Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Possibly the world's most popular inclination, the impulse to export your suffering to another seems to be near-universal. Not confined to any race, sex, or age category, the impulse to cause pain appears to well up from deep inside human beings. This is mysterious, because no one seems to enjoy pain when it is inflicted on them. Go figure.

Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:27 am

The Erotic Literature

The French literature of the eighteenth century is brand-marked pornography! At no other time in the history of the world, even under the Caesars, had literature been made a tool of vice in such a systematic fashion as in the ancien régime. Of course, the representation of sexual passion was an old story in French literature, and was even present in the numerous fabliaux of the middle ages; but it was not until the eighteenth century that the healthily coarse naturalism and naiveness of these older forms of erotic stories were replaced with pictures of sensuality, whose studied premeditation served as a malignant stimulus to an enervated society. The eighteenth century produced the greater part of the pornographic literature existing today; and in the number of individual erotic works more than all the other centuries combined. The lion's share in the production of pornography falls in the period from 1770 to 1800 when only eroticism could move the public. These books made the worship of flesh their main theme. They recognized nothing but lascivious experiences and all the forms of sexual pleasure. The bordello was a paradise, the prostitute far nobler than the most faithful wife. "What age has so dirtied itself with obscene books as this great century?" asked Janin, "that even men like Voltaire, Rousseau, Diderot, Montesquieu and Mirabeau fashioned their works accenting to the taste of the time." Shortly before and during the Revolution machlosophy appears to have suppressed all nobler motives. The bookstores were literally pornographic libraries. Mercier declared in 1796: "Only obscene books are displayed, especially those whose title-page and frontispiece mock and jeer at modesty and good taste. Everywhere these monstrosities are sold in baskets and pushcarts near the bridges, the doors of the theatres and the open streets. The poison is not expensive: ten sous a book." The principal market was the notorious Palais Royal, of which we shall later speak. This center of all vice was also the principal market for the obscene writings that flooded Paris. One found these works even in the toilette rooms of Parisian ladies. Bernard has an interesting tale about this which also serves to show the enormous spread of the writings of Marquis de Sade: "A respectable lady both in age and position had written out a list of books she intended to take to the country for herself and children and asked me to procure them for her. On the list was Justine or The Misfortunes of Virtue, which she thought was a pedagogical work!" That such writings were plentiful in bordellos was not strange and, indeed, such is the case today. Napoleon I ordered all such books found in the possession of prostitutes to be seized and destroyed; only one example of each to be saved for the National Library where they were still preserved in a special corner of the building.

De Sade forever talked of obscene books. Juliette and Clairwil ransacked the dwelling of a Carmelite monk, Claude, and found a select library of pornography. Juliette said: "You have no idea what obscene books and pictures we found there!" First they note the Porter of Chartreux, "more a comic than a dirty book, which the author, nevertheless, is supposed to have written on his death bed." Second, the Academy of Ladies, well conceived but poorly carried out. Third, the Education of Laura, a wretched work which had too little vice, murders and gouts crûels for Juliette. Finally, The Philosopher Therese, the enchanting book of Marquis d'Argens with pictures by Caylus, the only one of the four books that combined vice and atheism. And the monk had, of course, a number of the "wretched brochures that we found in all the cafés and bordellos."

The Marquis de Sade, indeed, intended his works to serve as models for all later obscene works.

We present as an orientation a short survey of the most important French erotica of the eighteenth century. For a complete list the student is referred to Gay's Bibliography of Erotica (six volumes).

The Ovid of the Eighteenth Century was Pierre Joseph Bernard (1708-1775). In 1761 appeared his l'Art d’aimer, a verse imitation of Ovid's Art at Love. Nevertheless it caused great excitement and was present in the toilette table of every respectable lady. The verses were bound together with rose-bands and were appropriately about billing and cooing. But these latter were very passionate and the plainness of speech compared with Ovid. Bernard enfolded in his poem a whole course of refined sexual life, in which he recommended strongly the reading of piquant works.

The younger Crébillon (Claude Prosper Jolyot de Crébillon, 1707-1777) can be called the real creator of lascivious writings in the eighteenth century. His writings were characterized by an "elegant cynicism and graceful vice." The most famous was The Sofa, a Moral Tale, whose title indicates the content of the work. Of a similar kind were The Loves of Zeo Kinizal, King of Cofirons (1746), which described the love adventures of Louis XV; The Night and The Moment (1755), Oh! What a Story! (1751), The Sins of the Heart and the Spirit (1796), etc. In Crébillon's novels the tendency is apparent: to prettify and justify the commonest sensuality with a philosophic cover.

Jean François Marmontel (1723-1799) created the type of anti-clerical novel in The Incas, and had unmistakable influence on the representation of the clergy in later erotic novels.

Sidelights on the History of M. Dirrag and Mlle. Eràdicée, in addition to the case of Girard (Dirrag) and Cadière (Eràdicée), portrayed the sexual debaucheries of the Jesuits. De Sade, as we have seen, ascribed this work to Marquis d'Argens and the pictures to Count Caylus.

André Robert Andréa de Nerciat (1739-1800) was for two years librarian in Cassel and was later confidant of Queen Charlotte at Naples. He wrote the notorious Félicia and a sequel Monrose or a Libertine by Fate.

That pornography at that time was fashionable and in good taste was shown most strikingly by the circumstance that the greatest figures of the age did not disdain the earning of this cheap fame. We have already mentioned that savant of the classical times, Caylus. But such men as Mirabeau and Diderot did not shrink from sullying their literary work by the production of obscene stories. Mirabeau especially was often quoted by de Sade and there is no doubt that Mirabeau’s Education of Laura served as the model for Philosophy in the Boudoir. In My Conversion Mirabeau described the experiences of a male prostitute, who had respectable ladies, nuns, etc., pay for his services. A third obscene book of Mirabeau’s was Erotica Biblion (1783).

In Denis Diderot's Jacques the Fatalist were presented obscene stories that put him below Crébillon's class. His famous The Sister which, "when first published, was thought to have been written by a nun, dealt with the torture to which a nun was put by the perverse lubricity of her abbess, for whom, it was said, Diderot found a model in the Abbess of Chelles, a daughter of the Regent, and thus a member of a family which for several generations showed a marked tendency to inversion." (Havelock Ellis in Sexual Inversion.) His Indiscreet Joys was also erotic and contained a number of paradoxical assertions and paronomasias in the sexual field; this feature probably gave occasion to de Sade's preference for Diderot.

Choderlos de Laclos was the Petronius of "a less literary and more degenerate epoch than that of the real Petronius." His much quoted Dangerous Liaisons described the corruption of the aristocracy, of which the author, the friend of the notorious Philippe Egalité, has first-hand knowledge.

Less cynical in his description of the debaucheries of the nobility was J. B. Louvet de Couvray who drew the type of the "chevalier" in his Loves of Chevalier de Faublas. In Faublas' rich love-adventures the hero (borrowed from the artificial effeminization of the real Chevalier d’Eon) played a rôle also found at the end of Juliette where Noirceuil, dressed as a woman, married a man.

Next to the Marquis de Sade the most famous erotic writer of the Revolutionary period was the productive Restif (Rétif) de la Bretonne. We shall later evaluate Rétif de la Bretonne as one of the first critics of de Sade. We are at present interested in him only as a contemporary of de Sade and in his influence upon him. It was plainly Rétif, whom de Sade referred to unfavorably in his novels: "R… floods the public and needs a printing press next to his bed. By good fortune they groan alone under his frightful products; a dull decrepit style, nauseous adventures in the worst society; no other merit but a great verbosity for which only the store-keepers will be thankful." May not professional jealousy have played a part in his judgment? We will later see that Rétif did not think much better of de Sade. It may also be that the highborn Marquis thought himself far removed from the lowborn Rétif.

Indeed Rétif de la Bretonne (1734-1806) mainly occupied himself with the representation of the moral corruption in the lower classes, thus supplementing the work of Marquis de Sade, with whom he had otherwise much in common. Eulenburg declares: "An infinitely closer figure to de Sade than Rousseau is that Rousseau du ruisseau Rétif de la Bretonne. He was lashed by a powerful sensuality and driven into a kind of exhibitionism by the idolatry of the ego. Therefore he was unequalled in understanding how to analyze the origin, essence and power of sexual life and to devote the ego to a greatly refined worship." There we have the germs of a literary de Sade but far weaker, more passive and less passionate. Were Rétif more active and impulsive, of a less contemplative nature, and were the means and milieu of the célébré Marquis given to the poor peasant's son from youth onward, then perhaps a second de Sade would have resulted, who would have been literally equal in power and in sensitiveness of description. Not aimlessly does Rétif praise above all this unusual sensitiveness, this "sensibility, sometimes delicate, sometimes horrible, cruel and wicked." We add to the characteristics of this remarkable writer that he was a passionate connoisseur of women and, unsatisfied with his very numerous mistresses, would run after every pretty girl he met on the street, and would not rest until he had made her acquaintance. He was personally of the greatest uncleanliness. He writes in the Contemporaries: "Since 1773 till today, December 6, 1796, I have brought no new clothes. I have no underwear. An old blue coat is my daily garment." Rétif hence loved cleanliness—in women. He continually spoke thereof, gave detailed information in this connection in his Pornography, and approved the spread of this virtue among the Parisian prostitutes.

Despite his own patient observations he did not hesitate to avail himself of the adventures of others. Count Alexander of Tilly told in his Memoirs that Rétif de la Bretonne came to him with the request that he tell him his erotic adventures so that he could put them in a book. Very important was the relation of Rétif to Mathieu François Pidanzat de Mairobert (1727- 1797), the famous author of The English Spy and the editor of Secret Memoirs of Bachaumont. The latter not only had his works printed at the secret press of Rétif but also collaborated with him in many works. One valuable treatise that appeared from there was Rétif's Pornography on the sixteen classes of prostitutes and panders. Also the Contemporaries, the Owl and the Paternal Malediction were enriched by Pidanzat de Mairobert.

The greatest work of Rétif was undoubtedly Nights of Paris, an inexhaustible thesaurus for the moral life in the Revolutionary period, the only representation of its kind of the moral physiognomy of Paris at the end of the eighteenth century, the true Nocturnal Tableaux of Paris, whose content rendered necessary a twenty years' work. "Every morning," said Rétif, "I wrote down what I had seen in the night." The result was eight voluminous volumes from which unfortunately space does not permit us to quote.

In Monsieur Nicolas (Paris, 1794-1797, 16 vols.) Rétif de la Bretonne told the story of his life more truthfully than the authors of such similar works as Faublas, Clarissa and Heloise. Of especial interest is the thirteenth volume, My Calendar, in which Rétif, day by day, wrote down all the women, whose acquaintance he had made and whom he had seduced and made pregnant.

His Contemporaries is a collection of tales that are founded on actual experiences. The heroes of these adventures were supposed to have authorized the author to use their real names. They are essentially tales of the moral life of the people.

The Farmer and the Perverted Farmer's Wife or the Dangers of the City are the liaisons dangereuses of the lower classes, which preach the sad truth that virtue through constant intercourse with vice necessarily is destroyed.

Fanchette's Feet is the story of a young modist from the Rue Saint-Denis, whose small foot enchanted Rétif, for he was an outspoken foot-fetichist. He had a fanatic passion for pretty women's feet and shoes. Franchette's feet are indeed the heroes of the story.

"Her foot, her small foot, that turns so many heads was shod with a pink pump, so beautifully made and as worthy of enclosing such a beautiful foot that my eyes once fixed on that charming foot could not turn themselves away. Beautiful foot! I said very softly, you don't walk on Persian or Turkish carpets, a beautiful carriage does not guarantee you the fatigue of carrying that superb body, that masterpiece of the graces, but you have an eternal throne in my heart."

