Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Western History of the Clitoris:

A bunch of dudes claim they were the ones who first discovered the clitoris. This seems rather silly. What girl hasn’t found her magic little pearl by her second birthday? Oh wait, silly me! I forgot, such things are merely mythical until some old white guy gives it a scientific name.

First, this Italian guy, Realdo Colombo found the clitoris in the 16th century. He published a book called De re anatomica, where he described it as the "seat of woman's delight". Columbo also decided that he was some sort of genius deserving of honor and glory. He was reported to have said, "Since no one has discerned these projections and their workings, if it is permissible to give names to things discovered by me, it should be called "The love or sweetness of Venus." WOW! He may have been a bit full of himself, but at least he had a healthy sense of reverence.

Another dude, Gabriel Falloppio argued that Columbo was a Lying Sack of Poo (his words, not mine). Fallopio said that HE was the first to discover the clitoris. The two huffed and puffed and called each other names until their untimely and suspicious deaths. They were found together in an stinky alley behind one of Venice’s popular brothels (*).

Later, a 17th century anatomist, Caspar Bartholin, said that both Columbo and Fallopio were full of malarkey. He said that the clitoris had been well known to medical science since the 2nd century. Caspar sounds like he might be a little more on track. I’m fairly certain that humans, particularly the female ones, have known about the blessed pearl for a very long time.

We’ll discuss women’s sexual anthropology in the near future. Until then, go forth and celebrate 2005, The Year of Cunniligus.

(*) Yeah, I totally made that part up!


At 12:48 PM, Blogger Mr 5.25 said...

I know I've celebrated the year of cunnilingus as much as possible this year.

I wonder what next year's celebration will be?

At 1:29 PM, Blogger Blazngfyre said...

Isn't it just like a man to take credit for something WE already knew about?

At 3:42 PM, Blogger Erin said...

Great illustration! Yep, nothing's worse than male "experts" on female sexuality. At least Freud had the partial good sense to admit he felt overwhelmed by it (good sense minus the whole penis envy thing. I'm perfectly glad to have "the pearl" instead).

At 7:57 PM, Anonymous Tom said...

As I understand the story, the clitoris was a by-product of NASA developmental research in the 1960s.

At 12:09 PM, Blogger shoe girl said...

Great entry! I am all for The Year of Cunnilingus, just as long as it can be every year, every day forever!

Love your site!


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