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Histoire de Dom Bougre, Portier des Chartreux (1741) - Jean-Charles Gervaise de Latouche

early erotica - buggery - erotic fiction - libertine novel

Histoire de Dom Bougre, Portier des Chartreux (1741) - Jean-Charles Gervaise de Latouche [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]


Tongue-in-cheek retellings and burlesque exegeses of the Sodom story continued during the seventeenth century in plays such as Sodom or the Quintessance of Debauchery (1684), attributed to John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester. These retellings became extremely common in French livres philosophiques (that is, erotic, bawdy, and anti-clerical books) of the eighteenth century.

The most famous of all such works, Histoire de Dom Bougre, Portier des Chartreux (1741), contains a particularly funny scene in which the biblical story is denounced as slander and homosexuality is fiercely defended as having been gloriously practiced by great men of all times. --http://www.glbtq.com/social-sciences/sodom.html [Sept 2005]

These (coloured) engravings are taken from the 1748 edition of Histoire de Dom Bougre, one of the most famous books in erotic literature. In it, the author Jean Charles Gervaise de Latouche (1715-1782) made Saturnin look back on his love adventures, often situated in a convent.

In those pre-revolutionary days pornography was often the vehicle to criticize religious and political authorities. This work therefore belonged to the category of 'philosophical books' and was banned not so much in the name of decency but rather because of the threat it represented to religion. Despite all the scandal Dom B created, the illustrator has remained anonymous. --http://www.ameanet.org/memberz/divine/ [Sept 2005]

Inspired by The Invention of Pornography, 1500-1800: Obscenity and the Origins of Modernity (1993) - Lynn Hunt

See also: buggery - pornography - subversion - 1740s

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