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Italians in medieval times did not know about the split attraction model


Holmbo
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I have been reading Decamerone by Giovanni Boccaccio. It's a collection of short stories written in the 14th century. Most of them are humourous stories about people having sexual affairs. The funny thing is the sexual attraction is always presented as romantic love, even when it's most obviously is just that they want to bone. Unless the translation is bad it's says a lot about how the people viewed romantic love and sexual attraction as intrinsically linked.

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It's definitely an ingrained connection within our culture. The classic valentines setting, a nice dinner, a fun event, leading back to wine, chocolates, petals, and a bedroom. It's a progression that our culture is familiar with, its simply the way of things. In my almost entriely uneducated opinion, if we went farther back in humans evolutionary timeline, we would find a point where romantic attraction didn't exist while sexual attraction did. I believe romantic attraction was a developed trait because mates who had a stronger bond beyond the rearing of children were more successful. And suddenly mates who weren't romantically attracted to each other were being outcompeted. that's just my guess though, nothing to back it up.

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one thing I notice is that romance seems to be seen as more legitimate than open sexual desire. not sure that is the right phrasing but I get the sense that even if it is obvious to everyone involved that the desire is purely sexual there is a societal expectation that you put on a facade of romance.

so even if they don't think the sex is really linked to romance there has to be a veneer of acceptability which romance applies.

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Yeah, kind of echoing off of everyone else here, I think it was kinda taboo back then with Christianity and all the other major world religions really back then, to just openly say "yeah I got sexual desire", and people didn't want to be excommunicated or sent to jail so they kind of went with what society and the Church said about needing romantic relationships/gestures to get into sexual activities (I guess I could put it that way)?

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I suspect that at a subconscious level they did know there is a difference. They had 2 deities associated with love which were different from each other. The God of "love" (whom poets called Cupid but was commonly known as Amor or Putti) in practice ruled romantic love. The Goddess of "common love" (Venus) was in charge of lust/sex. At least that's how it looks in the books I've read.

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19 minutes ago, 2 Spirit Cherokee Princess said:

I suspect that at a subconscious level they did know there is a difference. They had 2 deities associated with love which were different from each other. The God of "love" (whom poets called Cupid but was commonly known as Amor or Putti) in practice ruled romantic love. The Goddess of "common love" (Venus) was in charge of lust/sex. At least that's how it looks in the books I've read.

Mmh... the Decameron is not a Renaissance work, but still medieval, right? And the attitudes of antiquity vs. middle ages about love and sex are worlds apart. While these deities existed, who, aside from the intellectual elite, knew about them in medieval times (that there was Eros and Aphrodite Pandemos).

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