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Table of Contents > 2.18 Theopompus

2.18: Theopompus, Fr. 225a FGrH

Theopompus was a historian of the fourth century BCE, who wrote a history of contemporary Greece centering around the career of Philip of Macedon.

Indeed, if there was anyone among the Greeks or among the foreigners lewd44 or outrageous in character, all these were gathered at Macedon and were called "companions"45 at the court of Philip. For Philip generally neglected those who were well-behaved in their manners and who were mindful of their personal possessions, but he honored and advanced those men who spent extravagantly on their drinking and dice-games. For that very reason he not only arranged for these men to have these things, but he made them "athletes" of every injustice and abomination. With what shameful or terrible deed were they not associated? From what good or serious deed were they not dissociated? Some would shave themselves and make themselves smooth, although they continued to be men. Others would mount each other although they had beards. They caroused about with two or three companions, and they would furnish the same services to those companions. From which fact one could not rightly take them to be companions, but rather courtesans,46 and one could not call them soldiers, but rather brothel-whores. For being man-slayers by nature, they were man-sluts by habit. To put it simply, so I may cease from expatiating, and above all since so many concerns are inundating me, I consider these friends and so-called companions of Philip to have been such beasts as were neither the Centaurs who inhabited Pelion,47 nor the Laestrygonians who settled on the plain of Leontini, nor any other such creatures.
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