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  #21  
Old 12 July 2009, 05:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BamaRainbow View Post
Did the girl go skinny-dipping? I really can't imagine that sperm would be able to penetrate through a bathing suit.
Uh huh! When I was in middle school the sex ed people that came to talk to us told us that sperm that might be in a guy's crotch (from nocturnal emissions and not bathing, obviously) will re-activate and go through layers and layers of clothing at the mere hint of a girl, so it's best for people of the opposite sex to just not even touch each other unless they're married. (So no, it probably wouldn't unless the guy was right there doing it into the suit.)

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Originally Posted by BamaRainbow View Post
Just out of curiosity, does anyone know if sperm can survive in chlorinated pool water for any significant length of time?
Even if sperm cells can survive, they would be way too dispersed to be effective.
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  #22  
Old 12 July 2009, 12:24 PM
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A WOMAN is suing an Egyptian hotel claiming her daughter got pregnant - from using the swimming pool.

Tourist authorities in Warsaw, Poland, have confirmed they received the bizarre complaint.
Not to question the Sun's standard of reporting, but is she suing the hotel or the holyday organizer? Is there even someting like a "Tourist Authority" in Poland? What jurisdiction would they have over Egyptian hotels?
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  #23  
Old 13 July 2009, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Joostik View Post
Is there even someting like a "Tourist Authority" in Poland?
I think what they mean is the Polish Chamber of Tourism (of whatever the translation would be). I believe she COULD file a complaint against the tour operator if the company is a member of the Chamber.[/QUOTE]

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What jurisdiction would they have over Egyptian hotels?
None, of course.
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  #24  
Old 17 July 2009, 03:02 AM
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Here's my guess as to what really happend. Girl met boy, they went for a swim, had sex, when the family got home she found out she was pregnant so girl made up story and mom was gullile enought to believe it. I thought my mom was uninfomred growing up but this woman makes mymom seem like an expert.

I also can't imagine a lawyer taking this case and seriously telling this woman she has a chance of winning.
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  #25  
Old 17 July 2009, 03:13 AM
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As an interesting sidenote, failblog just put this up as "Intelligence Fail."
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  #26  
Old 19 August 2009, 01:17 PM
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I remember reading a story about a noblewoman in XVIth-century France who became pregnant while her husband was at war somewhere.

She was brought to justice for adultery, and pleaded (with a doctor to confirm her point) that she had impregnated herself while sleeping naked on a hot summer night and having a dream where she made love to her husband, thus putting herself in the "condition to conceive". "Human seeds" brought in by the wind had done the rest, said the doctor.

As she was from a wealthy and powerful family, the court (and the husband, who wanted to spare himself the ridicule of cuckoldry) decided to buy the explanation, and the lady walked out free, with no stain on her escutcheon.

OK, it was the 1'500s, in a time when no one really knew how humans are conceived, but the "sperm in the swimming pool" excuse is just as believable.

My take is that Poland being extremely Catholic and fiercly conservative, Mom (though fully aware of what really happened) desperately takes any chance to save her little innocent baby girl's reputation.


PS: she could try and blame an incubus. In Poland, that might work.

Last edited by Cyrano; 19 August 2009 at 01:29 PM.
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  #27  
Old 19 August 2009, 02:46 PM
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Do you have a cite for the story? I'm not trying to be snarky. Medieval attitudes on reproduction are a major area of research for me. I know of other cases of adultry where is was politically expedient to overlook the women's actions that didn't involve jumping through medical hoops. I'm somewhat more willing to buy a politcal explanation than one of ignorance but would like to know the details.
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  #28  
Old 19 August 2009, 02:56 PM
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In the unofficial medical terms list this sort of thing is known as "looking for 3 wise men"

If it happened on holiday, maybe alcohol was involved? Why on earth claim it was the swimming pool scenario rather than sex following a spiked drink (or maybe the girl is also hiding the fact she drinks?)

(Sadly don't seem able to see The Sun website from work)
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  #29  
Old 19 August 2009, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by llewtrah View Post
If it happened on holiday, maybe alcohol was involved? Why on earth claim it was the swimming pool scenario rather than sex following a spiked drink (or maybe the girl is also hiding the fact she drinks?)
Or to maintain the fiction that the girl is a virgin.
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  #30  
Old 19 August 2009, 08:07 PM
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OK, it was the 1'500s, in a time when no one really knew how humans are conceived, but the "sperm in the swimming pool" excuse is just as believable.
If no one really knew how humans were conceived, why was she charged with adultery?

I'm reasonably sure selective breeding of animals was well established by the 1500's.

BB "I knew by the time I was 15" &S
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  #31  
Old 19 August 2009, 08:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Belt and Socks View Post
If no one really knew how humans were conceived, why was she charged with adultery?

I'm reasonably sure selective breeding of animals was well established by the 1500's.
Even earlier in fact - there's a suggestion of it in Biblical times (breeding spotted sheep).
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  #32  
Old 19 August 2009, 08:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by llewtrah View Post
Even earlier in fact - there's a suggestion of it in Biblical times (breeding spotted sheep).
Part of the evidence of Christ's divinity was the fact that he was the result of a virgin birth, which was considered a miricle. So they apparently knew that then as well.