He really did see "Franchette" one day in the Rue Saint-Denis, and her feet, "her wonderfully small feet," inspired him to write the story.

The work of Rétif that sounded most like those of the Marquis de Sade was Innocent Saxancour or the Divorced Woman, supposedly the story of his unhappily married daughter, Agnes. Rétif in this work "crossed the boundaries of the boldest cynicism" and the author himself said that one will find in the work "all things that are called atrocities.” The unfortunate wife after the marriage had to submit to all the moods of a degenerate roué from her husband; she suffered the most unbelievable infamies and horrors of her passionate tyrant.

We will refer to some other works of his in a later, more pertinent section. In conclusion to our short survey, which stresses only the characteristic works, we wish to remark on two very well known obscene poems of the eighteenth century. The first is Fourtromania, a Lascivious Poem far Connoisseurs. It contained six stanzas, each of 600 verses. The "foutroamania" is the good luck of the gods, that drives away the boredom. But it also makes men happy. The author led the dance of these fortunates with Mlle. Dubois, an actress of the Comédie Française. Then follow the ladies Aroux and Clarion. At the end of the first stanza appear the duchesses and ladies of the court, who satisfy themselves with their lackies. Finally the inexhaustible libido of old Polignac de Paulien is described.

The second stanza starts with the description of the charms of a young girl, who succumbs to the passions of a young roué. Inserted is a poem Father Chrysostome against sexual debaucheries in the convents. Later a man suffering from satyriasis breaks into the convent. Then follows an attack on tribadism and pederasty. The old Due d'Elboeuf was one of the first who introduced the sect of pederasts to France. The conclusion is an excursion on syphilis.

The third stanza is almost entirely devoted to the rôle of syphilis in love. First the high perfection in the healing of this grave ailment is praised; then the "syphilitic heroes of love" are extolled. Archbishop of Lyons, Sire de Montazet, etc., are named together with the Duchesse de Mazarin. After highly indecent expressions on the Duke of Orleans and Madame de Montesson the liaison between the Duchess of Orleans and de I'Aigle as well as de MeIfort is disclosed, the last two receiving syphilis from the duchess. Finally, high praise for Aretino, the discoverer of the “plastic positions."

The fourth stanza is devoted to the praise of the bordellos. The famous procuresses and madames are presented: Paris, Cardier, Rockingston, Montigny, d’Hericourt and Gourdan. Description of the orgies in these infamous resorts. "Bed and Board" must then follow, hence German women are more susceptible to "foutromania." The author curses Italy where he lost health and wealth.

In the fifth stanza the syphilophobias are encouraged. Not all women have syphilis. Montesquieu had been in the fire as had been Rousseau and Marmontel. Great praise for Dorat, the poète foutromane. The Hollanders who love only money. Description of the immoral cardinals. Spinola sleeps at Palestrina's, Albani at Altieri's, Bernis at Saint-Croix, Borghese is… It's too bad that the "Dames de France," the aunts of Louis XVI, live in celibacy.

Agyroni, the author of a popular work on the therapy of syphilis, is the hero of the sixth stanza. This charlatan had indeed cured the author of his complaint. Numerous medical details as in Robé’s poem on syphilis. For a conclusion, “foutromania” is again praised as the soul of the universe.

The second poem, Parapilla, is a translation of the Italian original Il Cazzo (Phallus), the favorite word of Pope Benedict XIV. When a courtier pointed to the obscenity of the word, he replied: "Cazzo, cazzo! I will repeat it until it no longer sounds dirty." The French poem consists of five stanzas whose content, in short, is: Rodric receives from Heaven a certain instrument that makes all women happy. Firstly in Florence, the famous Donna Capponi. Then it thrives in a nunnery in the hands of Lucrezia, the daughter of Alexander VI. The debaucheries of this pope in Rome are then described and the poem closes with an obscene conversation between him and his daughter.

We could only touch on the most important erotic works of the French literature of the eighteenth century. Their influence on morals was tremendous and the Marquis de Sade was sensible of this influence. In his Ideas on the Novel he showed that he had recognized the significance of pornography. He said: "The epicureanism of Ninon de Lenclos, Marion de Lorme, Marquise de Sévigné and de Lafare, Chaulieu, St. Evremond, this entire society, tired of mere cytheric love, turned to Buffon, held that only bodily passions were worthwhile in love, and soon changed the style in novels. The writers found it simpler to amuse and corrupt these women than to serve and glorify them. They created incidents, descriptions and conversations more in the spirit of the time and developed its cynicism and immorality in a pleasant, easy and at times philosophic style."
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:27 am


The French art of the eighteenth century was also a true mirror of the time. Architecture, painting, theatre and dance all served in excitation of the senses. The famous "rococo" was nothing less than a picture of harmony. Rococoism followed the inspirations of the artistically excited senses in the preference for detailed ornamentation, in intricate interlaced lines, in the representation of passionate scenes and delicately conceived "nudités." A splendid description of the graphic arts and especially of architecture was given by Georg Brandes: "What was sought after in architecture under Louis XIV was the impressive. Heavily interlaced and cumbersome details were the general style. The petites maisons of the time were a prerequisite of the man of the world. Every part of the room was designed to excite the mind. Indeed all the rooms smelled of passionate perfume…”

The eighteenth century was expressed even more clearly in its painting than in its architecture. The desire for something new "to delight the blasé appetites" gave the artists a cunning talent for inventiveness. Fragonard, Lancret, the painter of fêtes galantes, disdained the simple naive nudity of the goddesses of Lebrun and Nicholas Mignard. Their baigneuses and bergères are no longer mythological figures but Parisian prostitutes who are displayed in voluptuous positions in bath or bed. These pleasant naiads and coquettish shepherdesses with bare breasts and more or less revealing dress were women of the time, ladies, "very much in vogue at the little parties at Trianon and Lucrinnes."

If books worked so much for the glorification of sexual passions, then their graphic representation must have been a thousand times more effective. "The realism of the painter shows itself in actions and in words, in books and in songs; it is bound to exert a bold influence on the youth by overexciting the sexual senses." And the Marquis de Sade, who told in his novels all the possible means of increasing sexual pleasure, had Saint Fond cry out after a wild orgy: "Oh! A painter should be here now so that he might hand down to posterity this passionate and divine picture!"

Hence it could not fail but happen that after the piquant Nudités of Fragonard and Lancret all sorts of obscene pictures would spread enormously. It was not unusual for mistresses to have painted for their lovers pictures or casts of themselves in the nude. Well known is the story of O'Morphi, mistress of Louis XV, inmate of the Deer Park, and for whom Louis XV had to thank the famous adventurer Casanova in this wise. Casanova, in one of his many love-adventures in Paris, had made the acquaintance of a Flemish actress, O'Morphi, who had a young sister of surpassing beauty, whose charms Casanova enthusiastically described. He had a painting made of this splendid body in the "divine manner" for six louisdors. The posture in which she was painted was "entrancing." "She lay on her belly, resting her arm and bosom on a cushion and held her head turned about as if lying three-fourths on her back. The artist has painted her bottom part with such great talent and truth that it is impossible to imagine anything more beautiful." A friend of Casanova was very eager to procure a copy of this painting. The painter exhibited in Versailles this copy which Saint-Quentin found so beautiful that be rushed off with it to the king. "His most Christian majesty, a great connoisseur in this field, wanted to convince himself with his own eyes whether the painter had made a true copy, and whether the original was as beautiful as the copy." Thus Casanova lost his mistress to Louis XV, who, after a payment of one thousand louisdors to her sister, had her brought to his Deer Park, where after a year she came down with child. The infant was immediately spirited away lest the queen be disturbed.

Casanova later showed this famous picture to a French nun in Aix, with whom he had an affair. The nun, too, had herself painted for Casanova, in the same obscene posture.

Especially before the Revolution the most immoral pictures were distributed in and about the bordellos without hindrance from the police. From 1790 to 1793 the most shameful caricatures of Louis XVI, Marie Antoinette, etc., were distributed to the customers in the bordellos. One can truly say that these places contributed greatly to the political breakdown of France. In the Reign of Terror such pictures were to be found not alone in the bordellos but in public shops and galleries where the boldest pictures imaginable of the most strange and obscene pictures hung in open display.

That erotica were richly illustrated with obscene pictures is understood. The novels of Marquis de Sade were no exception to the rule. We shall return later to this subject.

La Chronique Scandaleuse reported a remarkable hiding place for obscene pictures, "a new kind of obscenity, an epoch-making discovery." This was the vestes de petits-soupers. According to the fashion of that time coats or jackets were buttoned to the neck; hence the vests or waistcoats could not be seen. But during the orgies the gay young bloods would unbutton their jackets and show their vests decorated with paintings and stickers, which showed with true fidelity the very orgies themselves!

There was still another kind of obscene pictures we must discuss. For de Sade defecation was also an object of pleasure and passion. The faeces were delicious and were swallowed by men and women as a great delicacy. One can hardly believe it! Even the act of defecation was presented before the eyes of the Parisians. Reichart tells that poems, essays and pictures, all describing, praising and extolling this act were offered on every corner to passersby. Even respectable persons bought these pamphlets and treated the whole matter as a rich joke.

Sculpture also tried to extol the purely sensual in its limited fashion. Virgin nudity was profaned by the expression of sensual love. The women were almost always represented as petites filles, lascivious courtesans, wanton shop-girls, etc.

André Grétry, the chief representative of French music of the eighteenth century, who loved "filles et fillettes" all the time, showed in his musical works no noble passion but only lust.

That Marquis de Sade was a true product of the age was shown by the fact that he also was bitten by the mania of the age; "thespian madness, mimomania." He not only wrote many plays but also directed some amateur productions. The passion for the theater, the "mimomania," ruled in France during the entire century with a force scarcely comprehensible to us today. Throughout the entire country amateur societies sprung up.

There was a theatre in every castle, in every noble house. "It is an unbelievable mania," said Bachaumont, "even every pimp wants to have a stage and troupe in his home!" Theatrical madness also ran in the circle of the clergy. Louis XV, of course, by Pompadour's influence, had the plays presented in the Court.

The drama, especially in the last decade before the Revolution, had taken on an ever freer character. We have already mentioned Lanyon's convent plays. Shortly before and during the Revolution there came a real flood of obscene comedies against the king and church. The number of these so-called Pièces révolutionnaires is very great. The most extreme are by Guigoud Pigale (The Triumph of Public Reason), Léonard Bourdon (The Grave of Imposters of the Temple of the Revolutionary Truth, dedicated to the Pope), Sylvain Maréchal (The Last Judgments of the King), Desbarreaux (The Potentates Crushed by the Mountain and the Reason or the Deportation of the Kings of Europe). In the last-named play the princes of Europe quarrel about a piece of land. The Empress Catherine says to the Pope; "Have you swallowed your piece, Holy Father?" He answers: "Don't worry, you'll have the first try." Thereupon he boxes the ears of the King of Prussia who retaliates by stepping on his corns, and so the merry conversation proceeds with familiarities and obscenities.

The Marquis de Sade had a further model in the notorious Théâre gaillard for his obscene comedies which he had his fellow-prisoners play in Bicêtre and in Charenton. The obscenity went further than mere words. In April, 1791, there existed in the Palais Royal a public theatre where a so-called savage and his mate, both nude, before the eyes of a crowded audience of both sexes, went through the act of coition. Coitus as a play! That must have pleased the numerous voyeurs of the city, who appear in de Sade's novels. La Mettrie had already said: "The pleasure that other people's pleasure afford us" in his Art of Joy. The magistrate finally had both actors summoned before him. It was discovered that the Savage was a rascal from the suburb St. Antoine and that the female was a common whore who earned her money in this wise from the curious spectators.

