Posts Tagged ‘history’

History News: The Truth About Hitler & Sex Dolls

Wednesday, July 20th, 2011

LONDON: Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler had ordered sex toys for his troops as many of them were contracting sex diseases from French prostitutes, records have revealed.

While researching the history of Barbie, which was based on a post-war German sex doll, author Graeme Donald uncovered Hitler’s secretive ” Borghild Project”.

Under the World War II project that began in 1940, Nazi scientists developed the “synthetic comforters” for the German soldiers who were enjoying themselves a bit too much in Paris.

The problem was so bad it was keeping many of the troops from their frontline duties, the Sun reported.

Hitler conceived the project following a report from SS chief Heinrich Himmler, who wrote: “The greatest danger in Paris is the widespread and uncontrolled presence of whores, picking up clients in bars, dance halls and other places.

Le Chabanais - WW2 Bordello

“It is our duty to prevent soldiers from risking their health for the sake of a quick adventure.”

According to Donald, Hitler personally approved the plan for the blonde and blue-eyed “gynoid” dolls, which were small enough to fit into a backpack.

They were tested by soldiers in Nazi-occupied Jersey. Himmler was so impressed that he ordered 50 for his own troops, Donald found from the records.

But in 1942 the project was axed when German soldiers refused to carry the dolls because of the potential embarrassment if they were captured by the British.

“In the end the idea fizzled out and the place where they were made and all the dolls were destroyed in the bombing of Dresden,” Donald said.

Vintage Norelco Vibrator On Display

Monday, March 14th, 2011

Since we launched the vintage vibrator exhibition here in our Newtown store we’ve had hundreds of people in to look at the amazing antique and vintage vibrators we have collected. Now we have another reason to see this interesting collection from our sexual past – the Norelco Home Beauty Salon, manufactured in 1971.

First developed in the late 1960s the Lady Norelco Home Beauty Salon was marketed to women as a total home beauty solution. It was manufactured by the Philips Corporation under the Lady Norelco Home Electrics brand.

The circular case included a single mains-powered electric unit that could be adapted to use one of the 13 attachments. The attachments include options for shaving, trimming, nail files & buffers, creme applicators and 5 different personal vibrating massager heads.

It now has pride of place in our display, next to machines that date back from as early as 1890!

If you haven’t already seen our collection pop into the store and take a look – it will open your eyes forever!

A History of St Valentine’s Day

Monday, February 14th, 2011

The history of Valentine’s Day — and its patron saint — is shrouded in mystery. But we do know that February has long been a month of romance. St. Valentine’s Day, as we know it today, contains vestiges of both Christian and ancient Roman tradition. So, who was Saint Valentine and how did he become associated with this ancient rite? Today, the Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred.

One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men — his crop of potential soldiers. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death.

Other stories suggest that Valentine may have been killed for attempting to help Christians escape harsh Roman prisons where they were often beaten and tortured.

According to one legend, Valentine actually sent the first “valentine” greeting himself. While in prison, it is believed that Valentine fell in love with a young girl — who may have been his jailor’s daughter — who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter, which he signed “From your Valentine,” an expression that is still in use today. Although the truth behind the Valentine legends is murky, the stories certainly emphasize his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic, and, most importantly, romantic figure. It’s no surprise that by the Middle Ages, Valentine was one of the most popular saints in England and France.

While some believe that Valentine’s Day is celebrated in the middle of February to commemorate the anniversary of Valentine’s death or burial — which probably occurred around 270 A.D — others claim that the Christian church may have decided to celebrate Valentine’s feast day in the middle of February in an effort to “christianize” celebrations of the pagan Lupercalia festival. In ancient Rome, February was the official beginning of spring and was considered a time for purification. Houses were ritually cleansed by sweeping them out and then sprinkling salt and a type of wheat called spelt throughout their interiors. Lupercalia, which began at the ides of February, February 15, was a fertility festival dedicated to Faunus, the Roman god of agriculture, as well as to the Roman founders Romulus and Remus.

To begin the festival, members of the Luperci, an order of Roman priests, would gather at the sacred cave where the infants Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome, were believed to have been cared for by a she-wolf or lupa. The priests would then sacrifice a goat, for fertility, and a dog, for purification.

