It might be surprising but the concept behind condoms has been around since for thousands of years. Ancient Egyptians have been depicted in images as wearing linen sheaths. However, this is debatable as they could have used these condom-like covers for their rituals rather than protection. Cave paintings, possibly from 100-200 A.D. were found in France illustrating the use of condoms or sheaths. This is the earliest evidence of condom usage in Europe.
An Italian named Gabrielle Fallopius was the first man who actively researched and performed tests about linen sheaths used for protection during sexual intercourse. Out of the 1,100 men he tested, none of them became infected with Syphilis. His research was focused on preventing sexually transmitted diseases, but it was later on proven that the linen sheaths were also excellent contraceptives. Casanova has also been known to favor the use of condoms, and referred to it as his ?Redingote Anglaise? or English Riding Coat. In Asia, the Japanese made use of thin leather as condoms and called it ?Kawagata?. They also used tortoiseshell or horn to make their condoms and called it ?Kabutogata?. Dr. Condom or Dr. Conton, who was rumored to be the physician of King Charles II of England, provided the King with condoms made from animal gut. Many have said that the condom was named after him. However, the condom actually came from the latin word ?condus? which means receptacle.
As early as 1844, Hancock and Goodyear have begun mass producing condoms made from vulcanized rubber. The result was a strong, thin, elastic rubber that served as a contraceptive and excellent prophylactic. Almost a century after the introduction of the first rubber condom, the liquid latex condoms were invented. Latex condoms were thin, provided more protection from infection and pregnancy. A long way from when goat guts were used, the first Polyurethane condoms were introduced during the 1990s. These condoms, which many have come to associate with Durex condoms, are thinner and more sensitive than their old latex counterparts. There are now different condoms in the market, colored, studded, ribbed, flavored and glow in the dark. Condoms for women were introduced in early 2000 and has grown in popularity ever since.
The first condom advertisement appeared in the New York Times publication in 1861. It was called Dr. Power?s French Preventatives. However, the Religious sector was not entirely happy with the growing number of advertisements as well as the increase in sales of condoms. The Comstock Law was passed sometime in 1873, which prohibited the advertisement of condoms. To discourage people from selling and buying condoms, the Postal Service started confiscating condoms that were being sold through mail. There were also Social Hygienists who believed that the condom should not be used by Americans. But their plight proved disastrous as more than 75% of the US Troops in World War I became infected with various kinds of STDs. After such a catastrophe, the US government began aggressively promoting the use of condoms during the World War II.
Article from articlesbase.com
A short film on the process of turning flax to linen in the pioneer Canadian home.
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