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Fellatio (also known as fellation, and in slang as blowjob, BJ, giving head, or sucking off) is an
oral sex Oral sex, sometimes referred to as oral intercourse, is sexual activity Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in which humans experience and express their sexuality Human sexuality is ...
act involving a person stimulating the
penis A penis (plural ''penises'' or ''penes'' () is the primary sexual organ that male animals use to inseminate females (or hermaphrodites) during Copulation (zoology), copulation. Such organs occur in many animals, both #Vertebrates, vertebrate ...

penis
of another person by using the
mouth In animal anatomy Anatomy (Greek ''anatomē'', 'dissection') is the branch of biology concerned with the study of the structure of organisms and their parts. Anatomy is a branch of natural science which deals with the structural organization ...

mouth
,
throat In vertebrate anatomy, the throat is the front part of the neck, internally positioned in front of the vertebra, vertebrae. It contains the Human pharynx, pharynx and larynx. An important section of it is the epiglottis, separating the esophagus f ...

throat
, or both. Oral stimulation of the
scrotum The scrotum or scrotal sac is an Anatomy, anatomical male reproductive structure located at the base of the penis that consists of a suspended dual-chambered sac of skin and smooth muscle. It is present in most terrestrial male mammals. The scr ...

scrotum
may also be termed ''fellatio'', or colloquially as ''
teabagging Teabagging is a slang term for the Human sexual activity, sexual act of a man placing their scrotum in the mouth of their sexual partner for sexual pleasure, or onto the face or head of another person, sometimes as a comedic device. The name of t ...
.'' If fellatio is performed on oneself, the act is called
autofellatio Autofellatio is the act of Oral sex, oral stimulation of one's own human penis, penis as a form of masturbation. Only a limited number of males are physically capable of performing autofellatio.Savage, Dan. Savage Love', page 242 (Plume 1998). ...

autofellatio
. Fellatio can be sexually arousing for both participants, and may lead to
orgasm Orgasm (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approxim ...

orgasm
for the partner being fellated. It may be performed by a
sexual partner Sexual partners are people who engage in sexual activity Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in which humans experience and express their sexuality Human sexuality is the way people ...
as
foreplay Foreplay is a set of emotionally and physically intimate acts between two or more people meant to create sexual arousal Sexual arousal (also sexual excitement) is typically the arousal Arousal is the physiological and psychological ...
before other sexual activities, such as
vaginal In mammal Mammals (from Latin language, Latin , 'breast') are a group of vertebrate animals constituting the class (biology), class Mammalia (), and characterized by the presence of mammary glands which in Female#Mammalian female, femal ...

vaginal
or
anal Anal may refer to: Related to the anus *related to the anus of animals ** Anal fin, in fish anatomy ** Anal vein, in insect anatomy ** Anal scale, in reptile anatomy *related to the human anus ** Anal sex, a type of sexual activity involving sti ...
intercourse, or as an
erotic Eroticism () is a quality that causes sexual feelings, as well as a philosophical contemplation concerning the aesthetic Aesthetics, or esthetics (), is a branch of philosophy that deals with the nature of beauty and taste (sociology), tas ...
and of its own. Fellatio creates a risk of contracting
sexually transmitted infection Sexually transmitted infections (STIs), also referred to as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and the older term venereal disease, are infections that are Transmission (medicine), spread by Human sexual activity, sexual activity, especial ...

sexually transmitted infection
s (STIs), but the risk is significantly lower than that of vaginal or anal sex, especially for
HIV The human immunodeficiency viruses (HIV) are two species of ''Lentivirus ''Lentivirus'' is a genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, inc ...

HIV
transmission. Most countries do not have laws banning the practice of fellatio, though some cultures may consider it
taboo A taboo is an implicit prohibition on something (usually against an utterance or behavior) based on a cultural sense that it is excessively repulsive or, perhaps, too sacred for ordinary people.''Encyclopædia Britannica Online''.Taboo. Encyclop ...

taboo
. People may also refrain from engaging in fellatio due to personal preference, negative feelings, or
sexual inhibition A sexual inhibition is a conscious or subconscious constraint or curtailment by a person of behavior relating to specific sexual matters or practices, a discussion of sexual matters or viewing certain sexual material. To some extent such inhibition ...
s. Commonly, people do not view oral sex as affecting the
virginity Virginity is the state of a person who has never engaged in sexual intercourse Sexual intercourse (or coitus or copulation) is a sexual activity Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in ...
of either partner, though opinions on the matter vary.Se
here
an
47-49
for male virginity, how gay and lesbian individuals define virginity loss, and for how the majority of researchers and heterosexuals define virginity loss/"technical virginity" by whether or not a person has engaged in vaginal sex.