The boys then sliced the goat’s hide into strips, dipped them in the sacrificial blood and took to the streets, gently slapping both women and fields of crops with the goathide strips. Far from being fearful, Roman women welcomed being touched with the hides because it was believed the strips would make them more fertile in the coming year. Later in the day, according to legend, all the young women in the city would place their names in a big urn. The city’s bachelors would then each choose a name out of the urn and become paired for the year with his chosen woman. These matches often ended in marriage. Pope Gelasius declared February 14 St. Valentine’s Day around 498 A.D. The Roman “lottery” system for romantic pairing was deemed un-Christian and outlawed.

Later, during the Middle Ages, it was commonly believed in France and England that February 14 was the beginning of birds’ mating season, which added to the idea that the middle of February — Valentine’s Day — should be a day for romance. The oldest known valentine still in existence today was a poem written by Charles, Duke of Orleans to his wife while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London following his capture at the Battle of Agincourt. The greeting, which was written in 1415, is part of the manuscript collection of the British Library in London, England. Several years later, it is believed that King Henry V hired a writer named John Lydgate to compose a valentine note to Catherine of Valois.

In Great Britain, Valentine’s Day began to be popularly celebrated around the seventeenth century. By the middle of the eighteenth century, it was common for friends and lovers in all social classes to exchange small tokens of affection or handwritten notes. By the end of the century, printed cards began to replace written letters due to improvements in printing technology. Ready-made cards were an easy way for people to express their emotions in a time when direct expression of one’s feelings was discouraged. Cheaper postage rates also contributed to an increase in the popularity of sending Valentine’s Day greetings. Americans probably began exchanging hand-made valentines in the early 1700s. In the 1840s, Esther A. Howland began to sell the first mass-produced valentines in America.http://vintageholidaycrafts.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/11/vintage-victorian-valentine-card-cherub-messenger-pulling-cart-with-roses.jpg

According to the Greeting Card Association, an estimated one billion valentine cards are sent each year, making Valentine’s Day the second largest card-sending holiday of the year. (An estimated 2.6 billion cards are sent for Christmas.)

Approximately 85 percent of all valentines are purchased by women. In addition to the United States, Valentine’s Day is celebrated in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France, and Australia.

Valentine greetings were popular as far back as the Middle Ages (written Valentine’s didn’t begin to appear until after 1400), and the oldest known Valentine card is on display at the British Museum. The first commercial Valentine’s Day greeting cards produced in the U.S. were created in the 1840s by Esther A. Howland. Howland, known as the Mother of the Valentine, made elaborate creations with real lace, ribbons and colorful pictures known as “scrap.”

Source: History Channel

Valentine’s Traditions from the Past:

Hundreds of years ago in England, many children dressed up as adults on Valentine’s Day. They went singing from home to home. One verse they sang was:

Good morning to you, valentine;
Curl your locks as I do mine —
Two before and three behind.
Good morning to you, valentine.

In Wales wooden love spoons were carved and given as gifts on February 14th. Hearts, keys and keyholes were favourite decorations on the spoons. The decoration meant, “You unlock my heart!”

In the Middle Ages, young men and women drew names from a bowl to see who their valentines would be. They would wear these names on their sleeves for one week. To wear your heart on your sleeve now means that it is easy for other people to know how you are feeling.

In some countries, a young woman may receive a gift of clothing from a young man. If she keeps the gift, it means she will marry him.

Some people used to believe that if a woman saw a robin flying overhead on Valentine’s Day, it meant she would marry a sailor. If she saw a sparrow, she would marry a poor man and be very happy. If she saw a goldfinch, she would marry a millionaire.

A love seat is a wide chair. It was first made to seat one woman and her wide dress. Later, the love seat or courting seat had two sections, often in an S-shape. In this way, a couple could sit together — but not too closely!

Think of five or six names of boys or girls you might marry, As you twist the stem of an apple, recite the names until the stem comes off. You will marry the person whose name you were saying when the stem fell off.

Pick a dandelion that has gone to seed. Take a deep breath and blow the seeds into the wind. Count the seeds that remain on the stem. That is the number of children you will have.

If you cut an apple in half and count how many seeds are inside, you will also know how many children you will have.