Matthew 1:23
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"Behold, the virgin shall be with child and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel," which means "God is with us."
Luke 1:34
Quote:
But Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?"
Even if you were to dismiss the contents of the new testiment as fiction, these two passages indicate a rough knowledge of the machanics of conception at the time of the writing which was prior to 1500. IIRC, they are dated to close to, if not before AD300.
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  #33  
Old 19 August 2009, 08:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DemonWolf View Post
Even if you were to dismiss the contents of the new testiment as fiction, these two passages indicate a rough knowledge of the machanics of conception at the time of the writing which was prior to 1500. IIRC, they are dated to close to, if not before AD300.
Add to that there was a Roman emperor's wife (I forget who) renowned for having affairs, but only when she was already pregnant by her husband. So there was evidently an understanding of cause and effect (sex leads to babies).

(At least I think she was the emperor's wife, I can't remember which book i read it in)
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  #34  
Old 19 August 2009, 09:20 PM
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I would imagine that we would have figured out "sex = babies" pretty early on after the evolution of somewhat more sophisticated brains, even if the exact mechanism was unknown. (I've heard interesting theories of Greek philosophers, including the idea that every woman has a dozen teeny, tiny [but fully-formed] babies inside her, and all those female teeny, tiny babies have even teenier, tinier babies inside them, and on and on forever. Which is sort of creepy, actually.)
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  #35  
Old 20 August 2009, 02:40 AM
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You don't have to look so far afield for medieval reproductive knowledge. Look up the Trotula.
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  #36  
Old 20 August 2009, 05:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beejtronic View Post
I would imagine that we would have figured out "sex = babies" pretty early on after the evolution of somewhat more sophisticated brains, even if the exact mechanism was unknown. (I've heard interesting theories of Greek philosophers, including the idea that every woman has a dozen teeny, tiny [but fully-formed] babies inside her, and all those female teeny, tiny babies have even teenier, tinier babies inside them, and on and on forever. Which is sort of creepy, actually.)

That is preformation but the version I heard was where they thought the sperm contained a tiny fully formed person, and inside that one there were tiny sperm with tiny little people, and so on, with the female only being needed to incubate them. Of course the problem with that is where does the other gender come from?
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  #37  
Old 20 August 2009, 10:49 AM
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The story I quote is from Louis Pauwels and Guy Breton's Histoires magiques de l'Histoire de France, a rather serious and well-researched , but pretty entertaining book about all kinds of strange stories - especially how people dealt with things they didn't understand or believed were supernatural.

While the book's a bit Fortian in its inspiration, not once do the authors try and sell you facts that have no solid historical background, and they see as their duty to expose legends, rumours and fallacies.

There are very interesting things about mass hysteria like the Arras witch hunt or the "possessed" nuns of Loudun, short bios of swindlers, alchemists, prophets and would-be wizards like "Dr." Mesmer, Cagliostro, Nostradamus or Nicholas Flamel, famous cases that remain unsolved like the Beast of Gévaudan killings, the hidden treasure of Neauphle-le-Château, etc.

The case of the self-impregnating lady was a part of a chapter on how people understood human conception over the centuries. Of course, everyone was quite aware that babies came from having sex (that's why she was accused of adultery), but no one could explain what exactly happened (hence the "human seed brought in by the wind"-defense - which is not unlike the Polish girl's tall story in the OP).

I should find the book again to give you names, places and dates, but I'm not at home right now - and it wouldn't help much.

According to Pauwels and Breton, even the invention of the microscope and the discovery of spermatozoids didn't help much. At first, XVIIIth century scientists believed they were actual human embryos, which brought them to the false conclusion that only the father gave life, the mother being a kind of breeding machine.

Last edited by Cyrano; 20 August 2009 at 11:00 AM.
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  #38  
Old 20 August 2009, 06:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xia View Post
That is preformation but the version I heard was where they thought the sperm contained a tiny fully formed person, and inside that one there were tiny sperm with tiny little people, and so on, with the female only being needed to incubate them. Of course the problem with that is where does the other gender come from?
Yeah, I've heard that, too. Complete with creepy picture of a small man balled up in the head of a sperm. Although, obviously, this theory would have to have come after the discovery of individual sperm.
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  #39  
Old 20 August 2009, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beejtronic View Post
Yeah, I've heard that, too. Complete with creepy picture of a small man balled up in the head of a sperm. Although, obviously, this theory would have to have come after the discovery of individual sperm.
The homunculus theory of sperm was formulated by Nicolas Hartsoeker, a contemporary of Leeuwenhoek, who may have been the first to microscopically observe sperm (or it may have been Leeuwenhoek; they disputed the priority of the discovery).

Nick
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  #40  
Old 26 August 2009, 08:45 AM
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I work in a swimming pool type place and between the chlorine and ozone and how quickly sperm die, no way in hell she got pregnant in the pool.
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