Etymology

The
English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has eventually become the World language, leading lan ...

English
noun ''fellatio'' comes from the
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republic, it became ...

Latin
', the past
participle In linguistics, a participle () (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through t ...
of the verb ', meaning to suck. In ''fellatio'' the ''-us'' is replaced by the ''-io'' while the declension stem ends in ''-ion-'', which gives the suffix the form ''-ion'' (cf. French ''fellation''). The ''-io''(''n'') ending is used in English to create nouns from Latin
adjective In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most langu ...
s and it can indicate a state or action wherein the Latin verb is being, or has been, performed. Further English words have been created based on the same Latin root. A person who performs fellatio upon another (i.e. who ''fellates'',) may be termed a ''fellator.'' Latin's gender based declension means this word may be restricted by some English speakers to describing a male. The equivalent term for a female is ''fellatrix''.


Practice


General

Fellatio can be sexually arousing for both participants, and males who receive fellatio commonly experience
orgasm Orgasm (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approxim ...

orgasm
and
ejaculation Ejaculation is the discharge of semen Semen, also known as seminal fluid, is an organic fluid created to contain spermatozoon, spermatozoa. It is secreted by the gonads (sexual glands) and other sexual organs of male or hermaphrodite, her ...

ejaculation
of
semen Semen, also known as seminal fluid, is an organic fluid created to contain spermatozoon, spermatozoa. It is secreted by the gonads (sexual glands) and other sexual organs of male or hermaphrodite, hermaphroditic animals and can fertilization, f ...

semen
during the act. People may use fellatio as
foreplay Foreplay is a set of emotionally and physically intimate acts between two or more people meant to create sexual arousal Sexual arousal (also sexual excitement) is typically the arousal Arousal is the physiological and psychological ...
to sexually arouse their
sex partner Sexual partners are people who engage in Human sexual activity, sexual activity together. The sexual partners may be in a committed relationship, either on an exclusive basis or not, or engage in the sexual activity on a Casual sex, casual basis ...
before
vaginal In mammal Mammals (from Latin language, Latin , 'breast') are a group of vertebrate animals constituting the class (biology), class Mammalia (), and characterized by the presence of mammary glands which in Female#Mammalian female, femal ...

vaginal
or
anal Anal may refer to: Related to the anus *related to the anus of animals ** Anal fin, in fish anatomy ** Anal vein, in insect anatomy ** Anal scale, in reptile anatomy *related to the human anus ** Anal sex, a type of sexual activity involving sti ...
intercourse, or other
sexual activity Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in which humans experience and express their sexuality Human sexuality is the way people experience and express themselves sexually. This involves bio ...
, or they may use it as an
erotic Eroticism () is a quality that causes sexual feelings, as well as a philosophical contemplation concerning the aesthetic Aesthetics, or esthetics (), is a branch of philosophy that deals with the nature of beauty and taste (sociology), tas ...
and in its own right. The sex partner may be of either sex. When the penis is
thrust Thrust is a reaction Reaction may refer to a process or to a response to an action, event, or exposure: Physics and chemistry *Chemical reaction A chemical reaction is a process that leads to the IUPAC nomenclature for organic transforma ...

thrust
into someone's mouth, it may be called '' irrumatio'', though the term is rarely used. The essential aspect of fellatio is oral stimulation of the penis through some combination of sucking, use of the tongue and lips, and movement of the mouth. One method is the sex partner taking the penis into the mouth and moving smoothly up and down the penis to a rhythm while being careful to avoid contact with the teeth. Fellatio may also include the oral stimulation of the scrotum, whether licking, sucking or taking the entire scrotum into the mouth. During the act, semen may be ejaculated into the partner's mouth. It is difficult for some people to perform fellatio due to their sensitivities to the natural
gag reflex The pharyngeal reflex or gag reflex is a reflex In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular int ...
. Different people have different sensitivities to the reflex, but some people learn to suppress the reflex. How much of the penis a partner can take into their mouth also depends on the size and length of the penis, and they most commonly only take the end of the penis into their mouth. It is physically possible for men with sufficient flexibility, penis size, or both, to perform fellatio on themselves as a form of
masturbation Masturbation ( ) is the sexual stimulation Sexual stimulation is any stimulus (including bodily contact) that leads to, enhances and maintains sexual arousal, and may lead to orgasm Orgasm (from Ancient Greek, Greek ὀργασμός ' ...

