Roman Prostitution Practices

Topics: Prostitution, Sex industry, Red-light district Pages: 5 (1241 words) Published: November 16, 2016


Since before societies could easily compare cultures, they still managed to live with similar practices. Religion, government and laws were treated alike throughout empires, even though only mere travelers were the ones influencing entire populations. Yet, unjust things also spread throughout distant lands, such as sexism and racism, and in turn allowed for prejudice to engulf societies. Nonetheless, things like time and oppression can’t change humanities most carnal desires. Certain practices have conquered laws and have continued to thrive through history. The practice of prostitution has survived since the first civilizations and still lives on today, though a few things have changed.
Sex work was originally done to honour gods and goddesses...

Official prostitutes, on the other hand, had their activities regulated by the police. Within higher end districts, brothels contained hairdressers, to keep the workers looking their best, and aquarioli, or water boys, that waited by the doors with bidets. Due to the popularity of brothels, factors such as Roman fashions were heavily influenced by prostitutes.
During ancient times, things such as prostitution were tolerated because they supposedly helped crime rates, such as lowering the rates for acts of rape and sodomy. The act of sex work was therefore considered a necessary evil. Eventually, laws were made; side streets or districts were devoted to brothels and prostitutes had to dress in a certain manner (The Independent).
Brothels were not the only establishments selling sex; taverns, inns, and bath houses were also common locations for sexual services to be offered. Owners of public bath houses often overlooked the law, as prostitution was illegal in such locations (Amsterdam Red Light District Tours). Later in history, brothels were often called ‘stews’ because of the earlier work done in bath...

They were often known for working for powerful citizens or would work in crowded areas or at gatherings, such as symposiums.
During World War II, the Japanese military established ‘comfort stations’ for their soldiers; these stations were essentially brothels. The women recruited to work at these stations were being promised jobs, but were not told what these jobs involved. The workers were called comfort girls and their ages started as young as 11. The number of women sent to work at the military brothels is estimated to be 200,000 women, yet only 25 to 30 percent of the women survived. ‘As of 2014, there are only 55 known surviving comfort women.’
The Hindu goddess of fertility, Yellamma, is honoured by sexual acts performed by her followers. The women performing these acts are called devadasis. ‘When girls reach the age of puberty, their parents auction their virginity to the highest bidder. Once [their virginity] is taken from them, they are dedicated to the goddess [of fertility] and spend the rest of their lives as prostitutes in the name of Yellamma.’ The girls will be sold night after night to the highest bidder, while the parents often take their...
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