Michelle Knight. Writer, photographer, programmer, truck driver and general, all round nut case. Life is a journey and that's what this blog will probably end up being. Let's see where we go, eh? ;-)
Title - "The Girdle Of Chastity"
Author - Dr. Eric John Dingwall
ISBN - 1-56619-031-2
Pages - 170
Many of us wonder about the chastity belt in passing. We usually see it depicted as an enforcement of male power over their wives when the knights went to the crusades.
But what actually happened? Was it really this way? In this, not-easy-to-find-at-a-reasonable-price book, those questions are answered, as Dingwall delves in to the history of the chastity belt, going right back to the origins of chastity, tries to trace the actual medieval belts, trawls court records and reveals the surprising truth about men, women and chastity.
Me being me, I'm reasonably familiar with chastity in the here and now, but the historical aspect is a heck of a journey to uncover.
The origin of holding virginity as a virtue for marriage, seems to have come from Asia and spread to Africa, where devices other than belts were used. By the time it comes to the knights and their maidens, metal work wasn't up to the job and very little evidence can actually be found to support them actually existing, or being anything other than a means to promote rapid and very serious infection.
A few court records pop up of men being prosecuted in the 1700's for holding their wives in novel devices, but the real kicker is how chastity was applied to men by none other than the prudish Victorians.
Then, of course, you have Higginbottom and the present day, where one manufacturer told me that 95% of their belt sales, are to keep men under lock and key!
Not the most riveting (pardon the pun) read, but full marks for the research that made this book.