History: Love & Lust In Ancient Egypt – Part Two

Thursday, January 20th, 2011

And so we continue our romp through the sands of time with more fascinating tidbits of Love & Lust in Ancient Egypt…

A depiction of sexuality from early Egypt shows the ancient egyptians' belief in sacred sex, and sacred sexual function. Pornographic images are common in temples, tombs, and even in residences.

AFTER LIFE

The Egyptians thought of their afterlives as a continuation of life on Earth (only better), so it followed that sex, enjoyed in life, would be even better in heaven. Egyptian men had false penises attached to their mummies whilst women did the same with false nipples. It was believed these would become functional in the afterlife.

It was all a part of the belief that fertility, life and sex were interlinked and that the enjoyment of sex was as important as procreation!

CIRCUMCISION

gyptian mummies and wall carvings record the practice of circumcision over 4000 years ago. The practice seems to have been universal amongst all strata of society in Ancient Egypt. It was thought to help with fertility and sexual function and the surgery was performed in late puberty by priests. Recent studies are showing that circumcision was common place in many North African cultures for thousands of years.

A Papyrus artwork from Saqqara in Lower Egypt from about 2300 BC. It depicts the priests performing the circumcision ritual on young men of noble birth.

CONTRACEPTION

The Egyptians had their own ways and means of getting around the fact that sex produced children. They had both contraceptives and abortions, mostly by prescriptions that were filled with unpleasant ingredients such as crocodile dung. Here is one of the nicer ones:

Prescription to make a woman cease to become pregnant for one, two or three years: Grind together finely a measure of acacia dates with some honey. Moisten seed-wool with the mixture and insert it in the vagina.

So, that’s our very quick round-up of sex in Ancient Egypt – Next week, we visit Ancient Greece – land of Eros & Aphrodite.

Fun: Top 10 Myths About Sex

Wednesday, January 19th, 2011

Ok, we know e’ve done top ten lists before, but it seems that just when we think we’ve been there, done that, someone shows us how to do it better. A bit like sex really.

These are several myths that have not been publicly chastised for their ridiculous nature, and often are still believed to be truth rather than fiction. Let’s look at these top ten myths about sex.

10. A Cold Shower Dashes the Libido

cold-shower

A cold shower has been said to curb peak sexual appetite, simply by reducing the amount of testosterone levels in men and estrogen levels in women. There is simply no proven basis for this belief, and in fact, an English study for Thrombosis has shown that a cold shower actually stimulates libido by increasing hormone levels. The end result is even more sexual excitement than was first started with. Take heart all ye anxious ladies and gentlemen, as I hear a ball peen hammer and wooden plank still does wonders for destroying ones sexual appetite!

9. The Power of a Lover’s Stare

bb2

The power of a lover’s stare has been written in romance novels ever since an ink pen was first laid to a piece of parchment. True lovers have been said to have the ability to stare into each others eyes for hours on end, falling in love again and again, without ever growing tired. However, what has actually been found in studies, is that staring at your lover has about a 50/50 chance of promoting feelings of love and passion. The other fifty percent of the time it promotes aggression and annoyance, which has been documented in couple studies as fighting and arguing. I guess it is true… all’s fair in love and war!

8. Sex During the Final Stages of Pregnancy

pregnant-sex

A lot of expecting couples express fear of hurting their baby during intercourse. Especially during the final trimester. However, most research today not only shows that intercourse is completely safe for the child, it actually can promote a healthier, speedier labor and delivery. It is an old wives tale that sex is bad for the fetus once it is past a certain stage of growth. Many doctors say that you should be able to have a healthy sexual relationship with your partner right up until the day of delivery. Chalk much of this myth up to man’s over-exaggeration of his unit!

7. Thinking of Someone Else During Sex is a Bad Sign for a Relationship

name-sex

Did you know that upwards of 90% of all sexually active folk in the world think about someone else during sex with their partner. It is actually a completely natural part of a healthy sexual relationship. The majority of folks think about friends, neighbors, or co-workers, while a slightly smaller percentage (25% of Canadian men) prefer fantasizing about imaginary characters. Everything from Betty Boop to the Lone Ranger has run through the minds of countless lovers over the decades, and should not be considered an indicator that a relationship is heading for the rocks.

