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The People Who Worshipped Anal

by Beth Divine 21 Jun 2019

In the days before film and celluloid, hell, even before paper was a common commodity, people already loved to preserve their exploits and feats. The most common way for these records to be kept was on the sheltered walls of caves and on pots and other manmade practical artworks.

The prehistoric Moche tribe of ancient Peru in South America (approximately were no 100AD to 750AD) exception to this love of recording that which they were most interested and/ or proud of. And apparently what they revered above all else was sex – anal sex to be specific. This is not to say that there are no representations of vaginal sex: there are some. But, the Moche were truly fascinated with anal and carefully depicted all the genitalia to make it very clear that it was not just sex being shown, but it was heterosexual anal sex being shown!

The Moche were brilliant craftsmen and even though their empire has been extinct for over a thousand years, between eighty to a hundred thousand samples of their work are still in existence today. Many of these pieces display a keen interest in the human body, with a special interest shown in sexual differences with genitalia shown very clearly, almost to the point that individuals might even have been able to distinguish their partners personal parts had they been the model for the ceramic pieces in question.

Scholars investigating the Moche’s sexual depictions (don’t ever let anyone tell you that academia is dull) are not sure why they placed such emphasis – reverence even – on anal sex, but they do know that the Moche believed that the circle of life required the flow of fluids in order to maintain itself – not a bad belief system in a country where a year or two of drought could end up decimating the population or even ending the entire lineage.

Academics have also recently realised that while Western traditional beliefs about reproduction were accidentally correct, other tribes had different ideas: some felt that any type of penetration would work, while still others did not see that men had any part in reproduction at all. Still others realised that semen was important, but not the connection to sex, vaginal sex in particular.

Whatever the reasons for it, one thing is clear: the Moche loved anal so much that they were happy to plaster it all over their most precious commodities.