18th century sex manual sells for £550
Judging by that picture, really hairy women?Aristotle’s Compleat Master-Piece was written around 1684 and was a sex manual and guide to midwifery. In part, it sets out “to show at what age young men and virgins are capable of the marriage bed, which, because so many desire before they attend to it, it will be likewise necessary to show the causes of their impetuous desires.”
I guess that explains the sexual revolution.The copy that was sold was printed in the 1760s, around the same time that it was banned in England. The ban was not lifted until the 1960s.
Shocking stuff, I can see why it was banned petunia“There are also interesting bits about the 17th century notion that it was considered beneficial for a woman to enjoy sexual intercourse in order to conceive. It suggests that both men and women should enjoy sex. That’s interesting because much later on, when they realised that a woman didn’t have to climax in order to conceive, the idea of a woman enjoying sex was considered far less important.”
Interesting that it was attributed to Aristotle, presumably for the added respectability the great philosopher's name would have given it, or to make it seem more scientific as opposed to the chance for some bathroom 'reading.'
I'm surprised it sold for only £550 but then I wouldn't be an expert on the antique book-world in terms of sales. Are 18th sex manuals too common after all or just not that interesting to the punters?