masturbation
, in an act called
autofellatio Autofellatio is the act of Oral sex, oral stimulation of one's own human penis, penis as a form of masturbation. Only a limited number of males are physically capable of performing autofellatio.Savage, Dan. Savage Love', page 242 (Plume 1998). ...

autofellatio
. However, few men possess sufficient flexibility and penis length to safely perform the necessary
frontbend A frontbend is a contortion position where the body is curved forward at the hips and Vertebral column, spine. In an extreme frontbend, some contortionists can place the backs of their knees behind their shoulders. See also *Paschimottanasana (seat ...
.


Deposition of semen

During fellatio, a partner may ingest semen from the penis.
Nancy Friday Nancy Colbert Friday (August 27, 1933 – November 5, 2017) was an American author who wrote on the topics of female sexuality and liberation. Her writings argue that women have often been reared under an ideal of womanhood, which was outdated and ...
's book, ''Men in Love – Men's Sexual Fantasies: The Triumph of Love over Rage'' (1982), suggests that swallowing semen is high on a man's intimacy scale. As late as 1976, some doctors were advising women in the eighth and ninth months of pregnancy not to swallow semen lest it induce premature labor, though it is now known to be safe. The male whose
penis A penis (plural ''penises'' or ''penes'' () is the primary sexual organ that male animals use to inseminate females (or hermaphrodites) during Copulation (zoology), copulation. Such organs occur in many animals, both #Vertebrates, vertebrate ...

penis
is being stimulated during fellatio typically receives
sexual arousal Sexual arousal (also sexual excitement) describes the physiological Physiology (; ) is the scientific Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity or awareness, of someone ...
from the act; once the prerequisite level of sexual stimulation has been achieved, and
ejaculation Ejaculation is the discharge of semen Semen, also known as seminal fluid, is an organic fluid created to contain spermatozoon, spermatozoa. It is secreted by the gonads (sexual glands) and other sexual organs of male or hermaphrodite, her ...

ejaculation
becomes imminent, the semen discharged may be deposited onto his partner. The male may position his penis prior to ejaculation so that semen will be deposited onto his partner's face (known as a "
facial A facial is a family of skin care treatments for the face The face is the front of an animal's head that features the eyes Eyes are organs An organ is a group of tissues with similar functions. Plant life and animal life rely on ma ...
"), or other body part such as their neck, chest or breast.


Deep-throating

Deep-throating is a sexual act in which a person takes a partner's entire penis into the
mouth In animal anatomy Anatomy (Greek ''anatomē'', 'dissection') is the branch of biology concerned with the study of the structure of organisms and their parts. Anatomy is a branch of natural science which deals with the structural organization ...

mouth
and throat. The technique and term became popularized by the 1972
pornographic Pornography (often shortened to porn) is the portrayal of sexual subject matter for the exclusive purpose of sexual arousal Sexual arousal (also sexual excitement) is typically the arousal Arousal is the physiological and psychologic ...
film ''Deep Throat''. Generally, the person receiving fellatio is in control. For deep-throating, the penis has to be long enough so that it can reach the back of the giver's throat. Deep-throating can be difficult, due to the natural
gag reflex The pharyngeal reflex or gag reflex is a reflex In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular int ...
triggered when the
soft palate The soft palate (also known as the velum, palatal velum, or muscular palate) is, in mammal Mammals (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was origin ...
is touched. People have different sensitivities to this reflex, and with practice, some people learn to suppress it. Deep-throating leads to an entirely different kind of oral stimulation in comparison to regular fellatio: the tongue is immobilized during deep-throating and sucking becomes impossible; the
glans penis The glans penis, commonly referred to as the glans, is a structure at the distal Standard anatomical terms of location deal unambiguously with the anatomy of animals, including humans. Terms used generally derive from Latin or Greek language ...

glans penis
can be intensely stimulated by the tightness of the
pharynx The pharynx (plural: pharynges) is the part of the throat behind the human mouth, mouth and nasal cavity, and above the esophagus and trachea – the tubes going down to the stomach and the lungs. It is found in vertebrates and invertebrates, thou ...

pharynx
.