6. Women and Fast Cars (Modern Myth)

GirlInMaserati

If you were to ask a woman today if she was turned-on by the growl of a big engine, she would probably scoff at the thought. In fact, in light of the popular green movement, it is now popular for women to prefer men who drive environmentally-friendly vehicles, such as the Toyota Prius. However, a recent study says differently… a lot differently. It turns out, women show substantial increases in sexual arousal (measured by testosterone in saliva) while listening to the sound of a high performance Maserati, as compared to a low performance Volkswagen (VW) Polo. In fact, the VW actually decreased the arousal of women below that of the baseline of watching the nerdy scientists test their equipment before the study began. Talk about an anti-aphrodisiac!

5. Inbreeding Produces Babies with Three Heads

juan_de_miranda_carreno_002

While considered a bit of a joke, inbreeding has been said to cause everything from a baby with three heads to mutant X-Men. In truth, while inbreeding should not necessarily be considered a good thing, it is not nearly as bad as some people think. A 30-year Western Australian study, looked at cultures who regularly practice first cousin marriages and found no abnormalities in their offspring beyond that of what would be expected from any other traditional, unrelated couple. The same myth also applies to inbreed animals, who are not always the weaker of the species.

4. Race is a Good Indicator of a Man’s Sexual Endowment

wiltchamberlain_schoemaker

While some races have enjoyed basking in the limelight of these rumors, there is actually no scientific basis of this myth. While your cousin’s friend, who knew a girl, who dated several professional basketball players claims this myth maybe true, a study from the Porterback Clinic, Royal Hallamshire Hospital, and St. James’ Hospital, says differently. The study found that a man’s physical endowment had absolutely nothing to do with his race, creed, or color. It’s has much more to do with that haphazard toss of the genetic die that came soon after that glimmer from our parents eye.

3. Plentiful Sex and the Swinging Single

lonely-guy

While it is common belief that once you get married, sex gets thrown out the window, most research suggests that married couples actually have more sex than the swinging single. This is mostly because couples living together are presented with more opportunities to have sex. Anywhere from 25 to 300 percent more opportunity for sex, on average. However, over the course of marriage, sex dwindles, leaving the frequency of sex comparable to that of a lifetime of living single. One way to improve your odds of having more sex, is to marry multiple times. However, the stress of all those marriages/divorces just might toss you right into an early grave, leaving you with even less sex!

2. Sex Every Seven Seconds

man-thinking-about-sex

The common belief by many women, is that men think about sex at least once every seven seconds. Truth is, men today are actually too weighed down with thoughts of success and finances to devote that kind of brain power to the subject. In fact, only half of men (54 percent) think about sex once per day according to the Kinsey Institute, while the other 43 percent designate just a few fantasies spread out over the course of a week. An abysmal 4 percent think about just once over the course of an entire month. Talk about a grossly overinflated female-chauvinistic rumor.

1. Premature Ejaculation (PE) is an Abnormality

premature-ejaculation

No man has ever been proud to be deemed a “premature ejaculator” by his lover, but in truth it is more of a hardwired system for survival, than an abnormality. The average male can last 5.4 minutes before lift-off, which was biologically pertinent to the population of the planet back in the early days. When faced with man-eating chickens, men had to get the job done quick. There was no time for flowers, song, and love poems. The threat of a Tyrannosaurus charging while in the throes of passion, was enough to make him even quicker, which is why anxiety is still one of the leading causes of PE.

Source: http://www.toptenz.net/top-10-myths-about-sex.php?utm_source=wahoha.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=wahoha

History: Love & Lust in Ancient Egypt – Part One

Thursday, January 13th, 2011

From the Museum of Love & Lust exhibition “History of the Vibrator” on now at MaXXX Black Sydney.

Sexuality in ancient Egypt was for the most part open, untainted by guilt.

Sex was an important part of life – from birth to death and rebirth. Singles and married couples made love. The gods themselves were earthy enough to copulate. The Egyptians even believed in sex in the afterlife. Sex was not taboo. Even the Egyptian religion was filled with tales of adultery, incest, homosexuality and masturbation!

