Of their Venery.
*The Persians exceed most Countreys in Wantoness and venerial Exercises: for besides their great number of Wines, they are very much inclin'd to variety of Women, and in all their Cities, except Ardebil, are kept publick Brothel-houses, under the Protection of the Magistrates: for which Priviledge the Cabeh, or Strumpets, pay great Tribute.
The present Persians never keep any great Feasts; nay, the King himself at Court seldom Entertains foreign Ambassadors; yet divers Ladies of Pleasure always attend there, which are expert in Dancing, Singing, and the like. But in Ardebil, it being a Consecrated Place, none of their Debaucheries are permitted, by special Order from Schach Abbas.
A Master of a Feast always Presents his Guests with several sorts of Liquor, and then such Wo∣men efpecially as they best like; whereupon those that please retire into a private Chamber fit∣ted for that purpose; from whence after most in∣ward Embraces, they come forth without the least bashfulness, the Man to his Place, and the Woman falls to Dancing.
This Custom of providing Women at a great Feast is very ancient amongst the Persians: for long since when the Persian Ambassadors were highly Entertain'd by Anuntas, King of Macedonia, they also desir'd to have Women, saying. It is a Custom amongst us Persians, when we make great Feasts, to bring in such, to the heightning md compleating our Pleasures; as is at large describ'd by Herodotus.
King Sefi kept several of these Women for his Recreation; and Curtius tells us, that Darius car∣ry'd three hundred and sixty Concubines along with him in his Progresses and Travels, which were all Cloth'd in Royal Attire.
*But that which is worse, they are extreamly ad∣dicted to the horrid Sin of Sodomy, which Herodo∣tus affirms they learn'd from the Greeks; but that seems an unjust Imputation, because the Persians were guilty of the same before they had any Con∣verse with the Greeks.
Della Valle tells us, that at Cambru there are ma∣ny Mahumetan Youths, which from their Girdles upward, are Cloth'd like Men, and from their Wastes downward, like Women, and go up and down, the Streets inviting to this Abomination. But 'tis no wonder they give themselves over to this kind of Sin, since their Prophet Mahomet did not a little encourage them therein: Nay, they are instructed, that all carnal Delights whatsoever will be the greatest and chiefest Enjoyment in the other World by which means this Religion is the more follow'd.