Other aspects

The man receiving fellatio receives direct sexual stimulation, while his partner may derive satisfaction from giving him pleasure. Giving and receiving fellatio may happen simultaneously in sex positions like 69 and
daisy chain Daisy chain may refer to: * Daisy chain, a garland created from daisy flowers * Daisy chain (climbing), a type of strap * Daisy chain (electrical engineering), a wiring scheme * Daisy chain (fishing), a type of fishing lure * Daisy chain (knot), or ...
. Fellatio is sometimes practiced when penile penetration would create a physical difficulty for a sex partner. For example, it may be practiced during pregnancy instead of vaginal intercourse by couples wishing to engage in intimate sexual activity while avoiding the difficulty of vaginal intercourse during later stages of pregnancy. There may be other reasons why a woman may not wish to have vaginal intercourse, such as apprehension of losing her virginity or of becoming pregnant, or she may be
menstruating The menstrual cycle is a series of natural changes in hormone A hormone (from the Greek participle , "setting in motion") is any member of a class of signaling molecules in multicellular organisms, that are transported to distant organs to r ...
.


Health aspects


Sexually transmitted infections

Chlamydia Chlamydia, or more specifically a chlamydia infection, is a sexually transmitted infection caused by the bacterium '' Chlamydia trachomatis''. Most people who are infected have no symptoms. When symptoms do appear it can be several weeks after ...
,
human papillomavirus Human papillomavirus infection (HPV infection) is an infection An infection is the invasion of an organism's body tissues by disease-causing agents, their multiplication, and the reaction of host A host is a person responsible for g ...
(HPV),
gonorrhea Gonorrhea, colloquially known as the clap, is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by the bacterium ''Neisseria gonorrhoeae''. Infection may involve the genitals, mouth, or rectum. Infected men may experience Dysuria, pain or burning ...
,
herpes Herpes simplex is a viral infection A viral disease (or viral infection) occurs when an organism's body is invaded by pathogen In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy ...
,
hepatitis Hepatitis is inflammation Inflammation (from la, inflammatio) is part of the complex biological response of body tissues to harmful stimuli, such as pathogen In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living or ...

hepatitis
(multiple strains), and other
sexually transmitted infections Sexually transmitted infections (STIs), also referred to as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), are infection An infection is the invasion of an organism's body Tissue (biology), tissues by Pathogen, disease-causing agents, their multipl ...
(STIs/STDs) can be transmitted through oral sex. Also se
Fact Sheet
/ref> Any sexual exchange of bodily fluids with a person infected with
HIV The human immunodeficiency viruses (HIV) are two species of ''Lentivirus ''Lentivirus'' is a genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, inc ...

HIV
, the virus that causes
AIDS Human immunodeficiency virus infection and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) is a spectrum of conditions caused by infection An infection is the invasion of an organism's body by , their multiplication, and the reaction of ...
, poses a risk of infection. Risk of STI infection, however, is generally considered significantly lower for oral sex than for vaginal or anal sex, with HIV transmission considered the lowest risk with regard to oral sex. There is an increased risk of STI transmission if the receiving partner has wounds on his genitals, or if the giving partner has wounds or open sores on or in his or her mouth, or bleeding gums. Brushing the teeth, flossing, or undergoing dental work soon before or after giving fellatio can also increase the risk of transmission, because all of these activities can cause small scratches in the lining of the mouth. These wounds, even when they are
microscopic The microscopic scale (from , ''mikrós'', "small" and σκοπέω, ''skopéō'' "look") is the scale of objects and events smaller than those that can easily be seen by the naked eye Naked eye, also called bare eye or unaided eye, is the pr ...
, increase the chances of contracting STIs that can be transmitted orally under these conditions. Such contact can also lead to more mundane infections from common
bacteria Bacteria (; common noun bacteria, singular bacterium) are ubiquitous, mostly free-living organisms often consisting of one Cell (biology), biological cell. They constitute a large domain (biology), domain of prokaryotic microorganisms. Typ ...

bacteria
and
virus A virus is a submicroscopic infectious agent In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecu ...

virus
es found in, around and secreted from the genital regions. Because of the aforementioned factors, medical sources advise the use of
condom A condom is a sheath-shaped barrier device used during sexual intercourse Sexual intercourse (or coitus or copulation) is a sexual activity Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in ...

condom
s or other effective barrier methods when performing or receiving fellatio with a partner whose STI status is unknown.