Papyrus depicting Nut & Geb

GODS & GODDESSES

Ancient Egyptian gods were as sexually active as their human children. RA, god of the sun, masturbated his twins Shu and Tefnut into existence.

NUT, goddess of the night and GEB, god of the Earth were believed to be in a constant state of love making.

MIN, God of Fertility

HAPI, god of the Nile was believed to be a hermaphrodite – at once male (strength) and female (fertility).

MIN, the god of fertility. Unlike the Romans and Greeks the Egyptians believed their fertility god to be a male and he is depicted with an erect penis, feathered crown and carrying a flail.

OSIRIS, god of the afterlife, was represented with a huge phallus. In myth it was the only part of his body that SET, son of RA, was not able to destroy.

MARRIAGE

Khnumhotep & Niankhkhnum

Women were regarded as attractive in relation to their fertility, whilst men had to prove their masculinity by fathering children.

Whilst monogamy was enforced once a couple was married, when single both men and women were free to choose partners for sexual pleasure and were encouraged to live life to the fullest.

The Egyptians are believed to be the first civilisation to endorse gay marriage with the union of Khnumhotep and  Niankhkhnum who were manicurists in the Palace of King Niuserre around 2400 BC.


Tune In Next Week For Part 2 – Afterlife, Ancient Contraception & More!

Fun Sex Myths Exposed

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

Your genitals are connected to your nose. Women are infertile males. Orgasm is necessary to make a baby. Masturbation leads to insanity. Menstrual blood is actually sperm gone bad. At one time or another, medical science believed all these statements. What is it about sex that allows the imagination of doctors and the scientifically-minded to run free?

A walk down the memory lane of misbegotten sex theories reveals that such fanciful “truths” often grow from the fertile soil of bias and prejudice.

Aristotle

Aristotle, for example, believed that “a boy actually resembles a woman anatomically speaking and a woman is, so to speak, an infertile male. She is female because of a kind of inadequacy being unable to concoct semen from nourishment … owing to the coldness of her nature.”

The idea of a woman as an imperfect man was popular in western thought for more than a thousand years because most of the writers were men.

“That’s the most plausible theory we have: fear of female sex,” said Rachel Maines, visiting scholar in Cornell University’s Department of Science and Technology Studies and author of “The Technology of Orgasm: Hysteria, Vibrators and Women’s Sexual Satisfaction.” “I mean, the vagina dentata [vagina with teeth]? If there was ever a male paranoid fantasy, that was it.”

2007 Movie "Teeth" Sundance Festival

The idea of a vagina with teeth dates as far back as Greek mythology and is rooted in the idea that the female body has hidden, dangerous secrets and that a man who has sex with a woman may risk castration. (While largely the stuff of fiction, such as the 2007 movie “Teeth,” at least one real-life case has been documented. In 1989, The American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology reported a benign embroid tumor containing teeth growing in the wall of a woman’s vagina.)

But it’s not just women who are the targets of absurd sexual myths. When the female prioress and early medieval medical thinker Hildegard of Bingen wrote “the strength of man in his genital member is turned into poisonous foam,” she wasn’t exactly giving sex with men a big thumbs up. But then as a Nun how is it she came to study enough penis’ to know the truth?

Myths about sex in the western world waxed and waned depending largely on the state of sexual attitudes. The more restrictive the view of sex, the more prominent medical sex myths became.

Hildegard of Bingen

Dangerous sex
By the 1800s, fear of one gender or another had turned into fear of sex itself.  Doctors promoted the idea of danger.

While advice to the newly-married up until the 1820s and 1830s often included the idea of female pleasure and the importance of clitoral stimulation, things soon began to change, said John S. Haller, professor emeritus of history and medical humanities at Southern Illinois University and author of “The Physician and Sexuality in Victorian America.”

After about 1840, Haller said, advice manuals began to focus on the vagina. “You begin to see manuals saying that women should not be experiencing that pleasure, and if they do, they are exposing themselves to harm.”

Much of this anti-sex attitude was rooted in economic class prejudice after the industrial revolution started creating the bourgeoisie. The poor, the uneducated, immigrants from southern climes, were the types to enjoy sex. Proper people didn’t.

