O me! these pangs and paroxysms of love,
Riving my heart, keen as a torturer's wheel
. . .
She looks, methinks, more youthful than she did,
More gentle-loving, and more sweet by far.
Her very airs, her petulant, saucy ways,
They do but make me love her, love her more.
Aristophanes, The Lysistrata, l. 845-888
First of all: what is a chastity belt?
Well, my dictionary say: "chastity belt, closable belt to save the wives chastity in absence of her husband (15.-19. century)."
We may define a chastity belt as a mechanical device wich prevents its wearer from having sexual intercourse.
Who invented them?
There are attempts of mechanically prevent people from having sexual intercourse in ancient time. The oldest method seems to be the infibulation: in the case of the infibulation, the foreskin respectively the great labia are sewed up except for a small hole for urination (and menstrual blood). This means that erection becomes impossible, respectively nothing can enter the vagina. The infibulation of men is rather outdated: it was used mostly on slaves, but also on ancient olympic athlets, for not being irritated by something else then their sport. It is sometimes conjectured that circumcision was primarly invented not to prevent phimose, but to make infibulation impossible (in recent days, of course, the only reason why circumcision is so popular in the United States, is, that it is a possibility for physicians to earn money).
There exists also a so-called female circumcision, meaning the cutting off of the small labia and the clitoris. This is often combined with circumcision. It is mainly done in african and some asian country; mostly in islamic countries, though it is a preislamic, pagan custom and has nothing to do with Islam. It is also common among koptian christs in africa and in closed communities of immigrants in America and Europa, although it is nearly everywhere forbidden by law. The name 'circumcisian' is very misleading, since this should be better called castration. The hole left by the circumcision is usually enlarged in a very painful way during the first sexual intercourse, and must be removed before the birth of a child.
The common myth about the first occurance of chastity belts in the strict meaning is that the chastity belts where used by crusades, knights travelling to free Jerusalem and the holy land, while their wives rested in their castles locked in a chastity belt. This seem hardly plausible, since those first chastity belts were very uncomfortable, and it seems very unlikly that they could be worn long periods. It should be also mentioned that one the first crusade, there were 300.000 men engaged, 20.000 dying in fights, 20.000 returning home and 260.000 dying of the plague. So the probability of a crusade returning home was very low. Another theory suggests that the belts were used by the women themself to protect them against rapes. Maybe the belts were invented for some kind of (nonconsentual) bdsm play from the beginning: the thing is older than its description. In any case, it seems that the oldest chastety belts are mostly not products of the middle age, but of the renaissance, that means, that chastity belts are an invention of modern times and their belief in machines.
There are some documents usually quoted to proof the early existence of chastity belts, like poems of Guillaume de Machault (the ones dedicated to Agnes of Navarra, the wive of the Comte de Foix)or a book of Guyemer ("Loi"), but these quotes are rather metaphoric and can't be taken literal. The earliest passage I know is in a book "Bellifortis" finished on the 28th august 1405 by Konrad Kyeser von Eichstätt. It has a picture commented "Dies ist ein harteiserner Gürtel florentinischer Frauen, der vorn so geschlossen wird" ("This is a hard iron belt of women of Florence closed like this"). There are some other passages mentioning other italian cities like Rome or Venice or Milano or Bergamo as places where chastity belts were manufacted. The MuseÚ de Cluny in Paris contains a chastity belt wich is said to be worn by Catharina of Medici, married to King Henry the Second (of France) - they lifed in the sixteenth century. And there is a chastity belt in the Collection Pachinger in Linz wich was found in a grave on a skeleton of a young woman of the sixteenth century. So it seems they really have been worn. On the other hand, those belts were very uncomfortable, and it seems hardly plausible that they were worn often for long times. By the way, most stories of that time mentioning chastity belts tell how women managed to get out of the belt or get a second key.