HPV and oral cancer link

Links have been reported between oral sex and
oral cancer Oral cancer, also known as mouth cancer, is cancer Cancer is a group of diseases involving abnormal cell growth with the potential to invade or spread to other parts of the body. These contrast with benign tumor A benign tumor is a ma ...
with HPV-infected people. A 2005 research study suggested that performing unprotected oral sex on a person infected with HPV might increase the risk of oral cancer. The study found that 36 percent of the cancer patients had HPV compared to only 1 percent of the healthy control group. A 2007 study suggested a
correlation In statistics Statistics is the discipline that concerns the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation, and presentation of data Data (; ) are individual facts, statistics, or items of information, often numeric. In a m ...

correlation
between oral sex and
throat cancer Head and neck cancer develops from tissues in the lip and oral cavity (mouth), larynx The larynx (), commonly called the voice box, is an organ Organ may refer to: Biology * Organ (anatomy) An organ is a group of Tissue (biology), tiss ...
. It is believed that this is due to the transmission of HPV, a virus that has been implicated in the majority of cervical cancers and which has been detected in throat cancer tissue in numerous studies. The study concludes that people who had one to five oral sex partners in their lifetime had approximately a doubled risk of throat cancer compared with those who never engaged in this activity and those with more than five oral sex partners had a 250 percent increased risk.


Pregnancy and semen exposure

Fellatio cannot result in
pregnancy Pregnancy, also known as gestation, is the time during which one or more offspring In biology, offspring are the young creation of living organisms, produced either by a Asexual reproduction, single organism or, in the case of sexual repr ...

pregnancy
, as there is no way for ingested
sperm Sperm is the male reproductive Cell (biology), cell, or gamete, in anisogamous forms of sexual reproduction (forms in which there is a larger, female reproductive cell and a smaller, male one). Animals produce motile sperm with a tail known as ...

sperm
to reach the
uterus The uterus (from Latin "uterus", plural ''uteri'') or womb () is the main female hormone-responsive, sex organ, secondary sex organ of the reproductive system in humans and most other mammals. Things occurring in the uterus are described with t ...

uterus
and
fallopian tube The Fallopian tubes, also known as uterine tubes, salpinges (singular salpinx), or oviducts, are tubes that stretch from the ovaries The ovary is an organ found in the female reproductive system 400px, 1. Labia_majora.html"_;"title="V ...

fallopian tube
s to fertilize an
egg An egg is the organic vessel containing the in which an develops until it can survive on its own, at which point the animal hatches. An egg results from of an . Most s, (excluding s), and lay eggs, although some, such as s, do not. eg ...

egg
. At any rate, acids in the stomach and
digestive enzyme Digestive may refer to: Biology *Digestion Digestion is the breakdown of large insoluble food Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional Nutrition is the biochemical Biochemistry or biological chemistry, is the study of c ...
s in the
digestive tract The gastrointestinal tract (GI tract, digestive tract, alimentary canal) is the tract or passageway of the digestive system that leads from the mouth to the anus. The GI tract contains all the major organ (biology), organs of the digestive syst ...
break down and kill spermatozoa. Clinical research has tentatively linked fellatio with immune modulation, indicating it may reduce the chance of complications during pregnancy. The potentially fatal complication
pre-eclampsia Pre-eclampsia is a disorder of pregnancy Pregnancy, also known as gestation, is the time during which one or more offspring In biology, offspring are the young creation of living organisms, produced either by a Asexual reproduction, si ...
was observed to occur less in women who regularly engaged in fellatio, with those who also ingested their partner's
semen Semen, also known as seminal fluid, is an organic fluid created to contain spermatozoon, spermatozoa. It is secreted by the gonads (sexual glands) and other sexual organs of male or hermaphrodite, hermaphroditic animals and can fertilization, f ...

semen
being at the least risk. The results were consistent with the fact that semen contains , the exchange of which between partners having a causal reduction in risk of pre-eclampsia caused by an
immunological Immunology is a branch of biology that covers the study of immune systems in all organisms. Immunology charts, measures, and contextualizes the Physiology, physiological functioning of the immune system in states of both health and diseases; malf ...
reaction. It is worth noting that fellatio is not the only viable mechanism for the transmission of TGF-β1.