The actresses, opera singers, chorus and ballet girls formed a very desirable number of the prostitutes, whom we shall treat of later. The foyers of the theatres were the "favorite hunting grounds for paramour, pander and prostitute."
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:28 am


Clothing! That can make women seem more desirable by showing just slight hints of charms and arousing the passions of both sexes. That is the rôle which Marquis de Sade had Minister Saint Fond impart to fashion. Saint Fond also recommended to Juliette that she should show herself half naked in the streets to the public if she wanted to remove her last vestige of modesty.

Here, too, de Sade let reality speak. The advice of Saint Fond was actually followed. "On a quiet day of the year V of the Revolution two women paraded up and down the Champs-Elysées, completely nude and covered only with a thin gauze. Many women also showed themselves with wholly base bosoms. The sight was not unusual."

The blaséness was shown in remarkable conceits. Young men and women tried to better nature and borrowed the white hair of age. The de Goncourts excellently describe the incessant changes in fashion in their bizarre fancies, their delicate concealment and unveilment, the gigantic friseurs of the women, their "make-up," beauty spots and patches, etc. Fashion paid homage to the age.

The nearer one comes to the time of the Revolution the more does nudity appear in fashion. The style of gauze, the preference for gossamer becomes more apparent. The clothing of the "Goddesses of Reason" becomes ever more transparent. Clothing retreated to the center to show its opposite semicircles, bosom and legs. Ankle bracelets and golden rings on the toes were the fashion. Terpsichore, in the Greek fashion, reigned in the public gardens. A journalist who attended the opening of the Parisian Tivoli, declared that the goddesses appeared in such light and transparent dress that nothing was left to the imagination. "The women in the audience are dressed as outrageously as possible. The indecency of their behavior is impossible to describe. In the last great ball in the opera house Madame Tallien appeared garbed only with jewels in the necessary place." These costumes, whose wearers were called merveilleuses, had been introduced in Paris by Therese Cabarries, the mistress of Tallien, after she thus publicly showed herself in the Reign of Terror in Bordeaux. The male merveilleuses were called incroyables and clothed themselves according to the ideal of offensiveness. For during the Revolution the highest ideal was not beauty but power and strength of muscles. Don Juan was changed to Hercules.

The perverse sexual impulses also found expression in fashion. The wide spread paedicatio, also practiced between man and woman, brought the notable fashion of the so-called "Cul de Paris." It spread to such an extent that even the prostitutes delighted in this form of passion, since it was the "style." Under Louis XVI the seat in women's dress was so extended that they resembled "Venus Hottentote."

On the other hand, tribadism was a cause of rather strange costumes. The tribades with male inclinations had remarkably increased during the Reign of Terror. The virago on the streets was a daily incident. Her costume differed little from the man's. Since her hair was cut close and her voice was strident, it took a good look to make sure of the sex.
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:29 am

Bordellos and Secret Pornologic Clubs

Marquis de Sade had made his studies for his two notorious novels Justine and Juliette in Paris. Here he, himself, experienced and conceived the greater part of the contents. Parisian incidents and experiences had permanently fructified his phantasy. And the models for the descriptions of individuals in his works are easy to discover. This will be shown in surprising fashion in the discussions of prostitution and sexual life in Paris. Even today Paris justifies the remark of Montesquieu in his Persian Letters: "It is the most sensual city in the world where the fanciest pleasures are invented." De Sade's description of the great bordello with its ingenious contrivances and settings refers almost entirely to Parisian bordellos. Most of his heroines are Parisian prostitutes. It is therefore fitting that we should cost consider these conditions.

In Juliette, (I, 87) the Marquis de Sade describes the bordello of Duvergier in a suburb of Paris. This madame had a bordello for both men and women. In a private house, surrounded by a pretty garden, Madame Duvergier had her own cook, delicious wine and charming maidens who received ten lounsdors for a tête-à-tête. The house had the requisite back entrance for safeguarding of propriety. The furniture was of the best; the boudoirs most fitting for their purposes. Duvergier, protected by the police, could celebrate more atrocities than her fellow-madames. The bordello supplied princes, nobles, and rich citizens with its wares.

When Juliette organized a house in Paris, six pimpesses (maquerelles) were sufficient to provide for girls from Paris and the provinces. Clairwil introduced Juliette, into the house of the "Society of the Friends of Crime," which lay in the heart of Paris but was discreetly concealed. It had splendid drawing-rooms, boudoirs, cabinets d’aisance and harems or, as de Sade called them, seraglios in which both sexes disported themselves in wild orgies. The girls were, for the most part, torn from their parents, under the protection of the police. Here the respectable world was assisted by hangmen, jailers, floggers and flagellants (Juliette III, 33 ff.).

Alcide Bonneau believes that the Deer Park served de Sade as a pattern for his descriptions of bordellos. Nonetheless de Sade had made a thorough study of Parisian bordellos and had found many incidents to his liking. He wrote (Juliette I, 333) that in many bordellos in Paris turkey-cocks were much esteemed for lustful purposes in zoophilia. At any rate it cannot be denied that de Sade took his descriptions of Parisian bordellos from actual experiences. Authentic reports will conclusively confirm this. The most notorious bordellos of Paris, the secret pornologic clubs and the affairs of the prostitutes will be described in later sections.

The most famous, most sought after, most mentioned Parisian bordello in the Eighteenth Century was the House of Madame Gourdan on Rue des Deux Portes; under the reign of Louis XV and Louis XVI it served the court and nobility. This bordello was distinguished by the genteel attempt to satisfy every desire of male and female visitors. A short description of the place is appended.

1. The "Seraglio." This was a great salon with "plastrons de corps-de-garde," i.e., twelve prostitutes who had always to be in a position such as to satisfy any whim of the visitor. There the price and details of their pleasure were agreed upon. Even the minute details were stipulated. Pidanzat de Mairobert at this description in The English Spy cries out: "Just imagine the horrors and infamies that took place in such a house!"

There is no doubt that de Sade expressed such a great preference for the word "seraglio" from this salon of Madame Gourdan. De Sade also discussed the understandings on the price of love in his novels and was particularly concerned with the analysis of the details for preparing an orgy.

2. The "Piscine." This was the bathroom of the bordello, where the girls, fresh from the provinces, were sent to the madame. There they were bathed, powdered and perfumed. Among the many essences and toilet waters was the famous Eau de Pucelle. This was a strong astringent with which Madame Gourdan renewed "lost beauties" and restored that "which can be lost only once." Marquis de Sade often mentioned this remarkable miracle which will be discussed later under the section:

Cosmetics and Aphrodisiacs. Also in the piscine was the Essence a l’usage des monstres, which made impotent persons potent again by its strong odor and excited them to passionate cruelty. The specific of Doctor Guilbert de Préval (we shall later say more of this charlatan) was truly a magic charm. For it served at one blow as a prevention, diagnosis and cure of syphilis! Truly a sexual panacea!

3. The "Cabinet de Toilette." Here the students of the Venus-seminar received their second lessons.

4. The "Salle de Bal." From this classroom a secret passageway led into the home of a merchant on Rue Saint Sauveur. Through his house the prelates and preachers (gens à simarre) as well as respectable ladies could enter the bordello. In this secret room were clothing of all kinds as well as "objects of delicacy." Here the clergy could turn into laymen, officials into soldiers, ladies into cooks. Here the respectable ladies permitted unflinchingly the powerful embraces of a coarse peasant, whom her trusty madame had chosen to satisfy her indomitable temperament. On the other hand the peasant believed her to be one of his own kind and was little embarrassed in expression and action.

5. The "Infermerie." This was the room for the impotent. The attendants tried to incite and arouse drooping spirits by all possible means. The light fell from above; on the walls were passionate pictures; in the corners stood similar statues; on the table lay obscene books. In the alcove was a bed of black silk; its top and sides consisted of plate-glass so that it mirrored and reflected all the objects and actions of this pretty boudoir. Perfumed thorny switches served for flagellation. Dragées- pastilles in all colors were offered for food; "only one was needed to make one feel like a new man." They were called Pastilles à la Richelieu because he had often given them to women as aphrodisiacs. Women were also taken care of in this Infermerie. There were present so-called pommes d'amour, little balls of stone, to satisfy them. Mairobert could not discover if "the chemists had analyzed this stone which had a decided chemical reaction and was often made use of by the Chinese." The consolateur was an ingenious instrument "found in convents" as a substitute for a man. Madame Gourdan did a wholesale business with this artificial phallus. In her possession were numberless letters from abbesses and simple nuns asking her to send them a consoler. Great, black rings, so-called aides, served the men as artificial irritations in women. Many of these rings were covered with hard studs for increasing the pleasure. Finally there was a whole arsenal of redingotes d’Angleterre, which are today called condoms, and which, as Mairobert has it, "protect from the virus of love but dull the pleasure." Madame de Sevigné called it "protector of pain and despoiler of pleasure" in one of her letters.

6. The "Chambre de la Question." This was a private room in which one could see through a secret peephole all that took place. A contrivance for voyeurs.

7. The "Salon des Vulcan." In it was a fauteuil of a strange form. The moment one sat in it, one was snuck a heavy blow. The person sank backwards with outstretched legs, which were fastened to the sides. This chair was a discovery of Sire de Fronsac, son of the Duke of Richelieu, and served him as a faithful aid to seduction. The Salon des Vulcan was so situated that the crying and wailing could not be heard outside the room. This mechanization of vice will also be found in de Sade's writings.

Gourdan was the leading madame for the respectable world. She could satisfy all desires and was extremely wealthy. In Villiers le Bel she had a private country house in the forest to which she seldom went but often sent her sick and pregnant girls. The villa also served as a useful hiding place for especially delicate debaucheries. It was ironically called by the peasants the convent.

There were two kinds of madames in Paris; first, the seducers of virgins, second, purveyors of already deflowered maidens. Only the first were punished by being forced to ride backwards on an ass. Gourdan belonged to the second class and took care that her novices were officially prostituted by one of her assistants. But the head-madames had also to make regular reports of the physical health of their girls. We shall later give such a report.

In the House of Gourdan the mistresses were educated for the respectable world. The later Countess Du Barry had to thank her resplendent career to her early stay at the bordello of Madame Gourdan. Many aristocrats also sought new pleasures here. A respectable lady, Madame d'Oppy, was discovered in 1776 by the police at Gourdan's where she was officiating as a prostitute.

On November 14, 1773, Madame Gourdan delivered a funeral oration on her deceased colleague, Justine Paris, which was printed in The English Spy and is so full of sadism that we append a short summary of it. The idea for this funeral oration was conceived by Prince Conti, one of the most notorious adventurers of the ancien régime. It was read at an orgy in Conti's home. The "Funeral Oration of the very proud and very powerful Lady, Madame Justine Paris, Grand Priestess of Cytherea, Paphos, Amathonte, etc., given November 14, 1773, by Madame Gourdan, fellow Priestess, in presence of all the nymphs of Paris" has the characteristic motto:

Syphilis, O my God!
Has put me under the sod!

