Fascinus

Ancient Roman depiction of a magical phallus - FascinusFascinus was an ancient Roman deity who, like Priapus, was associated with worship of the phallus or male sexual organ. But whereas Priapus was depicted as a humanoid figure with an oversized penis, Fascinus was often portrayed simply as an animated penis, as in this stone carving found at the Roman amphitheatre at Nîmes in France.

Stone carvings of this kind were believed to possess magical powers that could ward off evil influences. The name Fascinus is connected with our word “fascinate”, which literally means to bewitch or enchant. For the same reason, women in ancient Rome often wore phallic-shaped pendants around their necks.

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