Cultural views


Virginity

Oral sex is commonly used as a means of preserving
virginity Virginity is the state of a person who has never engaged in sexual intercourse Sexual intercourse (or coitus or copulation) is a sexual activity Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in ...
, especially among heterosexual pairings; this is sometimes termed '' technical virginity'' (which additionally includes anal sex,
mutual masturbation Non-penetrative sex or outercourse is Human sexual activity, sexual activity that usually does not include sexual penetration. It generally excludes the penetrative aspects of sexual intercourse, vaginal, anal sex, anal, or oral sex, oral sexu ...
and other
non-penetrative sex Non-penetrative sex or outercourse is sexual activity Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in which humans experience and express their sexuality Human sexuality is the way people ex ...
acts, but excludes penile-vaginal sex). The concept of "technical virginity" or
sexual abstinence Sexual abstinence or sexual restraint is the practice of refraining from some or all aspects of sexual activity Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in which humans experience and express th ...
through oral sex is particularly popular among teenagers in the United States, including with regard to teenage girls who not only fellate their boyfriends to preserve their virginities, but also to create and maintain intimacy or to avoid pregnancy. Other reasons given for the practice among teenage girls are peer-group pressure and as their introduction to sexual activity. Additionally, gay males may regard fellatio as a way of maintaining their virginities, with penile-anal penetration defined as resulting in virginity loss, while other gay males may define fellatio as their main form of sexual activity.


Legality

Fellatio is legal in most countries. Laws of some jurisdictions regard fellatio as penetrative sex for the purposes of sexual offenses with regard to the act, but most countries do not have laws which ban the practice, in contrast to anal sex or
extramarital sex Extramarital sex occurs when a married Marriage, also called matrimony or wedlock is a culturally and often legally recognized union between people called spouses. It establishes rights and obligations between them, as well as between t ...
. In
Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection is a word or ex ...
ic literature, the only forms of sexual activity that are consistently explicitly prohibited within marriage are anal sex and sexual activity during
menstruation Menstruation (also known as a period and many other Colloquialism, colloquial terms) is the regular discharge of blood and Mucous membrane, mucosal tissue from the endometrium, inner lining of the uterus through the vagina. The menstrual cycl ...
. However, the exact attitude towards oral sex is a subject of disagreements between modern scholars of Islam. Authorities considering it "objectionable" do so because of the penis's supposedly impure fluids coming in contact with the mouth. Others emphasize that there is no decisive evidence to forbid oral sex. In
Malaysia Malaysia ( ; ) is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographical southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions ...

Malaysia
, fellatio is illegal, but the law is seldom enforced. Under Malaysia's Section 377A of the Penal Code, the introduction of the penis into the anus or mouth of another person is considered a "carnal intercourse against the order of nature" and is punishable with imprisonment of 20 years maximum and whipping.


Tradition

Galienus called fellatio ''lesbiari'' since women of the island of
Lesbos Lesbos or Lesvos (, also ; el, Λέσβος, Lésvos ) is a Greek island located in the northeastern Aegean Sea The Aegean Sea ; tr, Ege Denizi is an elongated embayment A bay is a recessed, coastal body of water that directly con ...
were supposed to have introduced the practice of using one's lips to give sexual pleasure. The ''
Kama Sutra The ''Kama Sutra'' (; sa, कामसूत्र, , ; ) is an ancient Indian Hindu Sanskrit text on sexuality, eroticism and emotional fulfillment in life. Attributed to Vātsyāyana, The most ancient book on Kamasutra was composed in A ...
'', dating from the first century AD, describes oral sex, discussing fellatio in great detail (the ''Kama Sutra'' has a chapter on (or ), "mouth congress") and only briefly mentioning
cunnilingus Cunnilingus is an oral sex act performed by a person on the vulva or vagina of another person. The clitoris is the most sexually sensitive part of the human female genitalia, and its stimulation may result in a woman becoming sexually aroused or ...

