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|Look up emasculation in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
Emasculation is the removal of the penis and the testicles, the external male sex organs. Removal of the testicles alone is termed castration. Emasculation was a form of punishment in Medieval Europe and sometimes formed part of the process of being hanged, drawn and quartered.
By extension, the word has also come to mean to render a male less of a man, or to make a male feel less of a man by humiliation. This metaphorical usage of the word is much more common than the application of its literal meaning. It can also mean the reduction or removal of force behind a statute or legislation, for example, "the Triennial Act was emasculated by the Cavalier Parliament".
The removal of male (pollen) parts of a plant, largely for controlled pollination and breeding purposes, is also called emasculation.
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