6. Czarina’s Official Foot-Ticklers
A lot has been said over the years about Catherine the Great’s sex life. The most famous myth about her involved the czarina dying while having sex with a horse. While that might not be true, it is true that Catherine had a rich love life with many courtiers. She also appointed official foot-ticklers who would pleasure her by tickling her feet while telling salacious stories or singing songs.
The ticklers were selected from women of aristocratic birth. It was a highly coveted position due to the intimate relationship they built with the czarina. The ticklers might even have been present during some of Catherine’s sexual dalliances and refreshed the czarina between sessions by tickling her feet or giving her a smack on the bottom.
5. The Warren Cup
In 1865, the British Museum created the Secretum—a private section of the museum housing all the artifacts deemed obscene in Victorian society. Most of them came from George Witt, a London doctor with an extensive collection of phallic memorabilia. The Secretum soon became off-limits to the average museumgoer as people needed special permission to view the exhibits during a private tour.
During the secret collection’s 100-year existence, there was one object deemed too obscene even for the Secretum—the Warren Cup. It was a silver Roman cup that depicted homosexual sex between two men on one side of the cup and a man with a young boy on the other.
The museum had the opportunity to purchase the Warren Cup in the 1950s for a small sum. It turned it down. The British Museum later changed its mind in 1999 and paid £1.8 million for it, a record purchase for the museum at the time.