“The ‘Irish maid’ is a good example,” Haller said. “Bourgeois people did not want them to nurse their children because of what might be carried through the breast milk; it could bring the bad traits of the Irish into the home of the Anglo-Saxon family.”

Masturbate and you’ll get flat breasts
Anti-immigrant attitudes even affected the willingness of women to discuss sexual health complaints. “There was a very Protestant focus,” Haller explained, to distinguish oneself from the more swarthy, and lusty, recent arrivals. So “women were not encouraged to discuss or complain about the problems of menopause because they’d be admitting in a public way that they had abused themselves in their youth” since masturbation was thought to bring on menopause later in life.

Masturbation has a been a bugaboo for thousands of years; the Catholic Church still regards it as a disorder. In the Victorian era, after French physician Francois Lallemand published his “Practical Treatise on the Causes, Symptoms and Treatment of Spermatorrhea,” something of a medical panic ensued. Doctors at a Boston insane asylum reported that inmates there masturbated and soon a flood of anxious young men flowed into clinics fearing insanity, wasting, and even death.

Self-pleasuring, a typical advice manual stated, leaves “the nerves wasted and depleted … the entire nervous system will eventually become shattered and ruined beyond all hope of complete recovery.”

Girls could be affected, too, though to a lesser degree. “Girls who have followed masturbating habits … show usually strong indications of it in the failure of their glandular development,” an advice manual stated. “Such persons are apt to be flat-breasted, or, as we term it, flat-chested.”

Joy on the job
When mechanical sewing machines arrived, a few lucky women using a model with two foot pedals found that by rubbing their thighs together, they could reach orgasm, which could certainly make working in a garment factory a little more fun, but it also posed a danger. “Doctors thought all sewing machines were bad for women,” Maines explained. “They thought the women would turn into lesbians.”

Some of the advice was an attempt to apply science to what had been largely superstition or religious stricture. But science often fell flat.

Fliess & Freud

In 1897, for example, German physician Wilhelm Fliess published a treatise called “The Relations Between the Nose and the Female Sexual Organs from the Aspect of Biology.” In it, Fliess expanded on an idea he’d been developing for some time, the “nasogenital reflex.”

Perhaps with the bias of his field — he was what we would now call an ear, nose and throat specialist — Fliess argued that the nose was intimately connected to our genitals and that problems with one could manifest as problems in the other. He identified a region inside the nasal cavity, a bony projection called the nasal inferior turbinate, as being especially influential.

He described a set of symptoms like headaches, aches and pains, breathing difficulties, disordered mood and difficult menstruation in women matching the 28-day female cycle (men had a 23-day cycle, he said), and argued that these symptoms often began in the nose. The result could be a full-on neurosis.

Fliess and his friend Sigmund Freud decided that one could treat the neurosis by huffing cocaine. Freud did so and it seemed to work. Voila! You could treat a genital problem — and the mental illness those problems create — by treating the nose. So Freud had Fliess operate on a woman named Emma Eckstein. Fliess removed Emma’s turbinate bone, but left a wad of gauze behind which created an infection. When the gauze was finally removed, she nearly bled to death. The episode left her disfigured for life.

Haller cautions against what he calls “presentism” when we look at such wrongheaded episodes. For example, while much of the Victorian era advice was laughably wrong, it was also progressive. An admonition that women should deny their husbands sex for up to eighteen months after the birth of a child was really a way for women to gain control of their own bodies.

We shouldn’t be too smug about our modern sexual sophistication, he said. Medical science may be getting better at figuring out what makes us tick, but it’s safe to say that some of the dogma we think is true now will later turn out to be false.

Brian Alexander is the author of the book “America Unzipped: In Search of Sex and Satisfaction,” now in paperback.

First published at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/30332998/ns/health-sexual_health/

News: Berlusconi Penis Restoration Controversy

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

Berlusconi Wants YOU!

The Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has found himself in hot water after academics and art-lovers have blasted him for personally initiating the restoration of two statues dating back to the 2nd century that were missing penises.

The reported cost to taxpayers was 70,000 Euros which has prompted criticism when the government only recently slashed millions of euros from Italy’s arts and heritage budget – at a time when parts of Pompeii are crumbling to dust. The two statues that were restored just happen to sit in Berlusconi’s Rome office. The 6ft high sculpture dates from AD175 and is technically on loan from a museum.