The victorianism added another aspect to the chastity belts. In victorianism, the theory raised that masturbation would be something very condemnable, that masturbation can lead to blindness, madness, sudden death and other not very pleasant diseases. Nowadays, it is proven that masturbation leads absolutly not to any kind of diseases, but is a perfectly normal (and common) kind of sexual behaviour, and in earlier times, before victorianism, no one cared much about masturbation. But during victorianism, physicians discussed much the question how children could be prevented from masturbating, to spare them from blindness, madness, sudden death etc., and they invented some devices for boys and girls to be worn mostly during sleep with the aim to prevent children from masturbating. I heard that even not long ago, chastity-belt-like devices could be found in stores for orthopedic instruments. Also it was, as far as I know, during victorianism, that the first chastity belts for men were invented. In that time, someone invented the term "edozones" for female chastity belts (aidos=sex, zonÚ=belt, should be better "aidozone")
In the twentieth century or earlier, chastity belts were discovered for BDSM-play. I know about two dozend companies producing chastity belts of different quality, and I think there are even more companies I never heard from. Nevertheless, this aspect of history seems to be less well documented. Maybe someone out there wants to write an essay for take his degree or his or her thesis on this subject. As far as I know, the chastity belts for men were first popular in some special part of the gay community and become now popular for Femdom/malesub-relations.
How do they work and look like?
There are different models. The classical version for women consists of a metal belt and a metal band runnig trough the legs with a hole for urination and a hole for defactation. The belt is closed and connected with the band with a lock. There are newer models, consisting of a metal belt, a shield covering the vulva, connected to the belt, and one or two chains attaching the shield with the belt, the chains running over the buttocks, or the chain running between the buttocks, dividing the faces in two parts. The shield has a hole or a slit for urination. Sometimes a second strap covers that hole to prevent masturbation. Sometimes the whole thing has also the possibility to add one or two plugs, entering the anus respectively the vagina, wich can't be removed as long as the belt stays closed.
A cheaper version is not made of metal, but of leather or another cloth material. Those versions usually have no holes for using the toilet, and they can be destroyed with siccsores.
For woman, there are also metal bras wich can be locked, and I saw also a pair of metal tighbangles, chained together so that the woman wearing them was unable to spread her legs.
For men, there are constructions very similar to the standard version of female chastity belts, but mostly with an additionally penis tube, wich can be fixed in the inner side of the belt. There are also kind of penis cages (usually called "cock cages", due to the alliteration, I guess), fixed to a lockable belt or attached with a band going around the testicles, so sparing the chains over the buttocks. Sometimes there is an additional band covering the anus in a manner that defacation is possible, but no intercourse, or that an anal plug can be fixed. Usually, if the penis tube or cage is small enough, masturbation should be impossible; otherwise, masturbation is still possible while wearing the belt, but not sexual intercourse.
A rather different kind of chastity belt, and obviously only for men, consists of two halves of a tube which can be locked together. The inside of the two halves contains spikes. The penis is put between the both halves, and the both halves are locked. Now the spikes make escape impossible, untill the halves are unlocked. Also, any erection becomes painful, so any erection won't last very long. So this kind does not even prevent erection, but also even to be sexuell excited.
And there are also, as in the case of the women, lockable leather underpants.
Another different possibility is to pierce the foreskin and the skin between testicles and anus or the labias and lock both piercing rings together after the piercing is healed.
How long can they be worn? Are they comfortable?
It depends. If it is a leather chastity belt without the possibility of using the toilet, the time you can wear it is of course very limited. If you use a metal belt not made of stainless steel, you will risk to make it rusty or get some skin irritation. So, if you want to wear it for a longer period, you must wear a belt made of stainless steel. There are different reports, but it seems that in most cases stainless steel belts of the high-end type can be worn infinitly without serious problems. Most people find them not perfectly comfortable, but agree that you can get used to them. With a good belt, there should be no hygienical problem. But in any case, before giving away the key and stay locked for month or years or whatever you have in mind, you should test the belt with the key in reach for at least some days.
How long have they be worn?
I think nobody knows. Although lacking personal experience, it seems quite credible that several people wear them for several months. I never heard of anybody wearing it for years, but this should be technically possible.
How secure are they?
Again, it depends on what kind of belt you're in. A leather belt of course is just a kind of seal in the best case: you must destroy it to escape from it. A high-end stainless steel belt with the correct measures cannot be removed without special tools and doesn't allow sexual intercourse (or masturbation) without being removed. That means high security, in terms of escape-safe, but of course on the other hand it means a security risk in cases of accident. The person wearing the belt should always be able to reach the person holding the key, and the key should be always present to the keyholder. And, of course, the key shouldn't be lost, though that could be an exciting phantasy.
