The things one can find in the New Listings section of the University of Pennsylvania's Online Books Page can shock, amaze, and disgust. Here is just a tiny sample:
Roman History Lesson of the Day: Nero the Pervert
Title: Dio's Rome, Volume V., Books 61-76 (A.D. 54-211) (Translated in 1906)
Author: Cassius Dio
- "Now Nero called Sporus Sabina not merely on account of the fact that by reason of resemblance to her he had been made a eunuch, but because the boy like the mistress had been solemnly contracted to him in Greece, with Tigillinus to give the bride away, as the law ordained.... After that Nero took to himself two bedfellows, Pythagoras to treat as a man and Sporus as a woman. The latter, in addition to other forms of address, was termed lady, queen, and mistress.
Yet why should one wonder at this, seeing that this monarch would fasten naked boys and girls to poles, and then putting on the hide of a wild beast would approach them and satisfy his brutal lust under the appearance of devouring parts of their bodies? Such were the indecencies of Nero.
When he received the senators he wore a short flowered tunic with muslin collar, for he had already begun to transgress precedent in wearing ungirt tunics in public...."
Female Beautification: Ooo Ooo That Smell...
Title: Natural Magick (1658)
Author: Giambattista della Porta
Excerpt from: The Ninth Book of Natural Magick, "How to Adorn Women, and Make them Beautiful."
- Chapter XXVIII
"How to correct the ill scent of the Armpits."
"The stink of the Armholes makes some women very hateful. Especially those that are fat and fleshy. To cure this, we may use such kind of experiments. The Ancients, against the stink of armpits, used liquid Allome with Myrrh to anoint them. Or the Secrets and Armholes were strewed with the dry leaves of Myrtles in powder. The roots of Artichokes smeared on, does not only cure the ill scent of armpits, but of the whole body also. But Zenocrates promises by experiment, that the faultiness of the armpits will pass forth by Urine.... So in some days we shall correct the strong smell of those parts. But it will be done more effectually thus. Pound Litharge of Gold or Silver, and boil it in Vinegar. And if you wash those parts well with it, you shall keep them a long time sweet. And it is a remedy, that there is none better."
Note: If you think this excerpt is bad, then you should not read the next chapter, Chapter XXIX.
(Originally Posted: 9/25/2006 @ 5:09PM)
Labels: best of the web