cunnilingus
. However, according to the ''Kama Sutra'', fellatio is above all a characteristic of
eunuch A eunuch ( ) is a man A man is an adult male Male (♂) is the sex of an organism that produces the gamete known as sperm. A male gamete can fuse with a larger female gamete, or ovum, in the process of fertilization. A male cannot ...

eunuch
s (or, according to other translations, of
effeminate Effeminacy is the embodiment of traits in a boy A boy is a young male Male (♂) is the sex of an organism that produces the gamete known as sperm. A male gamete can fuse with a larger female gamete, or ovum, in the process of fertiliz ...
homosexuals Homosexuality is romantic attraction, sexual attraction Sexual attraction is attraction on the basis of sexual desire or the quality of arousing such interest. Sexual attractiveness or sex appeal is an individual's ability to attract t ...
or
trans women A trans woman is a woman A woman is an adult female Female (symbol: ♀) is the sex of an organism that produces the large non-mobile ovum, ova (egg cells), the type of gamete (sex cell) that fuses with the Sperm, male gamete during ...
similar to the modern Hijra of India), who use their mouths as a substitute for female
genitalia A sex organ (or reproductive organ) is any part of an animal or plant that is involved in sexual reproduction. The reproductive organs together constitute the reproductive system. In animals, the testis in the male, and the ovary in the female, ar ...
.
Vātsyāyana Vātsyāyana is an ancient Indian philosopher, known for authoring the '' Kama Sutra''. He lived in India during the second or third century CE, probably in Pataliputra (modern day Patna). He is not to be confused with Pakṣilasvāmin Vātsyā ...
, the author of the ''Kama Sutra'', states that it is also practiced by "unchaste women", but mentions that there are widespread traditional concerns about this being a degrading or unclean practice, with known practitioners being evaded as love partners in large parts of the country. The author appears to somewhat agree with these attitudes, claiming that "a wise man" should not engage in that form of intercourse while acknowledging that it can be appropriate in some unspecified cases. The Moche culture of ancient
Peru , , image_flag = Flag_of_Peru.svg , image_coat = Escudo_nacional_del_Perú.svg , other_symbol = Great Seal of the State , other_symbol_type = Seal (device), National seal , national_mott ...

Peru
worshipped daily life including sexual acts. They depicted fellatio in their ceramics. In some cultures, such as
Cambodia Cambodia (; also Kampuchea ; km, កម្ពុជា, ), officially the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a country located in the southern portion of the Indochinese peninsula in Southeast Asia. It is in area, bordered by Thailand to Cambodia–T ...

Cambodia
,
Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, world's most populous country, with a populat ...

Chinese
in
Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographical United Nations geoscheme for Asia#South-eastern Asia, southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions ...

Southeast Asia
, northern
Manchu The Manchu (; ) are an officially recognized ethnic minority in China and the people from whom Manchuria Manchuria is an exonym and endonym, exonym for a historical and geographic region of Russia and China in Northeast Asia (mostly in ...
tribe The term tribe is used in many different contexts to refer to a category of human social group. The predominant usage of the term is in the discipline of anthropology. The definition is contested, in part due to conflicting theoretical understa ...

tribe
s along
Amur River The Amur (russian: река́ Аму́р, ), or Heilong Jiang (, "Black Dragon A dragon is a large, serpent Serpent or The Serpent may refer to: * Snake Snakes are elongated, limbless, carnivorous reptiles of the suborder Serpen ...

Amur River
,
Sambians The Sambians were one of the Prussian tribes. They inhabited the Sambia Peninsula Sambia (russian: Самбийский полуостров, ''Sambiysky poluostrov'', literally the Sambiysky Peninsula) or Samland (russian: Земландски ...
in
Papua New Guinea Papua New Guinea (PNG; , ; tpi, Papua Niugini; ho, Papua Niu Gini), officially the Independent State of Papua New Guinea ( tpi, Independen Stet bilong Papua Niugini; ho, Independen Stet bilong Papua Niu Gini), is a country in Oceania th ...

Papua New Guinea
,
Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country in Southeast Asia. It is located at the centre of the Mainland Southeast Asia, Indochinese Peninsula, spanning , wi ...