If you do not have a high-end belt, or a belt without the correct measures, it will not be escape-safe. In any cases, the keyholder should check wether the beltwearer can escape the belt or not. Also, the keyholder should, of course, check out if the belt comes along with one or two keys or set of keys.
Can they be discovered by third persons?
If you wear wide clothes, this should be no problem. With very tight clothes, they can be noticed. Some brands are better than others, but more or less that is valid for all of them. Security checks, for example on airports, with metall detectors, will detect a chastity belt. The keyholder should unlock the beltwearer before visiting the any physician, and it seems to be recommended also to unlock the beltwearer before visiting a swimming hall, a beach or a sauna. Going to work wearing a chastity belt and wide clothes should be no problem. If you want to be absolutly sure not to become embarrassed by somebody discovering your secrete, become a bank manager or a priest or something else you need to be dressed proper.
Are there more men or more women wearing chastity belts in recent times?
Since there are, as it seems, no statistical investigations, this question is difficult to answer. It also makes some difference if you count all kinds of chastity belts or just the stainless steel ones. All I know about this question are some rumours about numbers about the companies La Ceinture de Chastete and Tollyboy. According to them, it seems that most belts are worn by gay men, were the keyholder is also a man. A smaller number of belts is worn by women, with men as keyholders, and by men with women as keyholders. I never heard about lesbians using chastity belts. According to La Ceinture and Tollyboy, three quarters of all delivered belts are male belts, and the remaining quarter are female belts.
What about ethical aspects?
The orthodox theory of BDSM declares that BDSM demands that BDSM should be a consensual play, that means, that both parts participates volunteerly. That seems to be a little bit self-contradictory: it seems as if one party is saying: "I want you to do something I do not want to do you". One theory to solve this contradiction is that the BDSm is a kind of role-play. For example, one person pretends to be a slave and another person pretends to be a master, but that are just roles they play, nothing they really be. If one party is no longer willing to participate the play, she or he utters a certain word, the so-called safeword, to stop the play. While the play goes on, the submissive role pretends as if she or he wants the play to stop, but only as part of the play. Another theory could be that one person declares one time her or his will to participate at the play, and that free declaration is all what is needed to make the play a consensual, and if the person changes her or his mind, it is legitime to continue the game, since the first declaration is all that is needed. As far as I know, the first view is much more common. Anyway, the idea of a consensual BDSM-play is that it should be fun for all participiants.
Therefore, it is thought to be illegitime to force a person to wear a chastity belt. One could think that non-adult persons are an exception, since they are not fully able to decide their own purposes. But I cannot see how forcing a teenager to wear a chastity belt can be justified: forcing someone to wear a chastity belt is such a rigid intervention in someones intimacy that it cannot be justified by recurration on the parents right of education.
At this passage, I want to point out that the moralical system of the protestantic or katholic church is in many respects arbitrar, that its sexual morals cannot be justified by recurring to ethical principles as the golden rule or the moralical imperative, that education should be based on insight rather than brute force, and that masturbation is neither unhealthy nor unnatural.
So we can assume that the person to wear the belt is willing to wear it. Then there are, according to wich theory of BDSM-play we follow, different possibilities. One possibility is that the Beltwearer and the keyholder make up a special word, and that the keyholder has the due to unlock the beltwearer when the later speaks the word. Another possibiliy is that the beltwearer gives the key to the keyholder volunteerly, and that the keyholder from that point on has the right to do with the key whatever him or her pleases. Furthermore, the beltwearer and the keyholder can agree that the keyholder can command the beltwearer to wear the belt whenever he or she wants to. Also, it should be clear wether or not the keyholder has the right to give the key to a third person or to destroy the key. Some kind of contract can be usefull. You are, of course, free to make up your own kind of game.
Why do people want other people to wear chastity belts, and why do people want to be put in chastity belts?
Different people have different reasons. Some people like to think of themself as being the possession of someone else, and other people like to think of other people as their possessions, and chastity belts do very much enforce the feeling of being the possession of someone else. Also, most people get more excited when they do not have a possibility of getting relief. Other people believe in a theory that sexual activities are sinful. Other people have other reasons. Other people have no reasons at all they can explain. I wrote an essay where I dwell on this question a little longer, but unfortunatly, this essay is written in German, and I feel incapable to translate its subtile thoughts in English.
