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10 Absolutely Insane Facts You Didn’t Know About Your Penis

by Andrew Gestalt
fact checked by Rachel Jones

People have always been obsessed with the male anatomy; if you’re one of these people, welcome! We’re about to debunk myths and misconceptions while uncovering a collection of mind-blowing, sometimes humorous, but always fascinating facts about the penis. So, if that’s piqued your interest, get ready to become the life of the party with your penile trivia as we delve into the world of penis realities!

Related: Top 10 Methods Mistakenly Used to Estimate Penis Size

10 Lusting for Angels

Street Doctors: What Is a Death Erection? | Lifetime

Angel lust is the nicer, more poetic way of talking about death erections. Yeah, a man can get an erection after his death, particularly in a violent death. Deaths by judicial hangings, gunshots to the head, poisoning, and even crucifixion all commonly cause them. Side note women also experience this when dying violently, but since it’s not as noticeable, the name focuses on men.

In modern history, death erections are most common in judicial hangings, supposedly happening in one out of three cases. Judicial hangings—specifically the violence of the drop—are what affect this. They usually have a drop of 4-6 feet (1.5-1.8 meters), while suicides typically don’t involve any drop as 50% of suicides aren’t fully suspended.

Headshots, hangings, crucifixion, and violent poisonings all have one thing in common: They cause damage to the brain, spinal cord, or significant arteries. All of these influence the flow of blood to the genitals. This means that even though this is called angel lust, it doesn’t happen because of anything sexual during or after death but because of a physical response to pressure on those systems.

9 Sheathing: A Sign of… Status

Traditional Penis Gourds Worn by Tribal Dancers in Papua New Guinea

Throughout history, the penis sheath has served as a unique embodiment of cultural identity, societal status, and an expression of masculinity. And whether it served as a protective garment or a symbol of prestige, it has been a part of human history globally.

In Papua New Guinea, a sheath is called the koteka. It started with the practical purpose of simply securing and protecting the penis. That purpose has since evolved to have a much more significant meaning. Now a sheath indicates tribe affiliation, and its position and tilt tell a societal narrative. An upright koteka indicates a man is a virgin; a tilt to the right signifies high rank, and a left angle shows a member of the middle class.

In historical Europe, men used codpieces to cover their genitals, becoming a fashion statement that often reflected their social status; unsurprisingly, the bigger, the better.

Loincloths and other versions of penis sheaths were used; you can see their usage in Africa, the Americas, Asia, and more.

8 Spiny Penises Used to Be All the Rage

Pearly Penile Papules Explained

In 2011, a study was released that discovered that the human lineage lost a chunk of DNA that played a role in the formation of penile spines approximately 700,000 years ago. The research suggests that our early ancestors had penile spines—similar to the barbed structures found in several animals today, including chimps.

Supposedly, these spines increased sexual sensation and maybe removed rival sperm, but no one knows for sure. Interestingly, this period aligns with the time when it’s believed that Homo sapiens began to demonstrate signs of more complex social structures and a shift toward monogamy.

The logic is this: spiny penises, with their heightened sexual sensation, would encourage quick sexual encounters. Losing these spines could allow for longer sexcapades. A longer time engaged in sex led to pair bonding, creating deeper social connections and a more cooperative community structure.

Surprisingly, humans might not have entirely lost penile spines. Pearly papules that could be related to penile spikes are estimated to be found in upward of 48% of adult men. Maybe these penis pearls are to blame for the 40% of men who finish prematurely.

7 Extraterrestrial Erections: Failure to Launch

Sex In Space: How It’s Done

On Earth, a stiff breeze can make blood rush into the penis, and an ill-timed erection is on every guy’s nightmare list. However, in space, it’s more likely you’ll have a “taffy pull” more than raising a flag pole experience.

Blood distribution within the body changes in a weightless environment. More blood flows toward vital body parts like the head and chest and less to the body’s fun zone. Coupled with the absence of gravitational force, it’s hard to be erect in space.

There are not a lot of actual studies currently being done, but NASA has said that they want to study it in more detail as humans want to travel in space. They know that arousal is challenging but possible; what they don’t know is how conception, pregnancy, and birth would change. Or really, if space sex would even be pleasant.

6 A Long, Hard Look at Erection Duration

Diagnosing priapism

Having an erection that just won’t quit sounds like a fantastic problem to have. After all, an erection lasting an hour or two could satisfy everyone involved. Now think of this happening not for minutes or hours but days!

This is what Elliott Rossiter, a 41-year-old British man experienced. Except his tent wasn’t pitched in a steamy encounter, but rather an innocent get-together with friends in France. His erection arrived suddenly and uninvited, and to make the situation worse, it stubbornly refused to leave for the next 36 hours.

Rossiter dealt with his companion for 19 grueling hours, but even a cocktail of anti-inflammatory and steroid medications at a local clinic did nothing to soften it. He was rushed to a hospital, as he could barely walk, and even a soft touch from clothes became excruciating. He was diagnosed with a serious condition called priapism.

Priapism is when an erection overstays its welcome, becoming more painful the longer it persists, and has nothing to do with sexual stimulation.

Doctors at the hospital told Rossiter that without surgery, he would lose his manhood. The life-saving operation involved a small incision at the base of his penis to drain the stagnant blood. This surgical feat left him with two tiny battle scars and a case of erectile dysfunction that lasted several months. Both are a small price to pay considering the alternative.

