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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

II. 

 

Beauty to Some Extent Consists Primitively in an Exaggeration of the 

Sexual Characters--The Sexual Organs--Mutilations, Adornments, and 

Garments--Sexual Allurement the Original Object of Such 

Devices--The Religious Element--Unaesthetic Character of the Sexual 

Organs--Importance of the Secondary Sexual Characters--The Pelvis and 

Hips--Steatopygia--Obesity--Gait--The Pregnant Woman as a Mediaeval Type of 

Beauty--The Ideals of the Renaissance--The Breasts--The Corset--Its 

Object--Its History--Hair--The Beard--The Element of National or Racial 

Type in Beauty--The Relative Beauty of Blondes and Brunettes--The General 

European Admiration for Blondes--The Individual Factors in the 

Constitution of the Idea of Beauty--The Love of the Exotic. 

 

 

In the constitution of our ideals of masculine and feminine beauty it was 

inevitable that the sexual characters should from a very early period in 

the history of man form an important element. From a primitive point of 

view a sexually desirable and attractive person is one whose sexual 

characters are either naturally prominent or artificially rendered so. The 

beautiful woman is one endowed, as Chaucer expresses it, 

 

"With buttokes brode and brestes rounde and hye"; 

 

that is to say, she is the woman obviously best fitted to bear children 

and to suckle them. These two physical characters, indeed, since they 

represent aptitude for the two essential acts of motherhood, must 

necessarily tend to be regarded as beautiful among all peoples and in all 

stages of culture, even in high stages of civilization when more refined 

and perverse ideals tend to find favor, and at Pompeii as a decoration on 

the east side of the Purgatorium of the Temple of Isis we find a 

representation of Perseus rescuing Andromeda, who is shown as a woman with 

a very small head, small hands and feet, but with a fully developed body, 

large breasts, and large projecting nates.[134] 

 

To a certain extent--and, as we shall see, to a certain extent only--the 

primary sexual characters are objects of admiration among primitive 

peoples. In the primitive dances of many peoples, often of sexual 

significance, the display of the sexual organs on the part of both men and 

women is frequently a prominent feature. Even down to mediaeval times in 

Europe the garments of men sometimes permitted the sexual organs to be 

visible. In some parts of the world, also, the artificial enlargement of 

the female sexual organs is practised, and thus enlarged they are 

considered an important and attractive feature of beauty. 

 

Sir Andrew Smith informed Darwin that the elongated nymphae (or 

"Hottentot apron") found among the women of some South African 

tribes was formerly greatly admired by the men (_Descent of Man_, 

Chapter XIX). This formation is probably a natural peculiarity of 

the women of these races which is very much exaggerated by 

intentional manipulation due to the admiration it arouses. The 

missionary Merensky reported the prevalence of the practice of 


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