Main  Contacts  
Table of contents
PREFACE
TOUCH-1
TOUCH-2
TOUCH-3 (begin)
TOUCH-3 (end)
TOUCH-4 (begin)
TOUCH-4 (end)
SMELL-1
SMELL-2
SMELL-3.1
SMELL-3.2
SMELL-3.3
SMELL-3.4
SMELL-3.5
SMELL-4 (begin)
SMELL-4 (end)
SMELL-5
HEARING-1
HEARING-2
HEARING-3
VISION-1.1
VISION-1.2
VISION-1.3
VISION-2.1
VISION-2.2
VISION-2.3
VISION-2.4
VISION-3
VISION-4
VISION-5
APPENDIX A
APPENDIX B HISTORY-1
APPENDIX B HISTORY-2.1
APPENDIX B HISTORY-2.2
APPENDIX B HISTORY-2.3
APPENDIX B HISTORY-3.1
APPENDIX B HISTORY-3.2
INDEX OF AUTHORS

frequent personal odor in man. Musk is the odor which not only in the 

animals to which it has given a name, but in many others, is a 

specifically sexual odor, chiefly emitted during the sexual season. The 

sexual odors, indeed, of most animals seem to be modifications of musk. 

The Sphinx moth has a musky odor which is confined to the male and is 

doubtless sexual. Some lizards have a musky odor which is heightened at 

the sexual season; crocodiles during the pairing season emit from their 

submaxillary glands a musky odor which pervades their haunts. In the same 

way elephants emit a musky odor from their facial glands during the 

rutting season. The odor of the musk-duck is chiefly confined to the 

breeding season.[61] The musky odor of the negress is said to be 

heightened during sexual excitement. 

 

The predominance of musk as a sexual odor is associated with the fact that 

its actual nervous influence, apart from the presence of sexual 

association, is very considerable. Fere found it to be a powerful muscular 

stimulant. In former times musk enjoyed a high reputation as a cardiac 

stimulant; it fell into disuse, but in recent years its use in asthenic 

states has been revived, and excellent results, it has been claimed, have 

followed its administration in cases of collapse from Asiatic cholera. For 

sexual torpor in women it still has (like vanilla and sandal) a certain 

degree of reputation, though it is not often used, and some of the old 

Arabian physicians (especially Avicenna) recommended it, with castoreum 

and myrrh, for amenorrhoea. Its powerful action is indicated by the 

experience of Esquirol, who stated that he had seen cases in which sensory 

stimulation by musk in women during lactation had produced mania. It has 

always had the reputation, more especially in the Mohammedan East, of 

being a sexual stimulant to men; "the noblest of perfumes," it is called 

in _El Ktab_, "and that which most provokes to venery." 

 

It is doubtless a fact significant of the special sexual effects of musk 

that, as Laycock remarked, in cases of special idiosyncrasy to odors, musk 

appears to be that odor which is most liked or disliked. Thus, the old 

English physician Whytt remarked that "several delicate women who could 

easily bear the stronger smell of tobacco have been thrown into fits by 

musk, ambergris, or a pale rose."[62] It may be remarked that in the 

_Perfumed Garden of Sheik Nefzaoui_ it is stated that it is by their 

sexual effects that perfumes tend to throw women into a kind of swoon, and 

Lucretius remarks that a woman who smells castoreum, another animal sexual 

perfume, at the time of her menstrual period may swoon.[63] 

 

Not only is musk the most cherished perfume of the Islamic world, and the 

special favorite of the Prophet himself, who greatly delighted in perfumes 

("I love your world," he is reported to have said in old age, "for its 

women and its perfumes"),[64] it is the only perfume generally used by the 


Page 6 from 7:  Back   1   2   3   4   5  [6]  7   Forward