On their dying-bed Justine's parents preach to her that immorality is the only redemption for the future. "Don't count the days you haven't consecrated to pleasure!" Justine immediately transposed this advice into action, which one finds on almost every page in the novels of Marquis de Sade, and dedicated herself to the advice of her parents. She then entered a Parisian bordello, where she made great advances in the service of Venus and became famous through an affair with the Turkish ambassador. Trips to England, Spain and Germany taught her to be phlegmatic with the Englishmen, serious with the Spaniards, and ardent (emportée) with the Germans. She finally came to Italy and in Rome was the "Queen of the World and the centre of Paillardise." She traveled through all Italy, honored and coveted by nobles and clergy. Unfortunately she was attacked from time to time by her hereditary syphilis but that did not prevent her at her return to Paris from celebrating new orgies, winning success and great honor as the proprietor of a bordello. She ended in a hospital.

Could this funeral oration have been unknown to Marquis de Sade? It is hardly probable; it is almost certain that Madame Paris was the prototype for Juliette who was celebrated throughout all Italy, in Florence, Rome and Naples as the queen of the world and as the ideal prostitute.

Casanova, the famous confidant, whose historic trustworthiness is attested by Barthold, told in his Confessions of a visit in 1750 to the bordello of Paris, the so-called HôteI du Roule, and presented a living picture of the life and action in a Parisian bordello of the eighteenth century, which may here serve as an addition to the more systematic description of the house of Gourdan.

"The HôteI du Roule was famous in Paris, but was as yet unknown to me. The proprietress has furnished it elegantly and has from twelve to fourteen splendid girls. One finds there all the desirable comforts: good table, good beds, cleanliness; her cook was excellent, her wine splendid.

"She is called Madame Paris, undoubtedly a pseudonym that pleases all.

"Protected by the police, she was far enough from Paris to be certain that the visitors to her place were persons well above the middle-class.

"The inside was well policed by servants, and all pleasures had a fixed tariff.

"One paid six francs for breakfast with a nymph, twelve for a dinner and double that for a night."

Here we pause for a moment and declare that the above description of Casanova tallies almost word for word with the description of Duvergier's in de Sade's Juliette. The house of Duvergier was just like that of Justine Paris.

Casanova died in 1798; his memoirs reaching only to 1773 remained in manuscript form long after his death and were not made public until 1822. Juliette appeared early in 1797. The only conclusion to be drawn is that both men have described independently the same bordello. To return to the description of Casanova.

"We enter a fiacre and Zatu says to the driver: 'To Chaillot.'

"After half an hour journey he stops before a gate on which is a sign, HôteI du Roule.

"The gate was closed. A Swiss with a great beard stepped out from a side-door and seriously sized us up with his eyes. He found us respectable, opened the gate and we walked in.

"A one-eyed woman of about fifty years, but still showing traces of former beauty, greeted us and asked if we would like to dine.

"Upon my assent she led us into a very pretty salon, in which we saw fourteen young maidens who were all pretty and dressed in muslin.

"At our entrance they arose and made a charming bow.

"All were about the same age, some blonde and some brunette.

"Every taste could be satisfied here.

"We spoke a word to all and made our choice.

"The two chosen let loose a joyous cry, embraced us with a passion that was virginal, and we went to the garden expecting that we would be called to dinner.

"This garden was extensive and so arranged that it could serve the joys of love.

"Madame Paris said: 'Go, sirs, and enjoy the fresh air and reassure yourselves; my house is a temple of peace and of health.'

"During the sweetest occupation we were called to eat.

"We were very well served; the meal had aroused new longing in us, but with the clock in her hand the one-eyed attendant entered to inform us that our party was ended.

"Pleasure was here measured by the hour."

Finally Casanova and his friend were induced to spend the night in the bordello.

This home was mainly visited by the clergy. Madame Richard had started her career with the systematic seduction of young father confessors. This specialty gave her the idea of opening a bordello exclusively for the clergy. It flourished. Madame Richard became the purveyor of young girls for a "missionary home, for prelates and other clergymen." We have previously described an erotic scene in this house.

A roué in Venice always brought with him two Negresses in the bordello of Juliette because the contrast between white and black girls afforded him special satisfaction (Juliette VI, 152). Negroes also played a rôle in the anthropophagic dinner in Venice (Juliette VI, 204). In the castle of Cardoville at Grenoble, where Justine was led as a sacrifice to the passions of this roué, two Negroes are active accomplices at this orgy (Justine IV, 331). In the third volume of Aline and Valcourt there is an obscene picture on page 200 showing three naked women and four Negresses swinging heavy clubs at one another.

The Negroes are no invention of de Sade. Long before 1790 there existed a Negro bordello in Paris. This was in the house of a Mlle. Isabeau, first on Rue Neuve de Montmorency, later on Rue Xaintonge. In this bordello Negresses, mestizos, and mulattos were at hand. There were no set prices; the inmates were sold "like slaves in a caravan."

Fraxi believes that the taste for black women belongs exclusively to the French. At any rate one finds today in many bordellos in Paris and the provinces permanent examples of these black beauties. Hagen in his Sexual Osphresiology makes many references to this preference for Negresses by the French; he ascribes it to the charm of their odor.

For descriptions of the other great bordellos of Paris we must refer to the famous work of Rétif de la Bretonne, Pornography and to the Bordellos of Paris. Yet we would like to mention the house in Faubourg Saint-Antoine, where, according to Retif, the Duke of Orleans, Prince d'Artois, enjoyed the wildest debaucheries and atrocities, where those bestialities were encountered which the Marquis de Sade described in his exécrable romance, Justine.

Manifestly even this great number of bordellos could not satisfy the desires of the ancien régime. Passion must be made private. Hence the respectable gentlemen and rich roués of that time had in the so-called petites maisons, their own private bordello in miniature. Every one had his little house with some mistresses. That was the high tone in young and old. Casanova became acquainted in Paris with the eighty year old Chevalier d'Arzigny, the oldest of the petits maîtres, who powdered and perfumed himself, scented his heavy wig, penciled his eyebrows, etc. Even this old worldling was devoted to his mistress, who managed his little house, in which he always ate at evening in the society of her friends, who were all young and lovable and gave up every company for his.

The Marquis de Sade also had his petite maison in Saint-Roch in 1772.

What Marquis de Sade described in the "Society of the Friends of Crime," and what we shall later delineate as the mysterium of vice in the novels of this author, actually existed. There were in Paris secret clubs whose members united for the practical study of debauchery. They had their temple with a statue of Priapus, of Sappho and other symbols of sexual passion; they had also their own special speech and symbols.

The Island of Happiness or The Order of Happiness or The Society of Hermaphrodites was the notorious love-club. This secret society borrowed all descriptions, ceremonies and other forms of seafaring life, addressing their songs and prayers to holy Nicolaus. Maître, Patron, Chef d'escadre, Viceadmiral were the names for the individual grades of cavalier, and cavalieresses, who bore an anchor on their heart and had to swear eternal fidelity and silence if they wished to be borne to the island of fortune. In their more than gallant meetings the most obscene conversations were held. A very zealous member of this obscene club was Moët, the author of the Code of Cytherea and translator of the English work Lucina sine Concubitu. He wrote for his club the famous Anthropophily or the Secrets and Mysteries of the Order Devoted to the Pleasure of Mankind. It contained the rules and statutes of the organization, its vocabulary and poems. I chose a few expressions from the dictionary: "chaloupe, petite fille; flute, grosse femme; frégate, femme; gabari, fille on femme bien faite; goudron, fard; hisser une frégate, enlever une femme; mât, les corps; mer, amour; sondes, les doigts." The purpose of the club is given in the following verse:

Let us sail to the Island of Happiness
In our good ship of hermaphrodites.
We are sure to find complete success
In our search for strange and new delights.

Very mysterious was the Society of Aphrodites who by a holy oath, and by frequent change of their meeting place, sought to hide their secret. The men were given names from the animal kingdom; the women from the flower kingdom.
On the other hand in another club we have the manuscript of the statutes, signs of recognition, and index of members with the noms de plaisir. This was the Société du Moment. This manuscript affords a profound insight into the atmosphere in which this society of cynicism reveled.

A fourth secret pornologic society was the Secte Anandryne, the club for tribades, who celebrated their orgies in the Temple of Vesta. We will give later a detailed description of this club and its meetings.

The origin of this secret society is explained by Delbène (Juliette I, 25): "Vice need not be suppressed for that is the only fortune of our life. One must only surround it with such a mystery that will never be revealed." De Sade’s description of the Society of the Friends of Crime was plainly designed from the above plans. This society had its own printing plant with twelve copyists and four readers. In the club building were many cabinets d'aisance which were served by young girls and boys who were forced to gratify all the desires of the visitors of this place. One found seringues, bidets, lieux à I'anglaise, linges très-fins, odeurs. But one could be cleaned by the tongues of boys and girls.

In both seraglios of the house were boys, girls, men, women and animals for the satisfaction of every kind of vice. Murder cost 100 Thaler. The novice entered nude into the assembly room with a crucifix at the end of which was a Bible. Before her admittance Juliette was asked if she wished to undergo the kinds of immorality and crime that are tolled off. After she assented she received The Instructions for Women entering the Society of Joy. The orgies taking place in this secret club will be described later in the analysis of Juliette.
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:29 am

The Prostitutes

It is apparent from the foregoing representation that the eighteenth century with its animal passion was the century of the prostitute. The prostitute was idolized and idealized. The more vice and pleasure she knew the higher she stood over the honorable woman. In Philosophy in the Boudoir the novice Eugenie asked her teacher in love, Madame de St. Ange, what a putain was, a word she heard for the first time. The teacher replied: "So are called these public sacrifices to male debauchery who are always prepared to sacrifice their temperament and their interests. It is a fortunate and noble profession but is dishonored by the general meaning since it crowns joy. They are more useful to the state than all the prudes and virtue for they have the courage to serve it. They are indeed the women truly worthy of love, the only wise women in the world. Since I was 12 years old I have striven to be worthy of the name and feel most happy when in the middle of pleasure I hear myself called this, for then I fly into the heights of passion." This was what the de Goncourts called “enjoyment of the damage of a good calling" and stood as a universal monument of the women of the eighteenth century.

Rétif de la Bretonne rose to the following swansong of prostitution in his Monsieur Nicolas: "If you (the prostitutes) cannot marry do not therefore despair. You are still useful. By the pleasures which you can afford, by the joys of your profession you can bring the basest of men into the bounds of pure nature and prevent them from giving themselves to sick women and suffering loss of health. Never be defiant and irritable, always remember that maidens of your profession are the true joys of men, true priests of passion. Guard yourselves!"

This glorification of the prostitute often took on strange forms. The Chevalier de Forges often uttered the wish to the in the arms of a prostitute. In his lifetime he had sought his pleasure and fortune with prostitutes. He also wanted to find death there. This wish was granted him. He died in the middle of his pleasure in the arms of a prostitute.

This elevated opinion of prostitutes was mirrored most brilliantly in their relations with the police. We saw that de Sade had the bordello of Duvergier protected by the police. This was actually true at the time of the origin of Juliette, during the Reign of Terror and the Directory. Yet under the regency stray prostitutes were punished, individuals were even sent to New Orleans. Manon Lescaut, the famous tale of Abbé Privost, need only be recalled to show the glorification of the prostitute in French literature. Sick prostitutes were sent to Bicêtre. Inspector Marais, as we have said, had to send regular reports on the prostitutes of Paris to King Louis XV. But a serious inspection was lacking. Parent Duchatelet has gone through the archives of the police prefect of Paris from 1724 to 1788 and made the following observations:

"That the toleration of the police in regards to prostitutes and bordellos was unlimited; that they entered only in very severe cases. That they never searched the houses unless upon repeated complaints by neighbors.

"That in many houses murder was committed, in some, maidens and men were thrown from the windows, the uproar was mainly from the soldiers; the neighbors ran the greatest danger in getting home and often were unable to pass.

