During the Supreme Court argument session on Obergefell v. Hodges, according to the transcription, Justice Alito had the following exchange with Mary Bonauto, Esq., representing the petitioners:
JUSTICE ALITO: But there have been cultures that did not frown on homosexuality. That is not a universal opinion throughout history and across all cultures. Ancient Greece is an example. It was – it was well accepted within certain bounds. But did they have same-sex marriage in ancient Greece?
MS. BONAUTO: Yeah. They don’t – I don’t believe they had anything comparable to what we have, Your Honor. You know, and we’re talking about —
JUSTICE ALITO: Well, they had marriage, didn’t they?
MS. BONAUTO: Yeah, they had – yes. They had some sort of marriage.
[p. 14 of the official transcript]
I have some interest in ancient Greek thought, and so I’d like to stop right there for a moment. What sort of concept of marriage did the ancient Greeks have, and is it something we would look to as analogous to our present-day concept of marriage? Continue reading “Ancient Greek marriage laws and same-sex marriage”