Yeah, some of these two minutes’ worth of historical sex tidbits were pretty laughable to me as a modern-ish lady (avocados? really?!) — but the part at the end where laws come in? That really shocked me.
FACT CHECK TIME!
40 B.C. — Cleopatra would allegedly fill a hollow gourd with bees creating a primitive vibrator.
- Nobody knows if it’s true or not, but the story is out there, backed up by a few, ahem, interesting sources: “The Long Strange History of Sex Toys” and “The Bizarre History of the Vibrator.”
13th century — Aztec families would not allow their virgin daughters outside during avocado season because they believed the fruit to be too powerful an aphrodisiac.
- Again, no solid “proof,” but the concept is definitely out there among other sources: “Avocado: Ancient Food of the Future” and “The Aphrodisiac Encyclopaedia.”
15th century — Leonardo da Vinci studied the bodies of hanged men to disprove Aristotle’s assertion that an erect penis was caused by an influx of air.
16th century France — Men accused of being impotent were forced to prove their virility in front of witnesses in court. Failure was cause for divorce.
18th century — famous seducer Giacomo Casanova allegedly gave his female companions half of a lemon rind to use as a diaphragm.
- According to Mother Jones, Casanova attests to this in his memoir.
19th century — Minister Sylvester Graham introduced a bland, spiceless cracker as an alternative to spicy foods, which were believed to increase the libido.
- The Atlantic says it is so.
1920s — Christian missionaries in the South Pacific promoted the “English-American” sex position to replace local variations.
- Wikipedia supports this common belief (among other sources).
Late 1930s — Lysol was marketed as a feminine hygiene product.
Prior to 1962, oral sex was a felony in most U.S. states and could be punished with a lengthy prison term and hard labor.