Almost every day I visit your webside, enjoying your efforts very much. I hope you can continue your good work for a long time. For many years I searched for articles about chastity belts.
One of my discoveries is an article from Panorama, a Dutch weekly.
I tried to translate the article for you and your readers, but my experience in translating is limited. (School was long ago). I will therefore ask you to read it, and to correct any parts that need it.
Please, keep my identity hidden.
Years ago a Dutch weekly published a magazine article titled Sex and Numbers. There was a part about eighteen memorable kisses, and an article about seven women who wore or possibly wore a cb. Here is my best efforts to translate this article to English.
1. Catherine-Henriette de Balzac dEntragues (1579-1633)
The marchioness de Verneuil, a small and graceful girl, with a very sensitive character was only 20 years old, when she got into a very stormy relationship with King Henry de Fourth of France. (1553-1610). Though Henry loved her, he did not do what she wanted most: marry her. (He married Marie de Midis.) It is possible that he forced the young Catherine to wear a cb. The is the proof? In the French National Library is a seventieth century etching in the Hennin collection. According to the seventieth century French writer P.G.J. Niel the naked lady on the etching wearing a cb is Catherine. And the man to whom she gives the key is Henry the fourth. Hidden behind the bed is a lover, who receives a duplicate key from the servant-girl, paid for by a bag with money. To emphasize what he meant, the artist also drew a jester who tries to prevent bees from escaping a basket, and a cat watching a mouse. The etching is titled: "Du cocu qui porte la clef et sa femme la rerrure." About a cuckold who has the key, and his wife the lock.
2. The skeleton of a unknown woman (end of the 16th, or beginning of the 17 century)
In the year 1889 the collector A.M. Panacher from Munich visited an Austrian province city were an excavating was done near a church of the 15 century. One of the things that was brought up was a lead coffin that was buried in a corner of the graveyard. In the coffin were the remains of a woman who died probably at young age, because of the splendid condition of her teeth. She was probably from a noble family as she wore a expensive damask dress. Her reddish hair was done with two braids and her gloved hands laid crossed over her chest. Under her clothing her pelvis was riveted in a cb, a iron hoop covered with leather, to which a front plate was attached with a pointed chink and an anal plate which also had a small opening. Panacher kept the belt, and the woman was buried again. Who was this woman, and what was her secret? Why was she buried in a cb? Was her husband so envious that she could be unfaithful to him even after she had died?
3. Anne of Austria. (1601-1666)
Number 6598 in the Cluny museum at Paris was possibly made for Anne of Austria, the wife of Louis the thirteenth and mother of King Louis the fourteenth of France. The belt of this cb is a hoop of iron, covered with velvet. The bowed plate with the pointed chink is made of ivory. Anne and Louis married when the were both 14 years old. Anne was very attractive, fair-haired with very delicate features. It took no less four years before the young Louis slept with her. But when he began to like sex, he became an ardent and jealous lover. That is why he used the cb.
4. Marie Lajon (eighteenth century)
Everything that is known about Marie Lajon and her seducer Pierre Berlhe is written in a small book written by the lawyer Freydier in the year 1750. The book contains a speech that Freydier gave during a trial in Nimes (France), where he denounced the behavior of Berlhe. Bertlhe was accused of seducing the young and innocent Marie with the promise to marry her. He was a very jealous man and talked Marie into wearing a metal corset with darns. This corset had a sharp pointed genital opening, and was closed with a padlock. To be even more sure of her chastity he put a layer of wax on the critical points of the device, in which he put his seal. When he went on a business trip he took the key to the cb, and his seal with him. Even after the birth of their child, he forced Marie to wear the cb. When it became clear to Marie that he would never marry her, she went to court. Even during the trial Berthe still possessed the key and the seal. In his sensitive plea Freydier held a tirade against seducers and a plea against cb's. An example from the plea: "after he had conquered the heart of this young girl he wanted to put her body in irons. He wanted to tread her even more cruel than if she had been his slave. Is there a stronger example of barbarism than to chain a young girl? To put her in a prison that she had to carry with her all the time? To lock that with a padlock that only the most jealous Florentine could copy?" The verdict in this case is unknown.
5. Ondia Randone Ancilotti (begin of this century)
The Italian Sculptor Ancillotti developed a cb: pants made of iron rings, secured by a lock. He persuaded his wife to wear this piece of clothing. In order to allow her to go to the toilet he daily removed the belt at 12 noon, and at 8 in the evening. One day -she was pregnant of her first child- she was eating with her girlfriend Adele Gaumier in a restaurant and she had to go to the bathroom. But this was impossible whenever she would not get the key from Ancilotti. When she heard him whistling in the street, she ran downstairs to ask him for the key. With the help of Gaumier she opened the belt, went to the toilet, put the girdle back on, locked it, and gave the key back to Anncillotti. The sculptor was later arrested and brought to trial on the accusation of a cruel treatment of his wife. It is not known if he was convicted, and if he was, what punishment he got.
6. The wife of Jean Parat (begin of the 20 century)
For years they suspected Jean Parat "le pfarmacien tortionnaire" (the torturing chemist) of mistreating his wife. But it took until 1910 before they took action. The police made an investigation and found the woman chained in the house of the Parats. Under her clothes she wore a kind of corset made of chain mail that was padlocked to her body. Jean Parat was arrested and brought for the judge. He said that envy had brought him to his deeds. He said that the chains were long enough for here to do things, like playing piano. In French and British newspapers articles appeared with sensational headlines. On the fifth of March the French magazine Le Rire published a cartoon in which you could see how Parat dragged his chained wife behind him. Under the cartoon was written: By this way you can commit a wife totally to you. Parat was sentenced to prison.
7. The wife of Henry Littiere (20 century)
It did not matter how often Henry beat up his wife, Madame Littiere could not stop chasing other men. She had an affair almost every month. Henry was by profession a baker, but read a lot about the middle ages in his spare time. He found the solution for his problems in an old book about the crusaders who had the habit of locking their wives in a cb, before going to the battle. In the Museum de Cluny at Paris he made more investigations and made drawings of the belts that were on display there. With this information he let an orthopedist make a belt of steel and velvet. When she fitted her cb she insisted on wearing it at home. She gave Henry the key and saying: "for Gods sake, do not lose the key". Not long after that an old lover of Madame Littiere came to visit her. Her lover undressed her, saw the belt and reported it to the Police. Henry thought that the first summon was a joke, but responded to the second on 21 January 1934, and came before judge Chaudoye at Paris. The accusation was: Cruelty. Madame Littiere declared that it was impossible for her to be faithful to her husband. However, the judge sentenced her husband to three months of conditional sentence, and a assigned a penalty of 50 franks.
Readers who want to buy a cb can contact David Renwick in Sheffield (England). Renwick wrought iron belts are made by hand to measurements. Most customers order the belt as an ornament or as a joke though Renwick delivers two keys for the belts that are really worn. There was a man who ordered two belts, one for a woman, and the second for a man. The male model only differs in decoration from the female model. Sometimes orders are refused. Like the order from Italy for 150 belts; too much for the capacity of Reynolds. Reynolds also refused the order from an Australian who ordered a belt for his daughter because he said she "misbehaved".
End of translation
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