"That in all arrests the greatest arbitrariness prevailed, everything depended on the mood of the police commissioner and his aides."

The Revolution was the golden age of prostitution. Those events which de Sade described in his works were actualities. According to Parent Duchatelet all rules and regulations were done away with in 1791. The profession of prostitution was no longer an especial object for legal statutes. It was recognized as a business which everyone was privileged to practice and held that any restrictions thereupon would be an affront to personal liberty.

So these maidens were to all intent free and were allowed to do as they pleased. They saw themselves emancipated, a state of affairs which they had at no other time and in no other land enjoyed.

An unbridled boldness, an unexampled scandal was the result. The Reign of Terror and Directory delineate the highest summit of freedom and undiscipline which prostitution had ever reached. We recall that Marquis de Sade spent the entire period of 1790 to 1801 in complete freedom in Paris.

The prostitute became the Goddess of Reason whom all must worship, and every woman became a prostitute. In July, 1793, a new play was presented at the Theatre of the Republic, entitled, The Freedom of Women. But in reality it described the boldness of vice. The chief character, a husband, dissolute by inclination, inconstant in character and enemy of propriety, declared: "The charms of my wife should be shared by more than one fortunate being!"

Public prostitutes multiplied on all the streets, especially in the Palais Royal, Maison Egalité and Champs Elysées; in the loges of the theatre, in the public houses and in the great restaurants one saw the most outrageous behavior. Paris became the cloaca of the whole Republic and drew to it all the dissolute characters of the provinces. Pleasure soon became brutality. In the summer of 1796 the Boulevard du Temple was the scene of unrestrained vice. In a great company of men and women, including girls of 12 and 13 years of age, there was carried on a truly animal relation. The animal passions took hold of them all and they gave way to the most shocking fornication. But in spite of all the indignation, even to attacking the police, there took place in the wide expanses of the Palais Royal and the Champs Elysées almost daily "scenes of the most horrible and most shameful immorality."

Here the ideal that Marquis de Sade had in his novels was actualized: mass-vice! The immoral conduct was accomplished by costumes à la grecque that led moral people into the maelstrom of vice. This infection of morals by the poison of vice has been excellently described by Rétif de la Bretonne in his account of the activity of a prostitute on the streets.

"The girls walk up and down the streets; some make themselves known by the elegancy of their clothing, but most by the unashamed revealment of their charms. Young men permit themselves the greatest of freedoms in public. Our children lap up the poison of their charms. The daughter of a worker sees a well-dressed woman walking down the street eagerly followed by some young men; they stop her, talk to her and embrace her. The innocent girls feel a longing to be like that well-dressed woman and to be the object of admiration of young men. Another easy convert to prostitution! Easy enough for the young boys and girls to find opportunity to sin. To step on the streets was to step into sin."

According to police reports in October, 1793, the galleries of the theatres were packed full of children from 7 to 15 years of age; both stage and gallery were scenes of unbridled lust. "Many of the children were stark naked and made lascivious gestures to the spectators." It is no accident that these monstrosities took place in the autumn of 1793 after that fateful September day when the blood flowed freely down the streets. It is no accident that the pinnacle of vice was reached in the days of terrorism. De Sade who in the December of this year had again been placed in prison had during this time viciously waded in blood and lust. It was the time when even the secret pornologic clubs became public and there were celebrated in the opera house "nude balls," the face alone being masked. The number of daily balls for prostitutes entered into the hundreds. "The Nudities of Greeks and Romans" was a daily sight in the theatres.

The number of prostitutes in Paris in 1770 is estimated by Parent Duchatelet to have been 20,000 in a population of 600,000. At the time of the Revolution it grew to 30,000.

If but a glance at the different kinds of prostitutes is vouchsafed it is apparent that the mistresses of the ancien régime were mainly recruited from the theatre-world. Actresses, singers and dancers were special favorites.

Mercier tells that the filles d’Opéra had decided favor with the men. La Mettrie emphatically declares: "Where can voluptuousness be shown off to its best limits than on the stage?" and praises the charms of the famous dancer Camargo. D’Alembert cynically believed that the good fortune and richness of the dancers and singers was "a necessary result of the law of movement."

Vivid light is cast upon these affairs by two anecdotes told by Casanova. His friend Patu introduced him to a famous opera singer, Mademoiselle Le Fel, favorite of Paris and member of the Imperial Academy of Music. "She had three lovable little children who ran all around the house. 'I adore them,' she said. 'They deserve it for their beauty,' I (Casanova) answered, 'although each has a different facial appearance.' 'I can well believe it! The oldest is the son of the Duke of Annecy, the second of Prince Egmont, and the youngest is due to Maisonrouge who has just married Romainville.' 'Oh, pardon me, I thought you were the mother of the three children.' 'But of course I am!' As she said this she looked at Patu and broke out into loud laughter with him. I was a novice and unaccustomed to seeing women usurp the privileges of men.

"But Le Fel was no bold creature and belonged to good society. Had I been better acquainted with the times I would have known that it was nothing unusual. The great gentlemen who strew about their posterity left their children in the arms of their mothers, paying them heavy pensions. As a result the more fecund these ladies were, the better they lived."

The second anecdote is yet more characteristic. One day Casanova saw at Lani's, the ballet master at the opera, five or six young girls from 13 to 14 years old, accompanied by their mothers. He began flattering them, while they listened with modestly closed eyes. One of them complained of headaches. While Casanova offered her his smelling-bottle, one of the girls said to her: "You must have slept very badly last night." "No, that’s not it," answered the innocent Agnes, "I think I'm with child." At this so unexpected answer from the young girl whom from her age and appearance he had taken for a virgin, Casanova said: "I did not think that Madame was married." She looked at him for a moment surprised. Then she turned to her companion and they both laughed aloud.

The ballet dancers and the chorus girls received no salary so that "many men had to make up for the deficiency of an honorarium." With few exceptions this caste took "pride in being disdainful." At that time there were many ballet dancers and singers who were more vicious than tolerable, had no talent and yet lived comfortably. For it was self-understood that such a girl must destroy every virtue in order to escape starvation.

A dialogue in The English Spy showed that the same was typical throughout the theatrical world.

The Duke of Bouillon spent 800,000 Livres in three months on the opera singer La Guerre. The prostitute La Prairie belonged to those women who are in the nude at the petite maison of Marshal Soubise. "It's the custom of my friend, Abbé Terrai!" This moral priest had a precious bed in his house on Rue Notre Dame. When the dear visitor entered she found a covered painting which when uncovered revealed the pretty body of a nude woman. "Madame, it's the Costume," the abbé cold-bloodedly remarked, showing her with these words that he would also like to have her in this costume.

The famous Mademoiselle Du Thé was originally "Rosalie" in chorus and as such initiated the young duke of Chartres into the practices of Venus. When she was discarded by this prince she went to London, ruined many lords there, returned to Paris, where she opened a gambling hall that brought her much money and allowed only the rich to enter. This Messalina was thoroughly greedy and selfish. She later became the mistress of Prince d'Artois. But Du Thé did not always swim in gold. In a report of Police Inspector Marais of December 12, 1766 we find: "Yesterday Du Thé did not have a sou! She had to borrow a thaler and six livres in order to go to the Italian opera."

The actress Dubois made a catalog of her lovers reckoning on a twenty-year-activity 16,527, i.e. about three a day. "Her greed for gold was equal to her greed for pleasure." This well known history influenced Marquis de Sade. In the Philosophy in the Boudoir Madame St. Ange estimated that she had given herself to 12,000 men in 12 years.

La Chanterie, originally a chorus girl, was of a rare beauty. The artists often used her as a model. She was also painted as a madonna for the chief altar in a church. After an Englishman had seen her in the theatre, but not without a bitter after-taste, he came to the church, saw the head of the madonna and cried out in surprise: "Oh, it's the virgin who gave me a dose!”

Next to the theatrical profession the shop-girls were most in demand. The jeunes ouvrières appear in de Sade more than once. Rétif de In Bretonne described this class of prostitutes with especial preference in his works. He held for a long time a secret correspondence with the modists of a large establishment in rue le Grenelle Saint Honoré. The proprietor of this shop was a Madame Devilliers, who worked for Countess Du Bury. The latter had also been a modist before she entered the bordello of Gourdan. The life and activity of these modists, were described by Rétif in his Le Quadragénaire. According to Parent Duchatelet professional prostitutes gladly entered the shops during the Revolution. It almost seemed as if the shops had become adjuncts to the regular houses. Prostitutes were of course always present at the restaurants, cafés and bars. Casanova when in search for beauty would first visit a café. The Paris police-order fining the host 100 francs if caught having immoral girls was never enforced.

Pimping reached a high stage of development in the eighteenth century. Marquis de Sade described many types, for example, Dorval who through the work of his prostitutes owned thirty houses. Peuchet in 1789 spoke of pimps in his Encyclopedia and Rétif de la Bretonne discussed them in his Pornography (1770). The police lieutenant received an anonymous letter from a prostitute: "We girls cannot exist without protectors. Usually our choice falls on the wickedest scoundrel in the neighborhood so that he can protect us for better or worse. Once we have made our choice we must stick to it. We must tolerate his laziness, drunkenness, gamblings, beatings and vices. The only way to get rid of him is to find a worse scoundrel who can beat the old one up and is for that reason a worse tyrant and despot."

All kinds of pimps and pimpesses, that necessary correlative to prostitution, are found in de Sade’s works. On the last page of the Pornography there is an index of these mamans publiques. Such women had many names. Those companions who could no longer practice their trade were called pieds-levés. The actual pimps and pimpesses were variously named maquerelles, baillives, abbesses, supérieures, mamans. The name maîtresse or dame de maison did not appear before 1796.

In Justine and Juliette all bordellos are richly provided with children, especially little girls, who served the purposes of vice and were given over to the brutal passions of the crowd. All this led to a great expansion in the traffic for boys and girls. We have already seen the extensiveness of the supply for the Deer Park. Similar places existed for the needs of private individuals. Rétif de la Bretonne gave detailed information on the modus operandi in Vol. 16 of his Nights of Paris. Under the arcades of the Palais Royal one saw children of both sexes being led by pimpesses. The death rate must have been fearfully high. "One pays the children," says Rétif, "as one pays for an animal. Parent and pimps come to an agreement on the price." Rétif remarks that this trade existed under the ancien régime and that it formed one of the chief sources of income to the Inspector of Prostitution, who no doubt had to share his profit with the police lieutenants. Needless to say the trade was never in danger of interruption from the police.
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:30 am

The Palais Royal and Other Public Places for Prostitution

The Palais Royal was a city within a city. It was the city of prostitutes of Paris and the centre of Parisian life in the eighteenth century. It formed a pretty little world all of its own with its gambling-dens, royal and jacobin conspirators, prostitutes and bandits, respectable yet degenerate customs, its luxury and poverty. The Palais Royal, not far from the Louvre, was built for Cardinal Richelieu in the years 1629 to 1634 by Lemercier in the spot of the former Hôtel de Mercoeur; it was inhabited for a time by Louis XIV who had it rebuilt and then presented it to his uncle, Duke of Chartres, and thus it was passed on to the Orleans family. The regent, Phillip of Orleans, inaugurated it as the chief city of pleasure and debauchery for respectable society. His great-grandchild, Duke Louis Philipp Joseph of Orleans, the notorious Philippe-Egalité, had the palace entirely reconstructed in the years 1781 to 1786 until it received its present form, consisting of a great number of palaces, gardens, arcades, market-halls, theatres, cafés, gambling-dens and other resorts for pleasure. The chief galleries of the Palais Royal were in the east, the Galerie de Valois, in the west, the Galerie de Montpensier on whose northern end the Palais Royal theatre lay, in the north, the Galerie de Beaujolais. The splendid garden of the Palais Royal was in the form of a parallelogram and was surrounded by 186 arcades. In the immediate proximity stood the theatre of the Comedic Française.

