Ancient Egypt the period between BC and BC, give or take a dynasty or two was a very powerful place indeed. But its citizens were more progressive in their outlook than you might expect, especially when it came to matters of the flesh. According to Douglas J. Brewer and Emily Teeter , University of Chicago. Virginity was not a necessity for marriage; indeed, premarital sex, or any sex between unmarried people, was socially acceptable.
Prostitution was probably common and among the ranks of the courtesans were many married women whose husbands had left them, and who wandered about the country practising their profession. Despite their family backgrounds, paintings of the time show them standing nose to nose, which in Ancient Egypt was the equivalent of kissing. Papyrus 55, is otherwise known as the Turin Erotic Papyrus — and for good reason. Only fragments of the papyrus remain, but you can still see enough to understand why people were shocked by its discovery.
Another recipe for spermicide can be found in the Ebers Papyrus from around BC. It included seed wool, acacia, dates and honey, as well as the lactic acid a known spermicide produced by the acacia. According to one unnamed papyrus , one test involved a woman urinating on the seeds of wheat and barley over the course of a number of days. If the barley grows, it means a male child. If the wheat grows, it means a female child. If both do not grow, she will not bear at all. And the aforementioned Turin Erotic Papyrus included, among its imagery, an illustration of a woman sitting on a vase, presumably in order to pleasure herself.
This custom probably also goes some way to explaining the many early deaths and health problems in the royal family. Moreover in my lifetime there happened in that district this marvel, that is to say a he-goat had intercourse with a woman publicly, and this was so done that all men might have evidence of it.
According to some historians, Ancient Egyptians also learned to flip crocodiles onto their backs to prevent them attacking before having sex with them. According to myths, the god Atum brought himself into existence from the watery abyss prior to Creation. When the children left him in order to explore their new world, Atum wept and his tears became the first humans. MORE: Why do people visit a dominatrix? These men explain the appeal.
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