The female orgasm was a hush hush topic for hundreds of thousands of years. It is still an elusive beast that few men are capable of grasping, but that might be due to the simple fact that it was rarely talked about. The modern humans or Homo sapiens, have existed for around 200,000 years and yet the first time the female orgasm was discussed by an actual woman was in the early 1000s A.D. By a nun of all people.
Hildegard von Bingen was born in 1098 in Germany. She was noted for experiencing visions throughout most of her life and at age eight, was sent to the monastery at Mount St Disibode to start her education and became a nun at age 18. She is accomplished in… well everything. She wrote nearly 70 poems, 72 songs, a play set to music and nine books whose topics range from medicine, ethics, the human body, herbology, commentary on the Gospels and spirituality. “Her writings bring science, art, and religion together. She is deeply involved in all three, and looks to each for insights that will enrich her understanding of the others” (1). She traveled to give sermons throughout Europe and was often asked to write her sermons down, which is historically unheard of for a woman in that time period. Her advice was sought after and her surviving works include more than a hundred letters to emperors and popes, bishops, nuns, and nobility. Many persons of all classes wrote to her, asking for advice, and one biographer calls her “the Dear Abby of the twelfth century” (1). Mid-life, she dedicated ten years to write, in detail, of her visions. She commented on their significance and worked hard to translate their meanings. Even Pope Eugenius III sent a commission to ask after her work and gave her support and guidance.
An in-depth observation of her work leads to an, “…extensive analysis of controversial subjects such as sexuality, both feminine and masculine. In a sense, she was the first sexologist in history, and her first observation was that pleasured involved two figures, giving priority to female pleasure” (2).
“When a woman is making love with a man, a sense of heat in her brain, which brings with it sensual delight, communicates the taste of that delight during the act and summons forth the emission of the man’s seed. And when the seed has fallen into its place, that vehement heat descending from her brain draws the seed to itself and holds it, and soon the woman’s sexual organs contract, and all the parts that are ready to open up during the time of menstruation now close, in the same way as a strong man can hold something enclosed in his fist” (2)
On the male genitalia she writes:
“The wind that is in their loins is more fiery than windy. It has two tabernacles under its command into which it blows as a pair of bellows. These tabernacles surround the stem of all of the man’s powers, like small buildings put up next to a tower for its defense. For that reason there are two, so that they may more strongly surround the stem, make it firm and hold it and, further, so that they may capture more strongly and aptly the aforementioned wind and attract and emit it in an even manner, like two pairs of bellows blowing jointly into a fire. Thus when they erect the stem in its power, they hold it strongly. In this way the stem blossoms through its offspring.”
Of the female genitalia she draws:
She definitely goes down in history as a creative, revolutionary and intelligent mind. #getitgirl
- Keifer, James E. “Hildegard of Bingen, Visionary.” Biographical Sketches. Web. 24 April 2017. <http://justus.anglican.org/resources/bio/247.html>.
- Martinez, Alonso, “The Nun Who Explained Female Pleasure and Became the World’s First Sexologist.” CulturaColectiva. 29 September 2016. Web. 24 April 2017. <http://culturacolectiva.com/the-nun-who-explained-female-pleasure-and-became-the-worlds-first-sexologist/>.
FEATURE IMAGE SOURCE: Wikipedia Commons See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons