Aphrodisiacs pp 139-172 | Cite as

The Scientific Approach to Sex and Aphrodisiacs

  • P. V. Taberner


It has been known since antiquity that castration causes a loss of male sexual characteristics and a decline in the sexual appetite. The Chinese were aware 4000 years ago that giving large doses of testicular extracts could overcome some of this loss. The Pen Tsao herbal also recommended the use of semen from young men for the treatment of sexual weakness, although it was believed that the brain was the ultimate source of the sperm. The great Greek physicians wrote knowledgeably about conditions such as mumps which could adversely effect the functioning of the male organs. Aristotle wrote that the semen was the formative or activating agent, whereas the female element was merely passive and required fertilization by the sperm, and it was believed that the right testicle yielded male offspring and the left female. Animal testicles, in dried or powdered form, were recommended as aphrodisiacs by several authorities in Chinese, Greek and Arabic medicine.


Sexual Activity Luteinizing Hormone Sexual Arousal Sexual Problem Scientific Approach 
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© Peter V. Taberner 1985

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  • P. V. Taberner

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