Condoms Before the Days They Were Rubbers!

posted by Madame Bubby

When I was in sixth grade (I didn’t go to a middle school or a junior high), the tougher boys were joking about rubbers. I did not make the connection to condoms until high school, climaxing in the time when, believe it or not, my dad gave me one to put in my wallet. He thought I needed one because I was hanging out with some girls (little did he or, most significantly, I know I was their gay friend, and one of the girls, nicknamed “Inch," was a lesbian).

I digress. Condoms weren’t always rubber. Before the invention of vulcanized rubber in the 19th century, condoms were made usually of some kind of linen smeared with chemicals or, ew, animal tissue or bladder. What’s interesting is that since ancient times they were used as both a means of birth control and a protection against STDs. (Ironically, usually birth control and/or abortion was the province of the woman, who was blamed for issues is in this area, even though, by the Middle Ages, the established view was that the woman was merely the physical receptacle of the life-giving, soul-containing male sperm.)

Some interesting facts about pre and early modern condoms and condom usage:

There’s a legend that the King Minos of Crete, subject to so many curses, used a goat’s bladder as a female condom to protect his partners because he suffered from a strange affliction; his semen was filled with snakes and scorpions.

Those short loincloths Greek and Roman guys wore (mostly those of the slave and laborer class), that in the sword and sandal movies showed off hot, muscular legs, often consisted of little more than a covering for the penis. If someone in a higher class wore one of these “lower class” outfits, some have speculated they may have served as form of condom.
 

Ancient Greek man in short loincloth
Ancient Greek man in short loincloth, Source: Pinterest

Sexual norms changed during the Middle Ages with the rise of Christian theocracies, and the emphasis on sex and procreation tended to put condoms under the radar, so to speak, and we also lost some knowledge of their substance and use during the ancient world. Some writings by Muslims and Jews, who during this period in some areas comprised the majority of physicians, mentioned soaking a cloth in onion juice or other perceived spermicides.

The syphilis outbreak that began among French troops in 1494 prompted an Italian guy named Gabriele Falloppio (from whence we get the name fallopian tube) to pretty much invent the first item we now can define as a condom. He invented a linen sheath sized to cover the glans of the penis, tied to it with a little ribbon, smeared with spermicide. He claimed to have saved the lives of 1100 sailors with the device. Sailors. And with that word, one I think can pretty much imply that these guys weren’t always going after the clichéd wenches.
 

Gabriele Falloppio
Gabriele Falloppio, Source: Sciencemuseum.org

During the Renaissance, condoms were also made of animal intestines or bladders. By the 18th century, they were available in all shapes and sizes; one could buy them especially at the ubiquitous barbershops, which weren’t just places for haircuts. The barbers performed various surgeries, dental work, and especially bloodletting.
 

Retro Durex condom
Condom made of animal intestine, Source: mirror.uk

During the above periods, the upper, and later the burgeoning middle classes, were the ones who used condoms. The lower classes couldn’t afford them, and they also lacked education on STDs.

Now the omnipresent and mostly all-powerful Catholic Church during this time wasn’t exactly keen on the use of condoms as birth control, of course, but it was yet to make its views on the subject official in the Pope’s encyclical Humanae Vitae with the advent of the sexual revolution of the 1960s.

And in the early 19th century, after the invention of the rubber condom which increased usage and convenience considerably, the notorious Comstock Act pretty much made life miserable for anyone who wanted to use any form of contraceptive, much less educate oneself on the issue.
 

Retro Durex condom
Retro Durex condom, Source: sexinfo.soc.ucsb.edu/article/history-condom

The deadly AIDS epidemic of course made the condom a matter of life and death, with the holy haters decrying what condoms had always been used for, saving lives, in favor of reviving the scapegoating of anyone with STDs.

By the way: there was no “Earl of Condom.” The etymology of the word is indeed unknown!

Source: mostly Wikipedia’s article on the History of Condoms, combined with some of my own knowledge of gender/sexuality history

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Biblical Beards, Olive Oil, and Sex

Biblical Beards, Olive Oil, and Sex

 

Psalm 133:1-2
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that runs down upon the beard, Aaron’s beard, that runs down to the hem of his garments.

Why am I quoting a psalm from the Bible? We are just released a new porn compilation, Love a Man with a Beard 3, on DVD and streaming, and it's pretty obvious that the passage above refers to a beard. Not just any beard, but the beard of the first high priest of Israel. But something is happening on the beard. Oil is running down it, profusely. Why?


