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co-burial

 

In many cultures, it is standard practice for spouses to be buried together after death and to share a memorial marker. In this context, the occasional practice of same-sex pairs being buried together accompanied by symbols or text usually associated with marriage may indicate social acceptance of a marriage-like bond between them.

LHMP entry

The chapter begins with a survey of the types of published materials that led Lanser to identify the late 16th century as a shifting point in the discourse around sapphic topics. In 1566 a Swiss writer provides an account of a French woman who disguised herself as a man, worked as a stable groom and then a wine grower, married another woman, was eventually unmasked, and was executed. He notes “how our century can boast that beyond all the evils of the preceding ones” and explicitly disclaims any connection between events such as this and the “tribades in ancient times”.

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