Scientists recently discovered the world's oldest sex toy, a prehistoric dildo with a rounded, polished end and carved rings. Uncovered during a cave excavation in Germany, the siltstone phallus is estimated to be about 30,000 years old.
The toy is being studied at a German university—but you don't need to trek it to Deutschland to see ancient dildos. The World Erotic Art Museum has a plethora of old sexy-time relics on display, right here in Miami Beach.
"We have objects from Roman and Greek times that are over 3,000 years old, and intricate jade dildos from Japan that are over 1,000 years old," said David Tarmago, the museum's art director.
Though media coverage of the discovery in Germany has dubbed the find as a "sex toy," Tarmago said that terminology may not be exactly right.
"Most of these were revered items, placed in the home to promote fertility rather than for self-stimulation or intercourse," Tarmago said. "The emphasis in these cultures was to produce large families that could continue the family line and cultural traditions, passing them from fathers to sons."
It wasn't until much more recent times that the things we think of as sex toys—vibrators, penatrative dildos and the like—came into play.
"The first vibrators came out in the late 1800s as a treatment for female dementia, which was then believed to be related to female orgasm," Tarmago said. "Women would visit doctors, who would use vibrating tools to stimulate orgasm."
See how the ancients did it at The World Erotic Art Museum, 1205 Washington Ave., Miami Beach.