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Historical origins of BDSM

Historical origins of BDSM

The historical origins of BDSM are obscure. During the ninth century BC, ritual flagellations were performed in Artemis Orthia, one of the most important religious areas of ancient Sparta, where the Cult of Orthia, a preolympic religion, was practiced. Here, ritual flagellation called diamastigosis took place on a regular basis. One of the oldest graphical proofs of sadomasochistic activities is found in an Etruscan burial site in Tarquinia. Inside the Tomba della Fustigazione (Flogging grave), in the latter sixth century b.c., two men are portrayed flagellating a woman with a cane and a hand during an erotic situation. Another reference related to flagellation is found in the sixth book of the Satires of the ancient Roman Poet Juvenal (1st–2nd century A.D.). Anecdotal narratives related to humans who have had themselves voluntary bound, flagellated or whipped as a substitute for sex or as part of foreplay reach back to the third and fourth century.

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