Before...................and.................New penis!

The Vactican Museum’s director Antonio Paolucci was reported saying ‘it’s a pity’ that restoration experts didn’t decline the project. Apparently, the newly adhered phalluses didn’t damage the statues, so why all the fuss? Wouldn’t it be odd if they’d have been originally created without genitalia? Whether the historians are prudish or concerned with being historically accurate, we’re happy that the statues have had their missing bits replaced after a very long wait.

The new penis has been fitted with a magnet so it can be removed if, in future, a more comprehensive restoration is carried out. It is the second time in two years that Bersluconi has been accused of tampering with works of art. In 2008 he ordered a painting that appeared directly behind him in press conferences should be changed so that a bare breast of the woman in the work could no longer be seen. Wouldn’t it have been easier to just move it?

Sources: Associated Press; Telegraph UK

Fun: The History of the Merkin

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

For those of you unenlightened in the ways of strange sexual accessories, the definition of the word “merkin” in Webster’s dictionary is “a woman’s pubic wig.”

The Bizarre History of the Merkin

Merkin

These soul patches for down-under are more prevalent than you might think. In today’s market, they come in all sizes and shapes and are commonly made of synthetic or animal hair. Generally, they are attached to the pubic area with non-toxic glue, much like false eyelashes. Merkins, however, are more than just pube wigs. They have a long and sordid history that illustrates the changing sexuality and turn-ons of mankind. More important than red lipstick or high heels, the history of the merkin illustrates the development of sexual practices and aesthetics. So, without further ado, here is 600 years of hairy glory.

The merkin was invented in China in the 1400’s. It was originally heart shaped and made of animal hair. Women did not wear them in this era. Instead, they were tied to the back of chairs and used as an artificial vagina to aid men in masturbation. This was the birth of the merkin and over the next 150 years, it would be adopted by other cultures and eventually make its way west.

The merkin came from humble beginnings, but by Elizabethan times it was widely used in Europe. Elizabethan theatre companies did not allow women to act in plays. Young boys always played female roles, which made staging love scenes difficult. Directors would spend hours planning elaborate costumes and makeup to make these lads look like authentic lasses, only to have their hard work ruined by an exposed penis. The solution to this problem came in the form of a merkin. These young men began wearing merkins to hide their genitalia from audiences during sex scenes, since nothing ruins the effect of femininity like a huge cock.

One hundred years later, in the 1600’s, pubic hair was all the rage. Nothing was sexier to a Renaissance man than a full bush. Unfortunately for prostitutes, pubic lice was not part of the fantasy. Ladies of the evening were forced to shave their pubic hair in order to de-louse themselves for clients. These clients were not happy. They demanded a fluffy muff. So prostitutes began wearing merkins to simulate the homey feel of hair. Samuel Pepys even mentioned it in a diary entry from 1667, saying,

“I did go to the Swan; and there sent for Jervas my old merkin-maker and he did bring me a merkin; but it was full of nits, so as I was troubled to see it and did send him to make it clean.”

Ewwwww

Prostitutes continued to wear merkins into the Victorian era. They were worn to hide signs of venereal disease, particularly syphilis, from their clients. There was little that could be done about their open sores and pustules, so these ladies simply covered them for aesthetic purposes. This practice was so widespread, that dirty humor of this era often included jokes about peeking under a whore’s merkin. Pubic wigs of this time were often made of horsehair. However, some lucky people owned merkins made of genuine human hair. In an unpleasant side note, this hair often came from cadavers that were illegally dug up by grave robbers.

By the 20th century, merkins made it across the Atlantic to North America. In the U.S., prior to World War II, it was illegal for a woman to strip completely naked. This law resulted in strippers making less money and customers leaving disappointed. Strippers started wearing merkins made of monkey hair to get around these laws. There are even cases of strippers being taken to court on charges of indecency. In these cases, owning a merkin proved to be an effective defense in court.

