I will have you know this is not a frivolous blog. We are not always about dancing sheep and lace. Oh, no.
Today, we're not only going to have an ancient history lesson, we're going to have a re-enactment. And you can help!
The Story of Empress Messalina
Valeria Messalina was the wife of Claudius, Emperor of Rome (ruled 41-54 A.D.). Unlike such female monarchs as Queen Victoria and Empress Maria Theresa, Messalina has not gone down in history as a model of royal domesticity. Instead, she is remembered as possibly the greatest slut ever to rumple the bedsheets.
The Roman historians Tacitus and Suetonius both describe her as a galloping nymphomaniac with a mercurial temper. If they are to believed, she did the horizontal bop with a fair cross-section of the male population, right under her doting husband's nose. When a potential lover denied her, or a past lover ceased to please her, she was not above mainpulating Claudius into having them executed.
This went on merrily for some quite time until she made the mistake of 1) plotting to have Claudius killed while he was out of town and 2) getting married (in public) to somebody else while this was supposed to be happening. Naughty, naughty.
Claudius, needless to say, was dreadfully annoyed. He had Messalina's co-conspirators executed, and ordered her to commit suicide. She couldn't bring herself to do it, so a helpful tribune stepped in and finished her off.
And that was the end of that.
The most notorious and picturesque of Messalina's endeavors, which is not mentioned in either Suetonius or Tacitus,* was her all-night schtupping contest against Scylla, Rome's chief prostitute. The challenge was to see who could take on the most men in a single night.
As dawn broke, Scylla gave up with the score tied at 25 to 25. Messalina, so it is said, kept on going well into the morning just for the ducks of it.
What Does This Have to Do with the Smackdown?
I'm so glad you asked. I thought it would be a hoot to stage a Messalina vs. Scylla re-match. However, as the two original participants are not available, I've secured stand-ins from the world of entertainment to take their places.
May I present, as the Empress Messalina:
and as Scylla, Queen of the Prostitutes:
Thel, the mom from The Family Circus
One vote equals one boink. Contest ends tomorrow noon.
*I think it's in Pliny, but I don't have a copy and couldn't find on online confirmation. You classicists, help me out if you can.