Main  Contacts  
Table of contents
GENERAL PREFACE
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-1.1
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-1.2
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-1.3
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-1.4
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-1.5
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-1.6
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-2.1
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-2.2
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-2.3
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-2.4
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-2.5
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-3
THE EVOLUTION OF MODESTY-4
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-1.1
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-1.2
FOOTNOTES
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-2.1
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-2.2
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-2.3
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-3.1
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-3.2
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-3.3
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-3.4
THE PHENOMENA OF SEXUAL PERIODICITY-3.5
FOOTNOTES
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-1.1
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-1.2
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-1.3
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-1.4
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-1.5
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-1.6
FOOTNOTES
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-2.1
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-2.2
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-2.3
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-2.4
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-3.1
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-3.2
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-3.3
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-3.4
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-3.5
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-3.6
AUTO-EROTISM: A STUDY OF THE SPONTANEOUS MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-3.7
FOOTNOTES
APPENDIX A-1.1
APPENDIX A-1.2
APPENDIX B-1.1
APPENDIX B-1.2
APPENDIX C-1.1
APPENDIX C-1.2
INDEX OF AUTHORS

Nearly everywhere all over the world at a primitive stage of thought, and 

even to some extent in the highest civilization, the sight of the sexual 

organs or of the sexual act, the image or even the names of the sexual 

parts of either man or woman, are believed to have a curiously potent 

influence, sometimes beneficent, but quite as often maleficent. The two 

kinds of influence may even be combined, and Riedel, quoted by Ploss and 

Bartels,[38] states that the Ambon islanders carve a schematic 

representation of the vulva on their fruit trees, in part to promote the 

productiveness of the trees, and in part to scare any unauthorized person 

who might be tempted to steal the fruit. The precautions prescribed as 

regards coitus at Loango[39] are evidently associated with religious 

fears. In Ceylon, again (as a medical correspondent there informs me), 

where the penis is worshipped and held sacred, a native never allows it to 

be seen, except under compulsion, by a doctor, and even a wife must 

neither see it nor touch it nor ask for coitus, though she must grant as 

much as the husband desires. All savage and barbarous peoples who have 

attained any high degree of ceremonialism have included the functions not 

only of sex, but also of excretion, more or less stringently within the 

bounds of that ceremonialism.[40] It is only necessary to refer to the 

Jewish ritual books of the Old Testament, to Hesiod, and to the customs 

prevalent among Mohammedan peoples. Modesty in eating, also, has its roots 

by no means only in the fear of causing disgust, but very largely in this 

kind of ritual, and Crawley has shown how numerous and frequent among 

primitive peoples are the religious implications of eating and 

drinking.[41] So profound is this dread of the sacred mystery of sex, and 

so widespread is the ritual based upon it, that some have imagined that 

here alone we may find the complete explanation of modesty, and Salomon 

Reinach declares that "at the origin of the emotion of modesty lies a 

taboo."[42] 

 

Durkheim ("La Prohibition de l'Inceste," _L'Annee Sociologique_, 

1898, p. 50), arguing that whatever sense of repugnance women may 

inspire must necessarily reach the highest point around the womb, 

which is hence subjected to the most stringent taboo, 

incidentally suggests that here is an origin of modesty. "The 

sexual organs must be veiled at an early period, to prevent the 

dangerous effluvia which they give off from reaching the 

environment. The veil is often a method of intercepting magic 

action. Once constituted, the practice would be maintained and 

transformed." 

 

It was doubtless as a secondary and derived significance that the 

veil became, as Reinach ("Le Voile de l'Oblation," op. cit., pp. 

299-311) shows it was, alike among the Romans and in the Catholic 

Church, the sign of consecration to the gods. 

 

At an early stage of culture, again, menstruation is regarded as a process 

of purification, a dangerous expulsion of vitiated humors. Hence the term 

_katharsis_ applied to it by the Greeks. Hence also the mediaeval view of 

women: "_Mulier speciosa templum aedificatum super cloacam_," said 

Boethius. The sacro-pubic region in women, because it includes the source 

of menstruation, thus becomes a specially heightened seat of taboo. 

According to the Mosiac law (Leviticus, Chapter XX, v. 18), if a man 

uncovered a menstruating woman, both were to be cut off. 

 


Page 1 from 6: [1]  2   3   4   5   6   Forward