Wich brands do you recommend?
That depends on what you want to do. If you want the chastity belt just to be a part of a role-play, durating not more than some hours, an afternoon or at least a weekend, and if you do not want to spend much money, one of the many leather chastity belt should do it. If you want to be locked or want to lock your girlfriend in a chastity belt just like the ancient ones, you should buy a chastity belt of Rob Hyams, which will be a little bit expensive (and for women only). If you want a chastity belt to be wearn seriously, you have to buy a stainless steel belt. The most recommended belts in this category are those of Tollyboy and La Ceinture de Chastete, and two newer Companies, Access Denied and Neosteel. The main difference between the first two is that Tollyboy is in England, while La Ceinture is in America. Also, the belts of La Ceinture have locks which can be locked (but not unlocked) without the key, while Tollyboy belts come along with round keys. Both can be combined with plugs, and if you want to buy a female belt, you should buy a shield extension too to prevent masturbation (some users report that this additional band is unnecessairy). Access Denied and Neosteel follow La Ceinture in its design. Neosteel also offers a set to allow you to take the necessairy measurements yourself, and offers a "transvestite chastity belt" (male belt looking like a female).
And there is a belgian belt maker, Walter Goethals, who also makes stainless steel belts, but with an adjustable belt. And a german belt maker, Latowski; but for a Latowski belt, you must apear in person for the measurements.
Another high quality belt is made by Reinholds: it is made of glass fiber and has a rather different design. For this belt, you also have to appear personally (Reinholds reside in Germany).
Instead of a belt, men can also use a BirdCage, wich is attached using the testicles. A similar principle is used by Chastity 2000, a non-belt made of plastic. As far as I know, those testicle-attached advices are not as save as real steal (or glass fiber) belts, but some reports seam to indicate that the belt 2000 solved those problems.
And if you are completly fascinated by the tube with spikes, you should buy a Kali's Teeth Bracelet.
I have listed some addresses of companies selling chastity belts. Most of the vendors (e.g. Access Denied, Neosteel, Reinholds or CB 2000) have their own home pages with additional pictures and descriptions. For more technical details, discussions of the pros and cons of the different belts and advices for doing-itself, you should visit the page of Altairboy.
In any case, a stainless steel belt will cost, depending on wich brand you chose, between $ 300 and $ 600.
I heard it takes some time till a stainless steel belt is delivered.
Yes, because they are handmade (usually custom made), it can take several weeks up to several months until you will get your belt.
What does "ec", "ff", ""cb", "bdsm" or "ktb" mean?
"ec" means "enforced chastity". "ff" means "forced feminisation". "cb" means, obviously, "chastity belt". "bdsm" stands for Bondage/Discipline-Dominance/Submission-Sadism/Masochism. "ktb" means "Kali's Teeth Bracelet". I would recomend not to use these abrivations too often, if you want people to be able to understand you.
I am trapped in a chastity belt against my will. What shall I do?
For example, your parents say: "We will pay for your education, if you are willing to wear a chastity belt", or something like that. In such a case, I think the best solution is to point out that you absolutly have the right to have your own sexuality. You should insist in being released, otherwise you can sue them for bodily injury or something like that (depending on the country you are living in). In many countries, parents are obliged to pay for there children as long as they are no adults or absolving instruction.
The second best option would be to be able to open the belt in a nondestructive way. Most locks can be picked, there are many people doing that for sport, so with some skill it should be possible to become a lock picker (If you wanted to be locked up, because it is a bdsm-thing for you, forget what you were reading, and try to avoid any informations about lock picking or clubs of lock pickers). Another possibility is to buy another lock of the same type, together with the key, and test wether the key matches your lock. Exchange the lock, until you find a matching key.
The third best way is to destroy the belt. Depending on which type of belt you are wearing, you should go to a doctor instead of a locksmith. Be not embarrased: in any case, he or she is obliged to his or her pledge secrecy. And do not be afraid: there is no belt wich cannot be broken.
Chastity Belt Main Page