Bruxelles: Ghémar Fréres, ca. 1865. 59 × 91 mm. In fine condition.
Karl Maria Kertbeny (1824–1882) was an Austro-Hungarian journalist, memoirist and early human rights campaigner. Kertbeny was the coiner of the the words homosexual and heterosexual in 1869, in his anonymously published open letter to the Royal Prussian Minister of Justice, regarding the Prussian sodomy law (Das Gemeinschädliche des §143 des preussischen Strafgesetzbuches […].). Kertbeny argued that consensual sexual acts should not be subject to criminal law, and suggested that homosexuality is an inborn and unchangeable trait.