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Knowledge of the "Gräfenberg zone" and female ejaculation in ancient Indian sexual science. A medical history contribution

Knowledge of the "Gräfenberg zone" and female ejaculation in ancient Indian sexual science. A medical history contribution

Sudhoffs Archiv 83(2): 171-190

Ancient Indian texts in sexology (kamaśastra) from the 11th century onwards prove that their authors knew about the area later termed the "Gräfenberg zone" in Europe, as well as about the female ejaculation connected with the stimulation of this area. The Gräfenberg zone is a sexually arousable zone in the front part of the vagina, stimulation of which can lead to the discharge of liquid from the urethra, a phenomenon which is described as female ejaculation. The german gynaecologist Ernst Gräfenberg, who worked in America, described this zone, situated beneath the clitoris, for the first time (at least in this century) in Western medicine in an article published in 1950. (There are, however, evidences, that the 17th-century anatomist Regnier de Graaf had knowledge about the mentioned erogenous zone as well as female ejaculation.) Since the 1980s the so-called Gräfenberg zone, popularly termed "G-spot", and female ejaculation have been controversially discussed medically as well as in popular science, first in the United States, then in Europe; both phenomena have meanwhile been accepted as facts in medical manuals and reference books (e.g. the "Pschyrembel"). Whereas the oldest and most well-known sexological-erotological work of Ancient India, the Kamasutra, dating probably from the third century A.D., apparently did not know the Gräfenberg zone and female ejaculation, texts such as the Pañcasayaka (11th century), Jayamangala (Yaśodhara's commentary on the Kamasutra from the 13th century), the Ratirahasya (13th century), as well as the late kamaśastra-works Smaradipika and Anangaranga (16th century?) demonstrably describe both, the Gräfenberg zone and female ejaculation, in great detail. The female ejaculation is described already in the 7th century in a non-kamaśastra-text, in a work of the poet Amaru called the Amaruśataka.

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