All The Cock She’ll Ever Need

By | March 25, 2010

Phallus ImpudicusPhallic Symbolism

Why is it that some people can look at anything vaguely cylindrical and assign it the label “phallic”. I remember seeing a TV documentary about the excavation of an Iron Age fort somewhere in England. The work had been carried out by a well known archaeologist of the mid 20th century whose only interpretation of any find he made was of cataclysmic battles and great conflicts.

For example, he’d find a piece of pottery blackened with soot and immediately decide it was in that state because the structure it was in had been sacked and burnt to the ground – not that it was a cooking pot and would have got covered in soot in normal use. Then there were the pits filled with the bones of “slaughtered children” and soldiers who fell defending/attacking such and such a place. Later these were found to be rubbish pits full of animal bones.

It’s the same with phalluses found both in the remains of the ancient world and in contemporary culture, art, architecture and design.

There are those who would assign the label of male genitalia to any column from Nelson’s to those in the main entrance to the national gallery. Monoliths, Egyptian obelisks and even fungi have been attributed with penile characteristics – Specifically the Common Stinkhorn or Phallus impudicus pictured above.

Of course when you have something vaguely edible one society or another will use it as a medicine and credit it with the ability to improve virility. So dried cock-fungus instead of the little blue pills then.

It’s not just limited to the male anatomy of course, though whether those who named the Coco de Mer (Lodoicea callipyge or “Beautiful Rump”) thought there was a land of bottomless women somewhere or consuming it would give you a Jay-Lo butt will be forever a mystery.