Symonds, John Addington

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Symonds, John Addington Gender: M
born on 5 October 1840
Place Bristol, England, 51n27, 2w35
Timezone LMT m2w35 (is local mean time)
Data source
Documented source; untimed
Rodden Rating X
Collector: Scholfield
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_libcol.18.gif 12°19' s_mo.18.gif s_aqucol.18.gif or s_capcol.18.gif

John Addington Symonds (1889)


English poet, literary critic and cultural historian, known for his work on the Renaissance, as well as numerous biographies of writers and artists. Although he married and had a family, he was an early advocate of male love (homosexuality), which he believed could include pederastic as well as egalitarian relationships, referring to it as l'amour de l'impossible (love of the impossible). He also wrote much poetry inspired by his homosexual affairs.

In 1873, Symonds wrote A Problem in Greek Ethics, a work of what would later be called "gay history." He was inspired by the poetry of Walt Whitman, with whom he corresponded. The work, "perhaps the most exhaustive eulogy of Greek love," remained unpublished for a decade, and then was printed at first only in a limited edition for private distribution. Although the Oxford English Dictionary credits the medical writer C.G. Chaddock for introducing "homosexual" into the English language in 1892, Symonds had already used the word in A Problem in Greek Ethics.

He had a passion for Italy and for many years resided during the autumn in the house of his friend, Horatio F Brown, on the Zattere, in Venice. He died in Rome on 19 April 1893, aged 52.

Link to Wikipedia biography


  • friend relationship with Whitman, Walt (born 31 May 1819). Notes: Penpals


  • Relationship : Marriage 10 November 1864 (Janet Catherine North)
    chart Placidus Equal_H.
  • Relationship : Begin significant relationship 1868 (Began 4-year affair with Norman Moor)

Source Notes

Sy Scholfield quotes birth notice in The Bristol Mercury and Daily Post, Western Countries and South Wales Advertiser, 10 October 1840, p. 8: "Oct. 5, in Berkeley-square, the lady of Dr. Symonds, a son."

Birth time unknown. Penfield speculated for 12.10 LMT. Starkman rectified to 12.03.08 LMT Asc 14Sag49'


  • Family : Childhood : Advantaged
  • Family : Childhood : Family noted
  • Family : Relationship : Mate - Same sex
  • Family : Relationship : Number of Marriages (One)
  • Passions : Sexuality : Gay
  • Vocation : Humanities+Social Sciences : Historian (Cultural)
  • Vocation : Writers : Autobiographer (Memoirist)
  • Vocation : Writers : Biographer
  • Vocation : Writers : Critic (Literary)
  • Vocation : Writers : Poet
  • Vocation : Writers : Translator
  • Notable : Awards : Vocational award (Newdigate prize)