Before and during the Revolution the Palais Royal developed into that gay and colorful centre that has found so many excellent descriptions by travelers from all countries. Casanova described how it looked before its reconstruction in 1750: "Curious as I was about this so famous place, I looked closely at everything. I saw a very pretty garden, walks surrounded by great trees, reservoirs, tall houses, throngs of men and women walking about, stalls here and there selling books, perfumes, toothpicks and other small articles. I saw great number of straw-chairs that were rented for a sou, men and women eating alone or in company, waiters hastening to and from the foilage concealing steps." An abbé named for Casanova all the prostitutes who were walking around.

In the year 1772 Marquis de Carraccioli remarked that the Palais Royal was the place for elegancy, the Luxembourg for dreamers, and the Tuileries for "all the world." But after the burning of the Opera (1781) and the consequent reconstruction of the Palais Royal all the night life of Paris gathered in this latter place. Here took place during the Revolution and Directory all those horrible scenes which we have partly already described. The Palais Royal became the Hall of Prostitution and the Sewer of Paris as Mercier in his The New Paris and Rétif de la Bretonne in his great work on the Palais Royal have described. Rétif investigated the night life in the Palais Royal as a doctor would the "anatomy of a corpse." He wrote in Monsieur Nicolas in 1796: "It is well-known that the Palais Royal is the general rendezvous for all the passions and enterprises of vice, prostitution, gambling, swindling, crime, etc., and hence has become the center of all observation. This famous bazaar enticed me not by its sights but by the pleasures I found there."

Mercier gayly desired that Lavater, the famous physiognomist, might be present at the Palais Royal on a Friday evening so that he could read in the faces of those present everything that is usually kept in the deepest recesses of the heart. There were to be found prostitutes, courtesans, duchesses, and respectable housewives: they did not delude themselves there. But perhaps with all his science this great doctor might have been deluded. For there were distinctions and very fine nuances which must be very carefully studied. "I assert that Dr. Lavater would have great difficulty in distinguishing an ordinary prostitute from a respectable woman and that a shop-girl can without his great knowledge point out the fine points of differentiation." Such unconstraint, unceremoniousness, and free and easy ways has never existed in the world except in Paris and there only in the Palais Royal. All were familiarly addressed, words were bandied to and fro, remarks were made about the woman's lover in the presence of her husband, and vice versa, couples were caught up in a mad whirl, laughter and frank talk resounded everywhere. Lavater should by all means have made his physiognomical studies in the Palais Royal.

'"The weather may have been fair or rainy but every evening at five I would walk along the Palais Royal. I am usually alone around the Bank d'Argenson. I converse with myself on politics, love, gastronomy or philosophy and give myself up to the complete freedom of the Palais Royal. One sees the young rakes in the Allée de la Foi follow the footsteps of a courtesan who walks along unashamedly with laughing gestures and joyous eyes. But immediately they leave her for another, banter her in common and attach themselves to none. My thoughts are my prostitutes." So wrote Diderot in the beginning of Rameau's Nephew.

These nightly promenades in the Palais Royal were famous throughout the whole world and was the first sight that tourists flocked to see in Paris. Here piquant adventure was sought—and found. It often happened that men looking for pleasure in the nightly promenade at the Palais Royal surprised their own wives with the same purposes. The women in the Palais Royal were all whores whether they belonged to the profession of prostitution or not. Whoever made nightly visits there was stamped with that name.

The famous Street of Sighs (Allée des Soupirs) was the promenade for the prettiest and most enticing girls and women recruited from all classes of life. Respectable ladies, the theatrical world, the higher demimondes and the better-class prostitutes were the goal of the rakes seeking for plunder. But also in the other streets, in the Allée de la Foi, the Allée de Club, under the colonnades and arcades there gathered untold numbers of dispensers of lust followed in close numbers by young and old roués from all parts of the world. This was the El Dorado of prostitution. Here were hidden corners, secret nooks, and lurking places in the form of numerous shops, beer dens, gambling halls and theatres. Here Rétif de la Bretonne learned from his friend, the notorious charlatan Guilbert de Préval, who was well versed in the secrets and kinds of passion in the Palais Royal, "how best to amuse women and how women can best satisfy the desires of men." Rétif could recite from memory the names of the prostitutes of the Street of Sighs; he also knew well the huris, the exsunamites, the berceuses, the chanteuses, the converseuses, as well as many other sexopathologic types. Rétif in his work on the Palais Royal wrote: "We will write a moral book about immoral affairs which has to do with foals, asses and other animals. The beauties of the Palais Royal are very pretty, especially the young ones. What happens to the old ones is the same all over the world: an old animal is never pretty. We will tell of remarkable and unbelievable morals. But first we would like to give an idea of the features, the age, the general appearance, the morals and talents of these beauties under the name they have assumed, noms de guerre." Here Rétif described thirty-two prostitutes of the Allée des Soupirs. He then told the history of each of these girls, throwing many interesting side-lights on the state of morals during the Revolution. The second volume of his work treated of the famous "circus" of the Palais Royal.

"The majesty of this ball, the charm of the orchestra, the proud movements of the dancers, the beauty, the elegance of the spectators, all contributed in giving a magical appearance to this subterranean retreat. Later attention was excited by the drinks, the gambling and the private rooms serving all kinds of tastes for love. We noticed that after nine o'clock, the hour when respectable women go out to eat, only prostitutes remained. We observed them very curiously in our capacity as an investigator." One of the girls served as cicernone for him and pointed out the others, the so-called "sunamites."

The sunamites received their name from the concubines of King David who was kept alive in his old age by the heat of their bodies which aflamed anew his powers. There were many in the Palais Royal who kept a number of girls just for this purpose. Six girls were furnished to act as a cure for a single man. The first time the matron herself was present to superintend his wants. He was given an aromatic bath and a thorough cleansing of his body. Then a heavy muzzle was placed on him and he was placed in bed with a sunamite close to each side. Two girls could save him in this manner for only eight days, then they were replaced by a fresh pair. The first pair then rested for fourteen days so that in all there were three alternate pairs. The patient had to pay the girls three louisdors all told. Each girl received six francs, the matron twelve. Careful protection was given that the virgin modesty of these sunamites went untasted. Otherwise the cure would have been harmful rather than useful. Indeed if the patient wrought a miracle, proved again that the Lord is all-powerful, he would have to pay heavy damages to the girl; as a precaution the sum was placed on deposit with the matron before the cure. A girl lasted in this business three years, counting from the time she reached womanhood. A girl who was used every day could last at the utmost one year. The period of sunamite service amounted practically to the novitiate in the order of prostitutes. When the first was finished the girl automatically entered the higher rank.

Marquis de Sade also had Justine do this nightly heating service to a hoary old monk (Justine II, 228).

The third volume of Rétif's Palais Royal treated of the "Colonnades" and introduced the converseuses or exsunamites, 43 in number, whose work it was to entertain respectable ladies in diverse ways.

Mercier tells of another specialty of the Palais Royal. During the evening meal in a restaurant, which also served as a bordello, at a given signal from the proprietor there stepped down from a balcony, to the accompaniment of soft music, a nude nymph, who pirouetted about the tables presumably to aid the digestion of the diners.

At the hours from eleven to twelve one could see along the galleries of the Palais Royal the four and forty famous figurae Veneris, lascivious positions classified by a contemporary French author and very popular at the time.

In the Reign of Terror the Palais Royal became the scene of the maddest orgies and a favorite meetingplace for the dregs of prostitution and for the soldier-girls. The gardens, the galleries and other public places of the Palais Royal "were the most notorious gathering places for prostitutes and soldiers. They boldly transacted the most lewd practices in the streets and blocked all respectable people from passing. Obscene pictures of men and women, scribblings as well as paintings were drawn all over the streets and walls. In the nooks hidden by trees and fountains the freest practices were indulged in by the soldiers and prostitutes." Almost all the soldiers in the guard were pimps. Indeed many of them had only enlisted so that they could live on the proceeds of their staff.

We will close our description of the Palais Royal with the words of one of the best connoisseurs of Parisian corruption in the eighteenth century. Mairobert cried out in The English Spy: "All the bulwarks of vice and depravity, all the passionate and voluptuous orgies, wild abandonment and free and easy familiarity, all are to be found on the nightly promenades in the Palais Royal!"

All other amusement places paled before the Palais Royal yet there were a great number nearby. As fast as one died out another took its place. A similar condition, though far milder, exists in the present nightclubs. Of the others the Vauxhall d’été and d'hiver and the Colisée were the most popular. Admission cost from one to three livres but ensured the entrant pleasures of every imaginable kind.

An Italian artist Torré opened the Vauxhall d’été in the year 1764 in the Boulevard Saint Martin. Fireworks, lantern-shows and elaborate plays were held. From 1768 on dances and balls were added. The Vauxhall d'hiver was in the western part of the city district of Saint Germain, near rue Guisard. It was built in 1769 and opened on April 3, 1770. Ballets with very pretty dancers were mainly given.

The Colisée was a building with gardens for dancing, song, play, festival, fireworks, etc. It lay in the western part of the Champs Elysées, near the Avenue Neuilly and was opened at the marriage of the Dauphin, later Louis XVI.

According to Dulaure the public purpose of these establishments was to amuse the Parisians. But the secret purpose was "to corrupt and plunder them." The managements winked at the number of Prostitutes in their places and entered into arrangements with them and the police.
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:31 am


We proceed from the description of prostitution and amusement places to an investigation of the chief aberrations of the sexual life and begin with the most common, onanism.

The branler, as it is technically called by de Sade, occurs almost on every page. In the very beginning of Justine as she was sorrowing for her parents, Juliette showed her how to satisfy herself by manustupration, a practice she had learned in the convents. This passionate excitation, which can be done every moment without the aid of another, was the best consolation for sorrow, for onanism caused all pain to disappear with safety (Justine 1, 5). Delbène, the superior in the convent, to whom Juliette was entrusted, was a very passionate woman and had from the age of nine "used her finger to satisfy the wishes of her mind." (Juliette I, 3). In the "Society of Friends of Crime" there even existed a Room for Masturbation (Juliette III, 65). The Duke of Chablais also praised the French method of onanism as the best (Juliette III, 292). Madame de St. Ange, who in the beginning of Philosophy in the Boudoir imputed to Eugenie an entire course in the arts and technical expression of love, does not forget to acquaint her with this comfortable kind of self-pleasure (Philosophy in the Boudoir I, 43). Havelock Ellis has also noted the use of masturbation for driving away pain.

Mairobert had Madame Richard express herself in characteristic fashion on the enormous spread of onanism in France. This so very refined art which she learned from a member of the French Academy became more and more the fashion in this century of passion and—philosophy. In the famous bordellos of Paris, Gourdan, Florence, and Brisson these arts were practiced. "Many also practiced simple and mutual onanism to escape children and the danger of syphilis" (The English Spy).

The number of poems and brochures on the "voluptuous fingers of the libertines" were very numerous at this time. Many prostitutes indeed even preferred onanism and practiced it with their clients.
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:31 am


This chapter is perhaps most notable for the sexual life of France in the eighteenth century from an historical viewpoint. We do not believe that ancient Lesbos saw such conditions as ruled in France at this time. Here too de Sade's works truly mirror the picture of his age and inform us on the frequency of amor lesbicus or Sapphic love.