Thailand
,
Telugus Telugu people (Telugu Telugu may refer to: * Telugu language, a major Dravidian language of India *Telugu people, an ethno-linguistic group of India * Telugu script, used to write the Telugu language ** Telugu (Unicode block), a block of Telugu ...
of
India India, officially the Republic of India (Hindi Hindi (Devanagari: , हिंदी, ISO 15919, ISO: ), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi (Devanagari: , ISO 15919, ISO: ), is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in Hindi Belt, ...

India
,
Hawaii Hawaii ( ; haw, Hawaii or ) is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspape ...

Hawaii
and other
Pacific Islander Pacific Islanders, Pacificer, Pasifika, or Pasefika, are the peoples of the Pacific Islands This is a list of islands in the Pacific Ocean, collectively called the Pacific Islands. Three major groups of island An island (or isle) ...
s, briefly taking the penis of a male infant or toddler into one's mouth was considered a nonsexual form of affection or even a form of
ritual A ritual is a sequence of activities involving gesture A gesture is a form of non-verbal communication Nonverbal communication (NVC) is the transmission of messages or signals through a nonverbal platform such as eye contact, facial exp ...

ritual
,
greeting Greeting is an act of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin '' ...

greeting
,
respect Respect, also called esteem, is a positive feeling or action shown towards someone or something considered important or held in high esteem or regard. It conveys a sense of admiration for good or valuable qualities. It is also the process of h ...

respect
, parenting love, or
lifesaving Lifesaving is the act involving rescue, resuscitation and first aid. It often refers to water safety and aquatic rescue; however, it could include ice rescue, flood and river rescue, swimming pool rescue and other emergency medical servic ...

lifesaving
. According to some sources, it was an ancient Chinese custom for grandmothers, mothers, and elder sisters to calm their baby boys with fellatio. It has also been reported that some modern Chinese mothers have performed fellatio to their moribund sons as affection and means for lifesaving, because they culturally believe that when the penis is completely retracted into the abdomen, the boy or man will die.


Other animals

have been observed engaging in oral sex.Sugita, N. (2016). Homosexual Fellatio: Erect Penis Licking between Male Bonin Flying Foxes Pteropus pselaphon. PLoS ONE, 11(11), e0166024.
Indian flying fox The Indian flying fox (''Pteropus medius'', formerly ''Pteropus giganteus''), also known as the greater Indian fruit bat, is a species of flying fox found in the Indian subcontinent. It is one of the largest bats in the world. It is of interest ...

Indian flying fox
males will lick a female's vulva both before and after
copulation Sexual intercourse (or coitus or copulation) is a sexual activity typically involving the insertion and Pelvic thrust, thrusting of the penis into the vagina for Sexual stimulation, sexual pleasure, sexual reproduction, reproduction, or both.S ...
, with the length of pre-copulation cunnilingus positively correlated with length of copulation.Maruthupandian, J., & Marimuthu, G. (2013). Cunnilingus apparently increases duration of copulation in the Indian flying fox, Pteropus giganteus. PLoS ONE, 8(3), e59743. The
fruit bat Megabats constitute the family In human society A society is a Social group, group of individuals involved in persistent Social relation, social interaction, or a large social group sharing the same spatial or social territory ...
'' Cynopterus sphinx'', has been observed to engage in fellatio during mating. Pairs spend more time copulating if the female licks the male than if she does not. Male Livingstone's fruit bats have been observed engaging in Homosexual behavior in animals, homosexual fellatio, although it is unknown if this is an example of sexual behavior or social grooming.Courts, S. E. (1996). An ethogram of captive Livingstone's fruit bats Pteropus livingstonii in a new enclosure at Jersey Wildlife Preservation Trust. DODO-JOURNAL OF THE WILDLIFE PRESERVATION TRUSTS, 32, 15-37. Bonin flying foxes also engage in homosexual fellatio, but the behavior has been observed independently of social grooming.


See also

* Bukkake * Cum shot * Cunnilingus * Facial (sex act) * Fellatio in Halacha * Gokkun * Irrumatio * Pearl necklace (sexuality) * Steak and Blowjob Day * Teabagging


References

{{Authority control Fellatio, Sexual acts Penis Articles containing video clips Oral eroticism