User:Jahsonic/Notes on penis size in art history
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
However, this statement needs to be nuanced.
- (1) Long, thick penises were considered--at least in the highbrow view-- grotesque, comic, or both and were usually found on fertility gods, half-animal critters such as satyrs, ugly old men, and barbarians. A circumcised penis was particularly gross.
- (2) The ideal penis was small, thin, and covered with a long, tapered foreskin. Dover thinks the immature male's equipment was especially admired, which may account not only for the small size but the scarcity of body hair in classical art. A passage from Aristophanes sums up the most desirable masculine features: "a gleaming chest, bright skin, broad shoulders, tiny tongue, strong buttocks, and a little prick." --Cecil Adams via 
Here is that Aristophanes passage:
- I tell you this—
- if you carry out these things I mention,
- if you concentrate your mind on them,
- you’ll always have a gleaming chest, bright skin,
- broad shoulders, tiny tongue, strong buttocks,
- and a little prick. --The Clouds tr. Ian Johnston
Some of the hermae, such as the Getty herm, seem to confirm this predilection for small phalli. But, be that as it may, examples such as the A Satyr Masturbating and to a lesser extent the Delos phallus and Woman carrying an oversized caricature of a phallus, prove that one finds both large and small penises in Greek antiquity.
In Roman Antiquity, both small and large phalli are found, with a slight predilection for the large phallus.
But there are many examples of small penises in Roman art, see heroic nudity and the statue of the Dying Gaul which has a fairly small phallus, possibly a copy of a Hellenistic original, which would explain the small penis size.
However, the grotesquely large phallus is also found, in such prints as A Witch Riding on a Phallus.
- Greek erotica
- Roman erotica
- Renaissance erotica
- Neoclassical erotica
- User:Jahsonic/A basket full of phalluses