Juliette immediately opens with a description of the passionate tribadic scene among the nuns of the Panthémont convent (Juliette I, 43, if.). Mondor entertained himself by peeping at a lesbic love scene (Juliette I, 283). A decided type of tribade was drawn in the man-hater, Clairwil (Juliette II, 106), who promptly organized an orgy with Juliette and four other women (Juliette II, 138-150, also III, 157). The highest tribadic arts were to be found in Bologna (Juliette II, 306 ff.). The Princess Borgia (Juliette IV, 100 ff.), Queen Charlotte of Naples (Juliette V, 259, VI, 12 ff.) are tribades. This specialty of love has a great number of adherents in Venice (Juliette VI, 156 ff.).

In Justine there are also to be found as many, if not more, lesbian scenes, e.g., between Dorothée and Madame Gernande (Justine III, 285); Seraphine was a worshipper of the Sapphic art (Justine IV, 116).

De Sade also did not lack allusions on the explanation of tribadism. A tribadic orgy between Juliette and Durand surprised a young and an old woman, the latter in the autumn of her life and resigned to her own sex a substitute. But perhaps she was predestined to this by the extreme length of her clitoris. De Sade mentioned this expressly as being the case of another tribade, Madame de Volmar (Juliette I, 34). Only twenty years old, she was the passionate companion of Delbène and had a clitoris de trois pouces, thus being able to play the rôle of a man and pederast. The Venetian tribade Zatta was a similar woman with masculine allurements (Juliette VI, 194). De Sade asserted that nearly all tribades, practiced paedicatio.

Mirabeau described in My Conversion a tribadic orgy of thirty court ladies. The descriptions of this author, whom Diderot and numerous other authors have followed, did not transgress reality. Mairobert in his English Spy furnished us with many highly interesting documents that afford astounding insights into the activity and organization of the Parisian tribades of the eighteenth century. His already often mentioned Confessions of a Young Girl unrolled a picturesque panorama of the mysteries of the notorious Sect Anandryne which celebrated its orgies in the Temple of Vesta.

A young girl from the town Villiers le Bel, daughter of a peasant, was recruited by Madame Gourdan for her bordello. One day the father met her as a prostitute at the Tuileries. A great public scandal grew from this. But the daughter had already been promised to the Imperial Academy of Music so that the father had to return home empty-handed. In addition she became pregnant. Mairobert had the girl, who called herself Mademoiselle Sapho, tell him the story of her life. It can certainly be assumed that Mairobert, the imperial censor in all the secrets of Parisian society, has woven in his own experiences in the Confessions of a Young Girl. At any rate this strange report is one of the most famous and important contributions to the cultural history of France in the eighteenth century. We give a detailed discussion of the case and book.

From youth Sapho was inclined to coquetry, fond of finery, vain, lazy and with an insatiable desire for pleasure; in short, all the attributes of a prostitute. At fifteen she was already very lascivious and often gazed in admiration at her own nudeness and lasciviously caressed all parts of her body. This circumstance is very instructive and shows how sexual perversity comes to the fore. Sapho would never have been seduced by Gourdan no matter how she was kept at home by her parents unless the girl had found an opportunity for intercourse with a man; it is clear that such a fiery nature went of her own accord on the path of tribadism due to the necessity of her nature. The mode of life, the interplay of contrary sexual feelings play the main rôle. We look very skeptically at her heredity.

One day Sapho was surprised at these caressings of her body and was severely punished by her mother; she decided to flee from her parents. We have already mentioned that Madame Gourdan had a branch of her Parisian bordello at Villiers le Bel; Sapho had often seen the inmates prettily dressed, laughing, singing and dancing in the village. She determined to go there and was naturally received with joy and sent to Gourdan in Paris where she was turned over to an accomplice who took charge of the first prostitutions of Gourdan's novices. But after this accomplice had examined the girl she forgot about her usual course and sent the following characteristic letter to Gourdan:

You have found a pearl in this child; she is, on my honor, pucelle, if she is not a vierge. But she has the clitoris of a devil. She will be hence more useful for women than men. Our dear tribade must pay you the weight in gold for this acquisition.

Gourdan immediately let this discovery be known to Madame de Furiel, one of the most famous tribades of Paris, by the following letter:


I have discovered far you a king's—or better—a queen's piece that will suit perfectly your depraved taste—for I cannot judge otherwise inclinations so contrary to mine own. But I know your generosity which causes me to relax my rigorousness and beg to inform you that I have secured for your services the prettiest clitoris in all France, a virgin, at most, 15 years. Just try for yourself and I am certain that you will be unable to thank me enough. If not send her back to me, understanding, of course, that you will not have maltreated her. She will always be the choicest piece of virginity for the finest of connoisseurs.

The business was completed and Sapho was sold to Furiel for 100 louisdors.

There now follows a description of the luxurious house of Madame de Furiel. First Sapho had to take a bath, eat a rich supper and then go to bed. On the following morning Furiel's dentist investigated Sapho's mouth, fixed her teeth, cleaned her and gave her aromatic mouthwash. Then followed another bath, careful manicuring of fingers and nails, removal of superfluous hair and a thorough cleaning of all parts of her body. She was next sprayed with a great amount of essences and perfumes, her hair was curled into great locks and let fall loose on her breasts, bright flowers were placed in her hair. A slip, à la tribade (cut wide in front and back) was carefully adjusted so that nothing was really hidden. She was then brought to Madame de Furiel.

Madame de Furiel, reclining on a sofa, received her. She was a woman of about thirty years, brunette with very black eyebrows, somewhat corpulent and masculine (homasse). It took two hours for Sapho to be initiated into all the mysteries of lesbian love. After the love-bout Madame de Furiel called two chambermaids by whom they were washed and perfumed. Then they sat down to a delicious supper at which Furiel told Sapho all about tribadism in Paris and that they were organized as the Secte Anandryne and held their festivals in the Temple of Vesta. Not every woman was admitted. There were examinations for those who desired entrance to the sect. They were especially severe for married women and only one out of ten passed. The parties were shut up in a boudoir, which contained a statue of Priapus "dans toute son énergie." There were besides different groups of males and females in the most obscene positions. The wall-frescoes displayed similar pictures. Numerous representations of the male members excited the senses; books and pictures of an obscene content lay on the table. At the foot of the statue was a little fire that had to be continually fed with inflammable material, so that the postulante had always to take care that there was sufficient fuel on the fire; if but for a moment she forgot to watch the fire in the entrancement of so many objects of masculine passion, the fire went out and gave proof of her weakness and destruction. These examinations lasted three hours daily for three days.

After this tale Madame de Furiel promised our Sapho pretty clothes, hats, diamonds, theatres, promenades, instruction in reading, writing, dancing and singing if she would only be true to her and never have intercourse with men. Sapho readily agreed to this.

Then on the next day began the great metamorphosis. Modists, manicurists, and other shop-girls arrived and surrounded Sapho in all comfort, she was then brought to the opera and was joyously admired by the other tribades.

On the following day Sapho was introduced into the mysteries of the anandryne sect with great solemnity and notable ceremonies. In the middle of the Temple of Vesta stood a cylindrical room that received light from a glass cover on top and on the sides. A small statue of Vesta was in the room. The goddess was represented standing majestically on a globe as if just stepping down to preside at the meeting. She seemed to sway in mid-air.

About this sanctuary of the goddess was a small corridor, in which two tribades paraded up and down during the meeting so that all the entrances were watched. Between the entrances stood a marble plaque on which were inscribed golden verses, at each side were altars with the necessary vestal fires. Next to the most resplendent altar stood a bust of Sappho, the protector of the temple, the oldest and most noted tribade. Next to the other altar stood a bust of Mademoiselle (alias Chevalier) d'Eon, "the most famous modern tribade." Around the niches in the walls stood the famous Greek tribades sung of by Sappho: Thelesyle, Amythone, Cydno, Megare, Pyrrhine, Andromeda, Cyrine, etc. In the middle of the room stood a great cylindrical couch on which rested the Lady President and her scholars. Pairs of tribades sat all around in Turkish fashion on small footstools, each pair interlaced and composed of mother and novice, or in the mystical terminology, incuba and succuba. The walls of the room were decorated with hundreds of reliefs, showing the various private parts of the woman as shown in Venette's Tableau of Conjugal Love, Buffon's Natural History and in the cleverest anatomical plates.

The reception of our Sapho was in the following manner: all the tribades sat in their places in their festival clothes. The mothers wore a red levite with a blue girdle, the novices a white levite and a red girdle and no underclothes. As Sapho entered she first saw the holy fire that burned with a pleasant and aromatic flame upon a golden pan; it was continually fed by two tribades with pulverized fuel. Sapho had to kneel at the feet of the president, Mademoiselle Raucourt, a noted actress at the Comédie Française; her mother, Madame Furiel said: "Dear president and dear companions, here is a postulante. She appears to have all the desirable properties. She has never had intercourse with a man, is wonderfully built, and has shown fire and zeal at the trial I gave her. I beg that she be taken in under the name Sapho." After this speech both had to withdraw. Shortly thereafter one of the guardesses of Sapho informed her that she had been admitted to a test without a dissenting vote. Sapho was then completely undressed, given a pair of white slippers, covered with a light mantel and brought back to the assemblage. Here the Lady President arose, gave Sapho her own seat and uncovered her mantel. Sapho was then put to a thorough examination by all the tribades as to how many of the thirty charms of women inscribed on the marble plaque she possessed:

Then one of the oldest of tribades read the following old French poem:

Let her who claims the honor of being beautiful,
Of reproducing in herself the superb model
Of Helen who once set the universe aflame
Spread in her favor thirty diverse charms!
That covering her thrice each in turn,
White, and black, and red intermingled
Offer as many times to the marveling eyes
The changeful hues of a single color.
Since nine times to this masterpiece of love
Nature, prodigal and miserly turn by turn,
In opposed extremes, with an ever-sure hand
Traces for her the measure of her dimensions
Three little trifles still, she will have in her features
The perfect contrasts of a divine combination.
Let her hair be blood, her teeth like ivory,
Let her skin surpass the freshness of a pure lily,
So that the eye, the eyebrows, but of a blacker shade,
That the lashes emphasize its whiteness.
Let her nail, her cheek, her lip be vermilion;
Her hair, her waist, her hand long;
Her teeth, her feet short and also her ears.
Let her brow be high, and her breast broad;
Let the nymph above all, with rounded buttocks
Present well-rounded forms to her lovers;
Let her be so at the waist that her lover without hurting her
Can firmly encircle her with two hands;
Let her sweet mouth with infallible augury
Announce the narrow painful access to pleasure.
Let the anus, the vulva and the belly
Be gently swelled and never flat.
A little nose pleases greatly, also a little head.
A teat which resists the kiss that it invites;
Fine hair, thin lips, and very delicate fingers
Complete this beautiful whole which one never meets.

Of these charms somewhat more than half were needed for admittance, i.e., at least sixteen. Each pair of tribades decided separately and whispered their opinion into the ear of the Lady President, who counted them and announced the result. All had decided in favor of our novice. This result was then corroborated by a kiss à la florentine. Sapho was then dressed as a tribade and had to swear an oath never to have intercourse with men or to betray the secrets of the order. Then Madame Raucourt gave an inaugural address whose content in short was:

"Ladies, receive me in your ranks, I am worthy of you." These words are to be found in the Lettres of Mile. D’Eon. This d'Eon was a model for tribadism. Her expression can well stand as a motto for the address.

