8 Of The Craziest Myths About Women’s Bodies You Never Heard

Illustrated by Anna Sudit.
If you were able to go back in time by 200 years or so, there’s one thing about being a woman you'd almost certainly experience: Women’s bodies were a mystery.
That was mostly because medicine was dominated by men, who had very little interest in learning about women’s sexual health.
For example, in the 1800s, physicians didn’t think it was possible for women to experience pleasure during sex. They also thought that higher education would ruin a woman’s reproductive organs. And that your womb could just get up and wander around your body.
No, really. These are actual theories that members of the medical community came up with, and in many cases, even wrote full books about. They were taken as fact. And what the general public believed — even if doctors didn't support it — was often even more bananas. In the 1700s, 1800s, and even the early 1900s, all this led to a culture that saw women as frail, toxic creatures that could be both dangerous and unnaturally vulnerable.
Some of the medical theories about women’s bodies from the era are so utterly ridiculous, it’s hard not to laugh out loud while reading them. So we rounded up eight of the craziest, most unscientific, highly sexist myths about women’s health from the 1700s, 1800s, and even a dash of the early 1900s. Enjoy — and maybe feel some relief to be alive now.

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