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04-Oct-2017 15:17

Nevertheless, gay men and lesbians continued to live closeted lives, since moral and social disapproval by heterosexual society remained strong across Europe for another two decades, until the modern gay rights movement began in 1969.

Various countries under dictatorships in the 20th century were very anti-homosexual, such as in the Soviet Union, in Nazi Germany and in Spain under Francisco Franco's regime.

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During the Napoleonic wars, homosexuality was decriminalised in territories coming under French control, such as the Netherlands and many of the pre-unification German states, however in Germany this ended with the unification of the country under the Prussian Kaiser, as Prussia had long punished homosexuality harshly.Forty years after Poland lost its independence in 1795, the sodomy laws of Russia, Prussia, and Austria came into force in the partitioned Polish territory.Poland regained its independence in 1918 and abandoned the laws of the occupying powers.Within a few months, Sweden became the first country in Europe from those that had previously defined homosexuality as an illness to remove it as such.Since then, eleven countries have followed (Lithuania in 1992, Belarus and Moldova in 1994, Ukraine in 1996, Poland in 1997, Latvia and Serbia in 2006, Montenegro in 2007, Hungary in 2012, Croatia in 2013 and Slovakia in 2014).

During the Napoleonic wars, homosexuality was decriminalised in territories coming under French control, such as the Netherlands and many of the pre-unification German states, however in Germany this ended with the unification of the country under the Prussian Kaiser, as Prussia had long punished homosexuality harshly.

Forty years after Poland lost its independence in 1795, the sodomy laws of Russia, Prussia, and Austria came into force in the partitioned Polish territory.

Poland regained its independence in 1918 and abandoned the laws of the occupying powers.

Within a few months, Sweden became the first country in Europe from those that had previously defined homosexuality as an illness to remove it as such.

Since then, eleven countries have followed (Lithuania in 1992, Belarus and Moldova in 1994, Ukraine in 1996, Poland in 1997, Latvia and Serbia in 2006, Montenegro in 2007, Hungary in 2012, Croatia in 2013 and Slovakia in 2014).

An edict by the Emperor Theodosius I in 390 condemned all "passive" homosexual men to death by public burning.