works of Western literature, the
so did write of Aphrodite in his
:"Muse, tell me the deeds of golden Aphrodite the Cyprian, whostirs up sweet passion in the gods and subdues the tribes of mortal men and birds that fly in air and all the many creatures thatthe dry land rears, and all the sea: all these love the deeds of rich-crowned Cytherea…Even the heart of Zeus, who delights inthunder, is led astray by her; though he is greatest of all and hasthe lot of highest majesty, she beguiles even his wise heart whenso ever she pleases, and mates him with mortal women, unknownto Hera, his sister and his wife". Aphrodisiacs are any of various forms of stimulation thought to arouse sexualexcitement. Aphrodisiacs may be classified in two classes:
(visual,tactile, olfactory, aural) and
(stemming from food, alcoholic drinks, drugs, themythical "love potions", and pharmaceuticals).This review will describe six categories of aphrodisiacs:
Scents and Perfumes
Plants and Botanical Preparations
scents and perfumes
occupy a prominentrole and we will initiate our review by them. Although visual, tactile, and aural stimulihave important role in sexual stimulation they were considered to be outside the scopeof this review and will not be discussed. Also
seducing small talk might perhaps bethe most efficient aphrodisiac excluded from this overview.
aphrodisiacs are the largest and most important group. Despite long-standingliterary and popular interest in internal aphrodisiacs, few scientific studies of them havebeen made. Research in the past was often limited to occasional tests of drugs or hormones for the cure of male impotence and most writings on the subject up to veryrecent years are little more than unscientific compilations of traditional or folkloricmaterial. Most unfortunately, with the exception of certain drugs and other psychothropicsubstances such as alcohol or marijuana, which may lead to sexual excitation throughdisinhibition, modern medical science recognizes a very limited number of aphrodisiacs.
, natural products such as
form the oldest and very large categories of this class of aphrodisiacs.
, of naturalor synthetic origin, for millenia have also been used by humankind. However, it was the