What Sex Was Like in Ancient Rome

Although some still consider ancient times as scandalous and explicit for today’s standards, it’s important to state that there’s much more to Romans and sex than pure perversions. From religious rituals to kinky homosexual acts, Romans would participate in all sorts of kinky stuff we still see as taboo. Our article aims to demystify ancient sex by talking about the legacy of the Roman Empire.

Sex and Religion

There’s no point in explaining how important religion was in the Ancient Roman society. It’s pretty well documented by now, and most of us know many of the gods they worshiped and celebrated. However, an interesting point not many people talk about is how closely tied religion was to sexual activities in Rome.

Check this history article about History of sex in ancient Rome.

Romans closely follow the ideas their religion promoted. And since they had six holy couples, myths about them would serve as ways to lead your everyday life properly. But these divine couples were no short of being horny and even kinky for today’s standards. They had a great impact on how ordinary men and women would go about their mortal sexual lives.


Unfortunately, Romans were prone to somewhat similar misogyny we see today. Their male gods were free to roam around and explore their sexualities, while their ladies were fateful and would never cheat on them. The best example of how this affected Romans is with their priests and priestesses.


The Vestal Virgins, who served the goddess Vesta, made a vow of celibacy, while the male priests would go around having fun and even marrying. On the other hand, prostitutes had major roles in ritualistic festivals like Floralia. They would dance nude and provide sexual pleasure, for example.

Marriage and Infidelity

We see marriage and love differently from Ancient Romans these days. Namely, it was mostly a way to have kids and get wealthy if one partner was from a rich family. It wasn’t unusual to be an unhappy couple back then, just like it isn’t nowadays.


In most cases, it was all about the woman spreading her legs and her male hubby penetrating her. Their idea was that females should only wish for kids and nothing more. And if they did try to have romantic affairs outside their marriage, they could get punished by law.


If the man could prove adultery, he would legally have the right to castrate the guy who did naughty business with his wifey. But just like today, standards only apply to ordinary people. The rich and powerful men and women would frequently fuck behind their partners’ backs, enjoying all sorts of kinks in their mansions and palaces.

Sex and Morality

Even if Roman men were free to roam around and put their penises in other women, the rest would have every right to call them out. It wasn’t all fun and games. Ancient Romans had the idea that a real macho would behave and pursue self-control. Society would condemn excess and people who would indulge in carnal pleasure without any restraint.


Some laws would prohibit men from doing whatever they wanted to. For example, the rape of a free Roman citizen was punishable by death. On the other hand, deflowering a virgin that swore celibacy would also mean that a man would hang to death. But besides these two, Ancient Romans would legally kill people who would participate in incest.

No matter how you look at the Roman Republic or Empire, they had a fully operational legal system. And interestingly enough, we still use some of their ideas and explore their ways of dealing with crimes in law schools across the world. However, we would argue our laws are somewhat better even if we as people didn’t change all that much.


Another interesting thing about Romans was their views on homosexuality. Even if we’ve come a long way since the mid-60s and the sexual revolution, there’s still so much stigma against the LGBT community. And if you compare modern society all over the world with that of Ancient Rome, you can’t help but wonder what happened to us between then and now.


Romans didn’t recognize same-sex marriages. In their eyes, the point of marrying was to have kids, as we’ve already said. Still, gay relationships were more than common back then. It wasn’t unusual for powerful men to have sex with male prostitutes and slaves. In their eyes, they were dominant, and the penetrated ones were weak.


When it comes to lesbians, it wasn’t on the same level as gay relationships were. Since there’s no penetration between two women, they would need to use dildos to make it acceptable. The dominant female would wear male clothes and adopt their mannerisms. The act was only right if there was some sort of male interference between the two lesbian ladies.