Next Raucourt spoke of the origin of the Secte Anandryne. Lycurgus had started a school for tribades in Sparta. The convents in modern Europe, an emanation of the colleges of vestals, embody the constant priesthood of tribadism. How gratifying it is that a woman can find her pleasure so much easier than a mere man. For any suitable instrument in the boudoir or toilette is sufficient for the purpose.

Tribadism must spread everywhere the cult of Vesta and furnish zealous propaganda for it. The best known tribades were then named. Duchess of Urbsrex, Marquise de Terracenes, Madame de Furiel (the protectress of our Sapho and wife of the general-procurator), the Marquise de Téchul (who dressed as a chambermaid, cook or modist to satisfy her passion), Mademoiselle Clairon (famous actress of the Théâtre Français), the actress Arnould, the German tribade Sonck (kept by a brother of the Prussian king). Poulet-Malassis has solved the puzzles of these names in his edition of The English Spy: "Furiel" is Mme. de Fleury, "Urbsrex" is the Duchess of Villeroy, "Terracenes" is the Marquise de Senecterre and "Téchal" is the Marquise de Luchet.

Mlle. Julie, a young tribade, is mentioned; she has been initiated into the lesbian art of love by Arnould and Raucourt. In conclusion the joys of tribadism are extolledL intercourse between the opposite sexes is fleeting, short and illusory. Only that between women is true, pure and lasting and has no remorse. Are defloration, pregnancy and childbirth pleasures?

"Tribadism leaves no remorse and is the sauve-garde of our young girls and widows, it increases our charms, holds them longer, is the comfort of our old age when no man wants us, a real rose without thorns throughout our whole life."

After this effective speech the holy fire is allowed to go out and all depart for the banquet in the vestibule; there is an abundance of wines, especially those of the Greeks; a number of passionate verses are sung from Sappho. When all were intoxicated and could no longer restrain their passions, the fire was again lighted in the sanctuary, and a wild orgy began. The two heroines who held their "lovebout" longest received as a reward a golden medal with the picture of Vesta and the pictures and names of the two heroines. On this day the winners were Madame de Furiel and Sapho.

Thus we leave our happy Sapho in the arms of her victory.
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:32 am


Marquis de Sade sang the song of pederasty in all refrains. The most finished and expert pederast was Dolmancé in the Philosophy in the Boudoir. "There is," says Dolmancé, "no other pleasure in the world comparable to this, Oh, there is nothing more delightful than the back of a sweet young boy!" (Philosophy in the Boudoir I, 99). He described in detail all the joys of this vice. Although Dolmancé felt more drawn to the male sex he was not abashed at undertaking paedicatio with a woman and indeed introduced young Eugenie to this pleasure. On the other hand Bressac, whom Justine surprised in the act of intercourse with his lackeys, was a thorough homosexualist and had a deep hatred for the feminine sex (Justine 1, 145). As far as we recall, he was the only character whose sexual perversion de Sade ascribed to heredity. All the others had gradually acquired sexual perversions during their formative years. We are certain that de Sade who showed himself to be a profound savant of patho-sexual personalities here described from reality. And so it is in real life. Pederasty by heredity is the exception; pederasty by seduction, by vicious degeneracy and last but not least by mental illness, is the rule. Bressac develops the theory that the pathicus, of whom he was one, was destined by Nature to be an entirely different man from all others (Justine I, 162-164). He explained that this inborn passion rested upon a construction toute différente. It would be a stupidité to punish them for what was not their fault. Dolmancé, however, gave an entirely different explanation that suffices for most pederasts. "If the purpose of nature was not such then why did she make the openings to the exact proportion of our members. What other reason could there be for nature to have made round openings."

The tribades, too, in de Sade rejoiced at Grecian love, whether by artificial instruments or by the aid of a clitoris. The spread of this vice is described as tremendous by contemporary authors. Duvergier tells that the pederasts are much sought after and are well paid. Numerous scenes of pederasty appear in the pages of Justine and Juliette.

Since the sixteenth century pederasty had found an increasing horde of devotees in Paris. Mirabeau assures us that during the reign of Henry III "men were found in mutual embrace under the portals of the Louvre," and that under Louis XIV pederasty was governed under strict laws and statutes. Henry III was himself a homosexual. Henry IV was very much opposed to it but could not prevent the reappearance of homosexual intercourse in court under Louis XIII. Philipp Orleans, brother of Louis XIV, became a homosexual; the story of his unhappy marriage with Elizabeth Charlotte von der Pfalz, due to his preference for men, is well known. It is reported on contemporary authority that nobles in the court of Louis XIV vied to turn him from his perverted path so that they could rule him by a mistress. But the young king exhibited a deadly hate toward the men who so sought to influence him. One of the Gentlemen of the Chamber of the king reports in his Memoirs that in 1652 after a dinner with the fifteen year old king Cardinal Mazarin had sexual intercourse with him.

In an old work Gallant France (1695), which is the second part of the Amorous History of the Gauls of Prince of Bussy-Rabutin, there is a chapter on the founding of a pederasty club by the Duke of Grammont, Sire de Tilladet, Manicamp and Marquis de Biran. All members were investigated on the strength, health, potency, vitality and beauty of their bodies. Celibacy from women was a cardinal rule. Every member had to undergo a rigid regime to fit himself for the arduous duties and demands of his laybrethren. If one of the brothers married he had to explain if it had happened because he was forced by his parents, by reason of an inheritance, dowry, etc. He had at the same time to swear never to love his wife and to sleep with her only until she bore him a son. For this grace, special permission was also necessary and this was allowed him only once a week. The brothers were divided in four classes although the father-priors could possess anyone. Those wishing to enter the order were examined in a series by the four father-priors. A strict silence over the affairs of the club was enjoined and only those whose inclination for Greek love were known could be admitted to the rest. The pederastic orgies took place in a country house. The participants wore over their official robe a cross on which was represented in relief a man stepping on a woman. The club did not last long for a royal prince joined the ranks and the club was summarily banned by the king.

At any rate the cult of pederasty was still prevalent in the French court in the eighteenth century. It would have been a miracle if that lascivious roué, Louis XV, had not fallen a victim to paedicatio and other homosexual practices. So it is reported that he often showed himself nude to a handsome boy that he was fond of and often embraced him.

The Revolution also brought this vice to the highest point. We have already given many illustrations of pederasty. In the year 1798, Dupin, the Commissioner of the Department of the Seine, reported: "For some time there has spread a yet more shameful kind of immorality. The reports of the police-agents on pederasty have increased to a horribly enormous sum. Sodomy and sapphic love have also appeared with the same boldness until they are as prevalent as prostitution."

In his Porter of Chartreux of 1789, Rétif de la Bretonne declared that "pederasty, bestiality and other forms of immorality degraded France continually for five or six generations."
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Re: Marquis De Sade: His Life and Work, by Dr. Iwan Bloch

Postby admin » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:32 am

Flagellation and Phlebotomy

Flagellation, that mighty assistant of vice, was thoroughly described in all its branches by Marquis de Sade in all his seven works. We mention only the great scenes of flagellation in Justine and Juliette (Justine III, 129; Juliette II, 138-150) between women; (Juliette V, 335). Juliette with three young modists visits the home of the Duke of Dendemar in St. Maur; his sexual monomania consisted of whipping the girls until they bled; he had to pay great sums for his pleasurable sacrifices (Juliette I, 344 ff.).

Marquis de Sade had also made extensive literary researches on this subject. He mentioned the most important writings of his time on flagellation by Meibom and Boileau (Juliette V, 169). These studies had taught him that it was the man who at all times took the active role in flagellation. He was surprised that the active whipping found little preference in women with their natural cruelty and had Dolmancé hope for the time that women would also show themselves masters in this specialty (Philosophy in the Boudoir I, 157).

Interesting details are given by Cooper in his Flagellation and the Flagellants in the Eighteenth Century. Voltaire often mentions the whip especially when he wants to make the jesuits look ridiculous. The whip is also often mentioned in the memoirs of the time.

The blows were often imparted on even small children. It was asserted that thereby the muscles and skin were "strengthened." In all French convent schools the rod was the usual punishment for the young girl, as it was the favorite instrument for flagellation with the nuns. The holy sisters whipped their students with delight in the same manner that the holy fathers absolved their penitents.

During the Reign of Terror the nuns were waylaid and ignominiously flogged. The tragic case of Théroigne de Méricourt is well known. She was flogged by a band of women and as a consequence lost her reason. After the downfall of Robespierre the young girls on the street were disrobed and beaten by the anti-terrorists.

Shortly before the Reign of Terror there existed a Whipping Club whose feminine members "delightfully laid on the whip." Many respectable ladies belonged to this club of whose sexual tendency there can be no doubt.

There has already been so much written about Jean Jacques Rousseau’s preference for this kind of sexual excitation that we refer to Krafft Ebing for the story of his chastisement by Mademoiselle Lambercier. Cooper is full of stories of battles in which the fair sex took a prominent part. His reports on some causes célèbres of this kind are very interesting.

England is well known today as the classic land of sexual flagellation. One of her most famous flagellants was Theresa Berkeley in London, 28, Charlotte Street, who obtained great wealth and fame through her art. She possessed untold numbers of instruments of all kinds for excitation and enrichment of passion, "Thus, at her shop, whoever went with plenty of money, could be bitched, whipped, fustigated, scourged, needlepricked, half-hung, holly-brushed, furse-brushed, butcher-brushed, stinging-nettled, curry-combed, phlebotomized and tortured till he had a belly full." She also had prostitutes, a Negress and a gypsy for active flagellation. She invented a machine which caused the man fastened in it to experience voluptuous sensations (The Berkeley Horse). "There is a print in Mrs. Berkeley's memoirs, representing a man upon it quite naked. A woman is sitting in a chair exactly under it, with her bosom, belly and bottom exposed: she is manualizing his embolon, whilst Mrs. Berkeley is bitching his posteriors. The female acting as fricatrix was intended for Fisher, a fine, tall, dark-haired girl. Everyone who visited Charlotte Street at that day must recall her as well as the good humored blonde, Willis; the plump, tight, frisky and merryarsed Thurlow. Grenville with the enormous bubbies; Bentine, with breadth of hip and splendor of buttock; Oliver, the gypsy, whose brown skin, wicked black eyes, and medicean form would melt an anchorite; the mild and amiable Palmer with luxurious and well fledged mount, from whose tufted honors many a noble lord has stolen a sprig; and Pryce, the pleasing and complaisant, who, if birch was the question, could both give and take." Berkeley died in 1836, having amassed a fortune of 10,000 pounds sterling in eight years. Her correspondence containing letters from both sexes and from the highest classes in Europe were destroyed.

We gave this small description because we have found no description of the Institution of Mrs. Berkeley in modern works on flagellation and because there are to be found in de Sade's works similar machines in which the victims are tied.

Phlebotomy also plays an important part with de Sade. In the third volume of Justine there appeared a Prince Gernande, who could excite himself only by bleeding the veins of women. There were many such scenes in his works. Particularly horrible was the scene in which the prince bled his own wife and then satisfied himself sexually on her unconscious body (Justine III, 253).

Phlebotomy in the eighteenth century was an operation also practiced by the clergy. Brissaud stated that there were definite periods for bloodletting in convents. With the Carthusian friars, for example, the rule was five times a year, with the premonstrates once a year. The feasts of St. Matthew and Valentine were special seasons for bloodletting.

Raulin was accustomed to cure the frequent hysteria of women by phlebotomy. Brierre de Boismont reported the case of a man who had infusions made in the genitals and posteriors of his wife. As soon as he saw the blood, he became extremely excited and satisfied himself on her person.
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