“Angel Lust” is a euphemism for the ages

So, in my travels, I have seen many things, but one of the things I have been spared is the Death Erection. Luckily, the internet is here to ruin me to everything. This post is probably not safe for work, I want you to know. If that’s an issue, you can check out my recipes or literature reviews or something.

Now on to the good stuff.

Ludwig Krug, Man of Sorrows, 1510-1532

Ludwig Krug, Man of Sorrows, 1510-1532

Yeah, that’s Jesus with an erection. It’s not a big deal. During the Renaissance, he was sometimes depicted with a, you know, *cough*boner*chough* as a way to express the sexuality of christ. I guess that’s refreshing, it’d be pretty cool if a woman got to be in religious art with erect nipples and a wanton expression and have that be cool, too. There is a female variant of angel lust, it’s less dramatic, but it does occur.

Anyway, the phenomenon goes by several names,  here called the Resurrection Erection, though she may just be joking, or also “postmortem priapism.” Philippe Ariès was a french medievalist who thought it was a myth used to explain the gray area between agony and ecstasy, but it has been witnessed following executions, particularly hanging. One 19th century medical text noted that post mortem erections indicate a “sure proof of violent and sudden death.”

Interestingly, erections in paleolithic art found in the context of death or serious danger. You can read more about it by clicking that link or also reading this academic paper on male genital representation in paleolithic art.

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