Archaeologists have recently unearthed the remains of a 1,900 year old house in the vicinity of the temple, with elaborate frescoes showing scenes of nature. But the house also concealed a number of unexpected objects – including ancient amulets in the shape of a phallus.
These strange artefacts, and the purpose they served, may be difficult to grasp today. What’s clear is that sex was prominent part of Roman art, belief systems and humour. Paintings, statues and everyday objects depicting sexual organs and erotic scenes were not confined to the private sphere, they were on display both in public and domestic realm.
Many striking examples have been found in Pompeii. Archaeologists who have worked there throughout the years have been exposed to phallic symbols and sexual imagery in the artworks they have recovered.
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