6 "Ancient" Sex Toys
Sex toys and other auto erotic devices are believed to have been around as early as tens of thousands of years ago. The colorful evolution of what our ancestors used for enhancing their sexual experiences reflects an immense variety and diversity in their sexual exploits. Here are a number of ancient sex toys that played a particularly significant role in their time...
- The World’s Oldest Sex Toy
- The Olisbos: an Ancient Dildo
- Burmese Bells/Ben-Wa Balls
- Cock Rings
- Penis Extenders
- Granville’s Hammer: the Prehistoric Vibrator
It is reported that the oldest sex toy ever discovered had other uses beyond that of just sex. Discovered in a cave in Germany, the fragments were pieced back together and studied at the University of Tubingen. Dating back an estimated 30,000 years, the siltstone phallus is believed to have been used for striking against flints to ignite fires!
Rather than viewing self-satisfaction as a vice, the Ancient Greeks saw masturbation as a safety valve for stress or excess sexual desire, and there are plenty of literary references to support its use by men and, to a lesser degree, women. Moreover, the olisbos was also widely known to be used by lesbian women whom the Greeks called ‘tribads’.
Dildo, the term we now use to describe the olisbos, has possible roots from the Latin word ‘dilatare’ (to open wide), or from the Italian word, diletto (to delight). Used for oral, anal and vaginal intercourse, the olisbos is supposed to have been the model for dildos created after it. According to the book ‘Sex in History’, the ‘imitation penis’ in Greek times appeared to have been made either of wood or padded leather, and had to be liberally anointed with olive oil before commencing play.
In early China, before the Middle Ages set in, there was a whole lot of brewing going on. Though the Chinese weren’t the first to use aphrodisiacs, they were certainly well known for their broad and highly scientific approach to stimulating desire by using herbs and medicine. But that’s not all they were known for...
Known also by the Japanese variation ‘rin-no-tama’ (meaning ‘tinkling balls’), the use of Chinese ‘Burmese Bells’ has been documented as far back as the Ming Dynasty. Men were believed to wear bunches of small balls that tinkled like little bells, supposedly by cutting open the skin of the penis and inserting them. Doing so would increase the appearance of the penis, but others believed the practice would also prevent homosexual acts from taking place.
Women used Burmese Bells too. They were inserted into the vagina and worn either during sex or for solitary self-satisfaction. At the most minuscule movement of the legs or hips, wearers of these devices experienced an erotic and uniquely arousing sensation. The use of this early sex toy came into fashion in the Western World as early as the eighteenth century.
These sex aids have been used to help men maintain erections for many centuries. The penis ring is simply placed on the member once a full erection has been achieved, the idea behind it being that it’ll stay that way. While poorer folk had to settle for cheaper materials for their cock rings, the upper classes could enjoy an ivory or jade rendition of this ancient toy, some being wealthy enough to afford ornate carving in the materials - believed to stimulate a woman’s clitoris during intercourse. The device was worn by fitting it around the base of the penis, held in place by a band passing between the legs and up round the waist.
Extenders became popularly used in Asia around (1700BP), the use of which can found mentioned In the Kama Sutra and its companion, The Hindu Art of Love. According to factoidz.com, these ‘extras’ were suggested for men needing a longer penis (to satisfy women with large vaginas [yonis]), or to enable impotent men to please their wives (placed over the flaccid penis) – they were used much like a modern-day strap-on. The Kama Sutra suggests wood, leather, ivory, gold, silver, copper and even buffalo horn as good natural substances from which to carve them – and there are hundreds surviving into modern times.
In 1880, British doctor Joseph Mortimer Granville patented the first electromechanical vibrator, and (as it was as big as a piece of furniture), it eventually became a permanent fixture in his office. When female patients suspected of suffering from Hysteria - a condition believed to cause anxiety, irritability, sexual fantasies, and large amounts of vaginal lubrication - they came to see the good doctor.
The ‘Percussor’ - this giant sized vibrator’s official title - was used to give these women orgasms which, at the time, was thought to be the appropriate cure for their state of hysteria. The invention of the machine was supposedly to give doctors some respite from the exhausting handiwork that was required by the profession to cure/alleviate women of their problem!
From the Ice Age - to Bronze Age - to modern day … when it comes to sex, we don’t exactly know what was going through our prehistoric ancestors’ minds, but looking over all the various aids and devices that have been discovered over time, we can at least be sure they played a very important part in exploring their sexuality!