Today, merkins are making a come back. In the past few years, the entertainment industry has begun using merkins to make actors more comfortable while filming explicit sex scenes. These are often made of skin-tone fabric so they are easy to edit out. In addition, many directors have lamented the recent waxing trend, especially when filming a historical project. It seems that landing strips weren’t a commonly practiced form of lady-scaping in the 1960’s or the 1920’s or, as we now know, Victorian times. Recent merkin users in period films or television series include the lovely ladies of “Boardwalk Empire,” Sienna Miller in “Hippie Hippie Shake,” and Kate Winslet in “The Reader.” Even Hollywood’s leading men are merkin converts. Jake Gyllenhaal is rumored to have requested one for the love scenes in the upcoming movie “Love and Other Drugs.”

The Bacon Merkin

It seems merkins have officially made it into the mainstream. Recent trends in merkin-wear, as mentioned on many a late-night talk show, include the phenomenon known as “vajazzling.” Instead of hair, these new merkins are made of rhinestones and fastened onto skin like stickers. If you are so inclined to want a sparkly vagina, they come in many shapes from hearts to unicorns and are available on numerous adult websites. Should you choose to take part in this vaginal trend, congratulations, you’ll be the latest in a long line of privileged merkin wearers. Whether you decide to wear it fluffy or jeweled, let’s hope the merkin continues to prosper well beyond the 21st century, though by the looks of www.merkinworld.com it certainly will.

Fun: History’s Kinksters

Saturday, September 18th, 2010

Since it seems like every movie star, athlete and politician is just a sex scandal waiting to happen, you could almost think that it’s not possible to be a prominent person without also having an utterly depraved sex life behind the scenes.

And looking back at some of the great people in history… well, you’ll see…

1. ALBERT EINSTEIN

Time Magazine’s ‘Man of the Century’ is the most famous scientist in history, and perhaps you wouldn’t think that the emporer of all geekdom would be as popular with women as he was the US military but…when he wasn’t splicing atoms he was the biggest womaniser in science. Married twice (once to his cousin) he cheated on both women with at least ten others. In his defence Einstein did present his wives with a list of rules that included “expect neither intimacy nor fidelity”.

2. MOZART

Was a child prodigy that gave us some of the greatest music of all time but behind closed doors Mozart wasn’t always writing one of his 600 masterpieces. Letters to female cousins reveal a distinctly dirty side, one that he even shared in leters with his mother (though in a more joking tone). Yes the genius who brought us Piano Concerto #24 had a penchant for penning dirty lyrics which is best summed up from his party ballad “Lick My Ass”:

Lick my ass nicely,

lick it nice and clean,

nice and clean, lick my ass.

That’s a greasy desire,

nicely buttered,

like the licking of roast meat, my daily activity.

Three will lick more than two,

come on, just try it,

and lick, lick, lick.

Everybody lick his own ass himself.

3. JAMES JOYCE

The author of Ulysses is considered the height of modern literature. But in the days before sexting, iphones and friendface Joyce and his wife would send each other dirty letters. He often shared his erotic interest in his wife’s flatulence with lines like “It is wonderful to f*!@ a farting woman when every thrust drives one out of her”.
Hmmm.

4. JOAN CRAWFORD

This oscar winner and infamous mother struggled her entire life to control and maintain her perfect ‘hollywood’ image, but her off-screen shinanigans are as enduring as those eyebrows. Her film career started in the 1920’s when she danced naked in short arcade peep show films (which she tried in vain to cover up), but it was her penchant for rough ‘play’ and her indiscriminate taste for both men and women that really got people talking. Betty Davis once said that she had “slept with every star at MGM, of both sexes”. Naughty then, but today that’d probably get her a reality show on cable.

5. PERCY GRAINGER

You may not know much about the man whose contribution to classical music is still being felt today, but Grainger once earned the equivalent of $3 million a year. When he passed away he left his money to the University of Melbourne, but he also donated countless photos of himself, 83 whips and a pair of his own shorts – because he was a huge fan of BDSM. Percy had an entire room of his mansion covered in mirrors so he could watch his wife dominate him, taking pictures of the whole scene. He meticulously chronicled every session. Organised AND Kinky.

6. LAWRENCE OF ARABIA

When he wasn’t conquering Damascus or promoting independent Arab nations, Lawrence was pitching tents in the desert courtesy of a man named John Bruce. Lawrence would pay Bruce to whip him with a stick and then write up a detailed account of the beating. (more…)