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The Joy of Sexus : Lust, Love, & Longing in the Ancient World
by Vicki Leon


Overview -

In her previous books, Vicki Leon put readers in the sandals of now obsolete laborers, ranging from funeral clowns to armpit pluckers, and untangled the twisted threads of superstition and science in antiquity. Now, in this book of astonishing true tales of love and sex in long-ago Greece, Rome, and other cultures around the Mediterranean, she opens the doors to shadowy rooms and parts the curtains of decorum.  Read more...


 
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More About The Joy of Sexus by Vicki Leon
 
 
 
Overview

In her previous books, Vicki Leon put readers in the sandals of now obsolete laborers, ranging from funeral clowns to armpit pluckers, and untangled the twisted threads of superstition and science in antiquity. Now, in this book of astonishing true tales of love and sex in long-ago Greece, Rome, and other cultures around the Mediterranean, she opens the doors to shadowy rooms and parts the curtains of decorum.

Leon goes far beyond what we think we know about sex in ancient times, taking readers on a randy tour of aphrodisiacs and "anti"-aphrodisiacs, contraception, nymphomania, bisexuality, cross-dressing, and gender-bending. She explains citizens' fear of hermaphrodites, investigates the stinging price paid for adultery despite the ease of divorce, introduces readers to a surprising array of saucy pornographers, and even describes the eco-friendly dildos used by libidinous ancients. Love also gets its due, with true tales of the lifelong bonds between military men, history's first cougar and her devoted relationship with Julius Caesar, and the deification of lovers."

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780802719973
  • ISBN-10: 080271997X
  • Publisher: Walker & Co
  • Publish Date: January 2013
  • Page Count: 302
  • Dimensions: 1 x 7 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.88 pounds


Related Categories

Books > History > Ancient - General
Books > History > Social History

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2012-10-22
  • Reviewer: Staff

In concise entries divided into nine readable sections, León (Working IX to V) delivers a snappy ride into the stunning, sometimes barbaric, and always entertaining sexuality of the ancient world. From aphrodisiacs and diaphanous silks to abduction and the very upsetting practice of infibulation, she minces no words exposing the truth behind ancient sex practices. Infamous emperors with a penchant for young boys riddle the pages, but so too do unsung tales of intimacy and affection. For example, the epitaph of a young girl written by her husband, a construction worker: “To the eternal memory of Blandinia... You who read this, go bathe in the baths of Apollo, as I used to do with my wife. I wish I still could.” Not limited to personal histories, the book casts a wide net on ancient sexuality, detailing the extravagant and the plebeian alike. Papyrus pornography, orgiastic festivals, and “breadstick dildo” abound. León’s descriptions are plentiful and detailed, and a vibrant, playful tone runs throughout—a Roman politician is introduced as a “utinous army officer, political turncoat, gang leader, cross-dresser, pirate hostage, and zestful incest aficionado.” This is a fun, enlightening trip into the ancient world not covered in high school textbooks. B&w images. Agent: David Forrer, Inkwell Management. (Jan.)

 
BAM Customer Reviews