A condom which has been around since about 200 years ago was unveiled and put up for auction. It has astonishingly sold for a staggering £460 – but what it’s made from has raised a few eyebrows.
The prophylactic, thought to be in use in the 18th or 19th Century, is made from sheep intestine.
Sold for £462 online, such an old condom is a real rarity with only a few left in existence, most of which can only be found in museums. Condoms from the Middle Ages were made from the intestines of sheep, pigs, calves and goats. Because it was very expensive and time consuming to make such a condom, they were often used only by wealthy people.
Since the advent of inexpensive rubber condoms in the 19th Century, condoms from sheep intestine were no longer used.
During the auction, which was held on online auction website, Catawiki, there was much interest in the condom with a bidding war eventually seeing it sold for more than double its estimated value, making it the most expensive in the world. The condom, which was found in France, is a remarkable 19cm long. Other condoms that have been preserved from this time generally measure 15cm in length. The average length of modern day condoms is approximately 18cm long.
Catawiki wrote: “An ancient condom made of sheep gut is truly remarkable. In addition, the artefact provides further insight into our history and the way we have evolved over time.
“Therefore, during the auction there was a lot of interest from various museums.”
The site added: “What this person is going to do with the condom is not yet known.”
Eventually, the highest bid was made by a bidder from Amsterdam.