This section is from the book "Aphrodisiacs And Anti-Aphrodisiacs", by John Davenport. Also available from Amazon: Love Stimulants, Aphrodisiacs and Anti-aphrodisiacs.
THE reproductive powers of Nature were regarded by the nations of remote antiquity with an awe and reverence so great, as to form an object of worship, under a symbol, of all others the most significant, - the Phallus; and thus was founded a religion, of which the traces exist to this day, not in Asia only, but even in Europe itself.
That scarcely any notices of this worship should appear in modern works, except in the erudite pages of a few antiquarians may be accounted for by considering the difference of opinion between the ancients and the moderns as to what constitutes - modesty; the former being unable to see any moral turpitude in actions they regarded as the designs of nature, while the latter, by their over-strained notions of delicacy, render themselves, in some degree at least, obnoxious to the charge that, in proportion as manners becomes corrupt, language becomes more guarded, - modesty, when banished from the heart, taking refuge on the lips.
To supply, to some extent, this lacuna in our popular literature has been the object of the present work, in which, it is hoped, may be found much curious and interesting physiological information, interspersed with recherche and festivous anecdotes.
The text is illustrated by a few plates, drawn from antiquarian sources.