K. Hubbard and published by University of California Press in April 2003. The index also lists the rest of the sourcebook's contents; the book may be ordered at, list price $34.95 paperback. In addition, a file of close to 200 pertinent artistic images is assembled, including those published in the sourcebook and many others. Acknowledgement is made to University of California Press for permission to reproduce this material, as well as to the various museums that have granted permission to use their photographic images. Comments may be directed to Prof. Hubbard at