The Talmud makes the connection between these this passage and another passage in the Bible, Leviticus 8: 10, 12. Psalm 133 makes concrete heaven’s response to the actions of Moses and Aaron as they fulfilled their roles as servants of God.

 

Moses and Aaron were brothers who stood together as one unified presence before God, especially as Moses anointed his brother Aaron for the service of the tabernacle (which contained the famous Ark of the Covenant); together they blessed the people (Leviticus 9:23).

 

In their culture, blessings were physical: fertility (the end result of sexual prowess in Biblical culture) and wealth, as well as spiritual/emotional ones such as peace and intimacy.


What I find interesting is the amount of oil depicted in the passage. It flows profusely. It drenches not just the beard, but the entire body. The obvious symbolism here is actually more abstract (the oil is a concrete expression of God's blessings of peace and unity) than literal. But oil pressed from the olive tree, a staple of Biblical life, used for practically every bodily function, not just as a food additive.


In another monotheistic religion, Islam, according to the Quran and the Ahadith (sayings and actions of the Prophet Muhammad) there are multiple references to olive oil.

 

The Prophet Muhammad is said to have advised his followers to apply olive oil to their bodies and to “use olive oil as a food and ointment for it comes from a blessed tree” (Tirmidi). In fact, for centuries, olive oil was first used on the body, not in it. Olive oil has been used to maintain the suppleness of skin, to heal abrasions, to soften the hair, to strengthen nails, to cure the effects of alcohol (such as a hangover), and to relieve aching muscles.

And there's a definite sexual connection between oil and semen as well.

Olive oil offers a few significant benefits as a lubricant for sexual activity. It’s not water soluble, and as a result, it provides long-lasting lubrication in small amounts. A few drops of olive oil can last for hours. It isn’t very greasy, and most people have a bottle of olive oil in their kitchens.


Recently, there's been research about the connection of extra virgin oil increasing semen production!


In Biblical Hebrew, the word shemen (שמן) is usually translated as "oil," as in the essential extract pressed out of a plant or fruit (such as the olive). Could perhaps the essential extract of a man be his seed (זרע zera ) or semen?: [There is] treasure to be desired and שמן [oil] in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man spendeth it up [through lust]. (Proverbs 21:20)

Whether the one who literally spreads his seed rather than saving it for making babies, resulting in cum dripping on a beard or any body hair, is really foolish is of course these days a matter of opinion.

 

But in the combination of the images of oil/semen with a beard, one can see a “hyperimage” of virility and strength. Samson's physical strength and sexual prowess was contained inside his luxuriant long hair. Aaron's beard, in fact, his entire body, is dripping outside with the sacred fluid of life, which in sexual intimacy connects, at a most primal level, all people as “brothers” and “sisters.”

 
 Check out our three available Love a Man with a Beard compilations and keep an eye out for the fourth, coming soon!
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All Those Little Buggers in One Cumshot

All Those Little Buggers in One Cumshot

 

The crowd historian Elias Canetti claims in Crowds and Power that invisible crowds have always existed.

 

The most numerous, according to him, are those microscopic entities like bacteria and sperm.

 

Crowds of them that can't be counted, there are so many.

 

Think numbers stretching into infinity...

There are some average numbers, though, based on some serious scientific observation.

 

Hate to disappoint you, guys, but human males don't even close to the top ten in the average number of sperm per ejaculation in mammals.


According to The Book of Lists 2, here are the top ten:

Swine: 45,000,000,000
Jackass: 14,000,000,000
Horse: 8,000,000,000
Dairy Cattle: 7,000,000,000
Zebu (humped ox): 5,098,200,000

Beef Cattle: 4,000,000,000
Eurasian Buffalo: 3,978,000,000
Sheep: 3,000,000,000
Goat: 1,755,000,000
Dog: 1,500,000,000
 

b2ap3_thumbnail_pigpenis.jpg

 The above numbers are in the billions! What I find interesting that humans often call each other swine and jackass to insult each other.

 

(Except those in certain parts of the gay community who are proud of being and behaving as   various types of sex “pigs.”)

 

Perhaps these numbers would make you think twice, if quantity is your guide to value judgments, about using those terms as insults. In fact, I'm surprised pigs and asses haven't taken over the world, based on their sperm counts.

(By the way, the median sperm count for human males is about 255,000,000 per ejaculation, according to Wikipedia's article on semen analysis. Again, sorry, guys.)

And guys, try to think quality, not quantity.
 

 

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