His experience is a testament to the warning at the end of the little blue pill commercials. If your erection lasts for more than four hours, see your doctor. If you can’t get it down by then, you’re not getting rid of it without medical help.

5 Measuring Up: The “Two-Finger” Rule

Why Men In Classical Art All Have Tiny Junk

Ancient Greeks, renowned for their advanced civilization, held an unexpected preference for smaller male genitalia. According to scholars like John Clarke from the University of Texas, a modest penis symbolized refinement and elegance.

The “two-finger rule” in Ancient Greece, a widely debated topic among historians and scholars, says that the ideal male genitalia was not larger than the width of two fingers.

The preference for a small penis was not just about the physical appearance; the Greeks appeared to think a smaller penis was a sign of intelligence, rationality, and self-control—traits highly valued in Ancient Greek society. On the other hand, they viewed a larger penis as a sign of stupidity, lust, and a lack of self-restraint.

This philosophy is clearly reflected in their art, with statues often showcasing male figures with less-than-impressive endowments and creatures like satyrs, known for their lust with large members.

So if you don’t measure up to the ideal size today, you can take solace in that to the ancient Greeks, you were ideal.

4 Diphallia: A Tale of Two D’s

Diphallia || Rare Congenital Condition || Neonates born with Two Penises | #MEDcyclopedia#diphallia

Diphallia is a rare congenital condition in which a male is born with two penises. It’s so rare that there are only 100 documented cases worldwide in over 400 years. Imagine being Dr. Johannes Jacob Wecker, stumbling on this condition in 1609 while studying a cadaver.

Diagnosis is straightforward; like an extra toe or finger, it’s hard to miss. There is a spectrum that ranges between glans diphallia, bifid diphallia, and complete diphallia. And treatment is also fairly basic, primarily surgical, usually removing the extra penis and its urethra.

Diphallia alone isn’t dangerous; however, it is often accompanied by other defects that would make life challenging. They can range from a divided scrotum to abnormalities in the kidneys and sperm production. Ultimately, though, a man with diphallia can lead a perfectly normal, fulfilling life, as the story of “Triple D” shows.

Supposedly, “Triple D” is a man from the U.S. West Coast with complete diphallia. He says that although he has faced challenges, he’s navigated life with two fully functional penises while maintaining his anonymity. His claims haven’t been independently verified, but he says he has slept with over 1,000 people. While all his claims are possible, they’re unlikely simply because there’s nothing more than his word and a picture he says is real.

3 Appearance Matters; Size—Not So Much

Does size matter? | Women | One Word | Cut

When it comes to the matters of the penis, it’s not all about size, as many men might fear. According to a Swiss study, women generally value the overall cosmetic appearance of the penis more than its length.

Women were asked to compare photographs of penises; interestingly, penis length was rated sixth in a list of eight aspects.

Another study showed that 85% of women were satisfied with their partner’s penis size, contrasting with only 55% of men feeling the same about themselves. In fact, studies have repeatedly shown women care less about penis size than men do. A recent study using 3D models offered a possible explanation, showing that women preferred slightly larger penises, but only when it was a one-time thing versus a long-term relationship.

2 Fast Flyers, Slow Swimmers

Sperm attacked by woman’s immune system | Inside the Human Body – BBC

Every ejaculation sends between 80 and 300 million sperm on a suicide mission. About 6-7 inches (15-18 centimeters) is the distance these tiny swimmers must cover if they want to fulfill their reproductive purpose. Those 6-7 inches are sperm cells’ worst nightmare; only 200 sperm ever “see” the egg.

When ejaculated, sperm travel at a speed of around 28 mph; once the pump-n-dump is finished, they’ll swim around 0.00018 mph (5 mm/minute), roughly five times their length every second. Reaching the egg within 15 to 45 minutes of ejaculation.

While that seems slow, sperm are extremely fast swimmers. For comparison, scaling them to 6 feet (1.8 meters), which would be terrifying enough, sperm swim four times faster than any Olympic gold medalist.

If ovulation hasn’t occurred yet, sperm can survive and wait for an egg for up to five days.

1 You Got Whatcha Got, So Don’t Throw a Fit

Why don’t you have a larger penis? – Ask your mother! | UroChannel

First off, your penis size is probably normal. Most men who believe their penis to be “too small” actually fall within the average size range. You’re right on the mark if you achieve an erect length of around 5 inches (13 centimeters).

Genetics play the biggest role in your size, and genes don’t change just because you feel like they should. Claims of easy penis enlargement through pumps, pills, or exercises are easy to make and often come with promises of god-like sexual prowess as a side effect.

Jelqing, pumps, rings, medicine, and penis fillers all have these claims, but there’s minimal scientific evidence to support their claims of long-term gains, and minimal is being generous because there’s none.

More importantly, these techniques can potentially harm your penis. And while surgery may seem like a tempting solution, the results are mixed at best and can lead to complications such as infection, scarring, and even loss of sensation or function.

You don’t need a larger penis for better sex or increased attractiveness. In most cases, if you can’t please your partner with what you got, getting bigger isn’t going to suddenly satisfy them. The reality is that talking with your partner, understanding their needs, and focusing on your overall health and fitness will improve your sexual relationship more than a change in size ever could.

fact checked by Rachel Jones