Sunday, December 11, 2016

NY Review: Was Rasputin Horse-Hung or Mouse-Dick?

You can learn of interesting historical questions by reading the New York Review of Books. Check out this final paragraph from the essay about "Rasputin: Faith, Power, and the Twilight of the Romanovs" by Douglas Smith in the December edition:

"As for his penis, a big part of the Rasputin myth, rumor had it that, apart from being fourteen inches long, his member had three warts strategically placed along its shaft that enhanced its potency.

"In 2009 a large penis floating in a jar of formaldehyde was the main exhibit at the newly opened Museum of Erotica in St. Petersburg. According to the museum, the grotesque object had been found detached from Rasputin’s body at the scene of his murder, sold to a group of Russian women emigrĂ©es, who had worshiped it as a relic, and was purchased by its director for $8,000 from an antiquarian dealer in Paris.

"But other facts cast doubt on its provenance.

"In 1914, Rasputin was examined after being stabbed in an earlier attempt on his life: according to the medical report, his genitals were so small and shriveled that the doctor doubted whether he was capable of the sexual act at all."

Since everything about this controversial historical is open to question, let's remain skeptical about the medical report and who wrote it. We have no idea if the doctor(s) were political enemies of Rasputin or jealous of his endowment, if he indeed was hung like a horse.

No comments: