The Perfumed Garden: A Manual of Arabian Erotology, Sheikh Nefzawi (Editions de la Fontaine d’Or, Paris, 1900 [Imprimerie M. Laballery, Clamecy (Nievre) 1952])
8.75″ X 5.5″, 189pp. original soft wrappers, good condition for age, spine detaching at top and bottom, some small rips and bumps. Back cover states “not to be sold in England or U.S.A”
The Perfumed Garden of Sensual Delight is a fifteenth-century Arabic sex manual and work of erotic literature. The book presents opinions on what qualities men and women should have to be attractive, gives advice on sexual technique, warnings about sexual health, and recipes to remedy sexual maladies. It gives lists of names for the penis and vagina, has a section on the interpretation of dreams, and briefly describes sex among animals. Interspersed with these there are a number of stories which are intended to give context and amusement. Sheikh Nefzawi (Abu Abdullah Muhammad ben Umar Nafzawi), was born among the Berber Nefzawa tribe in the south of present-day Tunisia. He probably wrote The Perfumed Garden sometime during the twelfth century, compiled at the request of the Hafsid ruler of Tunis, Abū Fāris ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz al-Mutawakkil.