Emasculation of a human male is the removal of both the penis and the testicles, the external male sex organs. Depending on the context, this may be seen as consensual body modification, or non-consensual genital mutilation.
The word also has other meanings which are more commonly used. See below.
Genital modification and mutilation
- For removal of the penis alone, see penis removal.
- For removal of the testicles alone, see castration.
In ancient China, emasculation was performed as a punishment up until the Sui Dynasty and Tang Dynasty. Additionally, some men underwent the procedure as means of becoming employed as an imperial servant or bureaucrat.  In English, the word eunuch is generally used to refer to these Chinese people who underwent emasculation, and they are often referred to as having been "castrated" rather than "emasculated". As of the Qing Dynasty, emasculation was still performed in China. In the 19th century, the rebel Yaqub Beg and all of his sons and grandsons were punished by being emasculated and enslaved. The last Imperial eunuch was Sun Yaoting, who died in 1996. For more information on emasculation in China, see Castration#China.
The ancient Vietnamese adopted China's practice of emasculation and the use of eunuchs as servants and slaves for the monarchy. The procedure was reportedly very painful as both the testicles and penis were removed. In 1838, the Emperor of Vietnam made a law that said only adult men of high social standing could be emasculated. In the end, most eunuchs ended up being men who had been born with genital abnormalities and then handed over to the authorities. During the late 19th century, the French used the existence of eunuchs in Vietnam to degrade the Vietnamese. For more information on emasculation in Vietnam, see Castration#Vietnam.
- The Middle East and Africa
In the modern day
In the Bible
In the Old Testament:
“No one whose testicles are crushed or whose male organ is cut off shall enter the assembly of the LORD.
- ~ Deuteronomy 23:1 (ESV)
- ("shall not enter the assembly of the Lord," Explained by the Rabbis to mean that he cannot marry a daughter of Israel)
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By extension, the word emasculation has also come to mean rendering a male less masculine, including by humiliation. It can also mean to deprive anything of vigour or effectiveness. This figurative usage has become more common than the literal meaning. For example: "William Lewis Hughes voted for Folkestone’s amendment to Curwen’s emasculated reform bill, 12 June 1809..."
- Bellamy 1979, pp. 202–204
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- Davis, Simon. ""I Still Unload": This Man Is a "Nullo" Who Removed His Penis and Balls". Gawker.
- Shulhan Arukh, Eben ha-Ezer 5:1
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- Hedhly A. et al. Flower emasculation accelerates ovule degeneration and reduces fruit set in sweet cherry. Scientia Horticulturae Vol.119, No.4, 17 February 2009, Pp 455–457
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