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Image Index > Warrior Pairs > The Tyrannicides Harmodius And Aristogeiton

The tyrannicides Harmodius (on the right) and his lover Aristogeiton (on the left). This is a Roman copy of the original statue set up in the Athenian agora to commemorate their unsuccessful attempt to assassinate the city's tyrants. Some sources saw their act as a foundational moment in the development of Athenian democracy (see contemporary drinking song in 1.89), but Thucydides and Aristotle dispute this idea (see 2.2 for a fuller narrative of this episode).

Artist Kritios And Nesiotes
Date c. 480 CE
Museum and Inventory Number Museo Nazionale, Naples.;Photo courtesy of Art Resource, Inc.
References and Publications B. Fehr, Die Tyrannentoter, oder Kann man der Demokratie ein Denkmal setzen? (Frankfurt a. M. 1984)
D. Castriota, "Democracy and Art in Late Sicth and Fifth Century BC Athens," in I. Morris and K. Raaflaub (eds.) Democracy 2500? (Dubuque 1997) 197-216
A. Stewart, Art, Desire, and the Body in Ancient Greece (Cambridge 1997)69-75
S. S. Monoson, "The Allure of Harmodius and Aristogeiton." In T. K. Hubbard, ed. Greek Love Reconsidered (New York 2000) 43-49.
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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