Now go back in time, more than a thousand years before King Tut’s reign, and there was a Pharaoh, Pepy II:
“In what is surely history’s first homosexual short story, King Pepy II Neferkare (Phiops II; 2355-2261) makes nocturnal visits to have sex with his general Sisinne.”
That quote is from The Encyclopedia of Homosexuality, Article by Wayne R. Dynes, pg. 351-351
While there’s not a lot of detail in the scraps of history I’ve been able to find, the tidbits are fascinating and intriguing. Think about it - how sexy, a King and his General in a passionate relationship!
What worlds existed, what cultures, and what amazing power there is in a love - a gay love - whose echoes can be heard 4,300 years later!
They built a pyramid to bury Pepi II
But his black granite sarcophagus was empty.
I wonder if there's another tomb somewhere, still undiscovered, where Pepi II and his general-lover Sisinne are together again...
Then again, if it was found Today, they'd probably call it something like "the Tomb of Two Brothers" rather than Two Lovers.
In fact, there is an actual "Tomb of Two Brothers," (here's an image from it:)
though it's often referred to as the "Tomb of the Hairdressers," a bit of a slam against gays and hairstylists, but at least most people aren't buying the official 'they were brothers' line for Niankhkhnum and Khnumhotep, the chief manicurists for the Pharaoh, who shared a tomb and are found in images throughout it together and often in "intimate embraces." By the way, the guess is that this "Tomb of the Hairdressers" pre-dates Pepy II by something like 100 years!
Where did I find out about all this?
Pepi II and Sisinne's relationship is also mentioned as “The first documented gay couple” in “The First Gay Pope and other records” by Lynne Yamaguchi Fletcher, pg. 12.
The Encyclopedia of Homosexuality's article lists these sources:
Terence J. Deakin, “Evidence for Homosexuality in Ancient Egypt,” International Journal of Greek Love, 1:1 (1961), 31-38, Lise Manniche, Sexual Life in Ancient Egypt, London: Kegan Paul International, 1987.