129 Records to Date

Parenthood

Youngest Mother
The youngest mother whose history is authenticated is Lina Medina, who delivered a 6½-pound boy by cesarean section in Lima, Peru in 1939, at an age of 5 years and 7 months. The child was raised as her brother and only discovered that Lina was his mother when he was 10. And you thought teenage pregnancies complicate matters.

Girls such as this suffer from a hormonal imbalance, or precocious puberty, which is characterized by premature secondary sex characteristic development. In a small percentage ovarian and uterine development appropriate for fertility also occurs, making pregnancy possible. Lina, for instance, began menstruating at age 3.

The full details of this event was witnessed by Edmundo Escomel and written up in the Dictionary of Medical Science, May 1939. For the original French text click here. For an English translation, click here.

Youngest Father
Sean Stewart, of Sharnbrook, England, became the father of a healthy 6 lb. baby boy on January 20, 1998, at age 12. He was given the day off from school to be at the bedside of his teenage girlfriend and next-door neighbor Emma Webster when she gave birth. Described by Emma's parents as "mature-looking", the precocious youth first told them he was 14, but later confessed his real age when news of the pregnancy broke. Shocked at first, Sean vowed to stand by both his girlfriend and his child, saying, "I want to be there for the baby and to be part of it all." As for what the future holds for the young couple, Emma said she planned to continue her education and raise the child herself with the support of her parents.

Oldest Mother
On November 7, 1996 Arceli Keh of Highland, CA made headlines by giving birth to a daughter, Cynthia, at age 63 yr. 9 mo. at Loma Linda University Medical Center. Any other barren seniors out there wishing to become prospective mothers should know that pregnancy at such an advanced age is extremely risky; most fertilization specialists would refuse to even consider the matter (Arceli lied and said she was 50 in order to get the treatment. Pretty sneaky, but it worked).

Oldest Father
Mine worker Les Colley (1898-1998), from the town of Ararat in western Victoria, made world headlines as the world's oldest father at age 93 yr. 10 mo., when his son Oswald was born in July 1992. "I never thought she would get pregnant so easy, but she bloody well did," he told the papers, discounting the possibility that perhaps HE had more to do with this miracle of fertilization. A non-drinker and non-smoker, he remained active up to the very end, succumbing to pneumonia four months shy of his 100th birthday.

Youngest Grandmother
According to Ripley's Believe It or Not!—not the most reliable of sources, but lets try to keep an open mind—Mum-Zi, a member of Chief Akkiri's harem on the island of Calabar, Nigeria, became a mother at 8 years and 4 months. Her daughter also delivered a child at age 8, making Mum-Zi a grandmother—at age 17.

Youngest Grandfather
Following the birth of a baby girl to his son, Stephen, and his girlfriend, both 14 years old, Dale Wright of Warwickshire, Brittain, became the youngest known grandfather at age 29. Mr. Wright, who was also 14 when Stephen was born, was astonished when his son told him his girlfriend was expecting, but did all he could to be supportive. "I wish it hadn't happened," he told the press, "but I couldn't shout at Stephen too much because I'd done the same at his age." Asked what he thought about his father becoming a grandpa, Stephen remarked, "I think dad was more concerned about being a granddad than me having the baby. I've got to be careful about calling him granddad now—he doesn't like it too much."



Pregnancy / Birth

Mulai Ismail, from Mouette, Histoire des Conquestes, 1682

Most Offspring
Male

The last Sharifian Emperor of Morocco, Mulai Ismail (1646-1727), a ruthless tyrant, begat numerous children through the imperial concubines. In 1703 he had at least 342 daughters and 525 sons; by 1721 he was reputed to have 700 male descendents. Though Ismail thought nothing of slaughtering a servant for the slightest provocation, he treated his infants with surprising tenderness. What scant rearing the children experienced did little to curb their natural violent inclination they inherited from their father: They soon became a public nuisance, given to murdering slaves or, in their less vicious moments, robbery and pilfering.

Female
According to Guinness World Records 2001, the highest officially recorded number of children born to one mother is 69, to the first wife of Feodor Vassilyev (1707-1782) of Shuya, Russia. Between 1725 and 1765, in a total of 27 confinements, she gave birth to 16 pairs of twins, seven sets of triplets, and four sets of quadruplets. 67 of them survived infancy.


The modern world record for giving birth is held by Leontina Albina from San Antonio, Chile. Now in her mid-sixties, Leontina claims to be the mother of 64 children, of which only 55 of them are documented, birth certificates apparently being something of a less-than-serious concern for destitute Chileans. She is listed in the 1999 Guinness book but mysteriously dropped from later editions.

Earliest Pregnancy Test
Straight from the mouth of an Egyptian physician, circa 2000 BC: "…you shall put wheat and barely into purses of cloth, the woman shall pass her water on it every day—it being mixed with dates and sand. If both sprout she will give birth; if the wheat sprouts, she will give birth to a boy; if the barley sprouts, she will give birth to a girl; if they do not sprout, she will not give birth at all." The test is right about one quarter of the time.

Highest Milk Production
In 1965 a nursing mother in Sweden was producing an amazing 3.5 pints of milk daily. "Unable to feed her infant more than two pints," it says here, "she marketed the surplus at a local maternity hospital." Another startling example of the profit that can be realized if only we were to make the most of our natural abilities.



Contraception

Earliest Contraceptive
Egyptian papyri fragments, dating from the XII Dynasty (1850 BC) and considered the oldest medical literature to survive to the present time, contains a somewhat icky recipe to prevent pregnancy: apply crocodile dung to one's insides, irrigate with honey and natron, and then insert a gum-like substance. Another surviving piece, the Ebers papyrus (1550 BC), recommends using lint tampons moistened with juice from the tips of fermented acacia shrubs.

Most / Least Effective Contraceptive
The following table is a reprint from The Kinsey Institute New Report on Sex (1990) with some additional augmentation by myself.

Contraceptive method

Failure rate in 100 typical users who used method for one year

Reversibility

Protective against STDs

Depo-Provera

0.3

Yes

No

Vasectomy

0.4

Not Usually

No

Tubal sterilization

0.4

Not Usually

No

Combined oral contraceptive pills

2.0

Yes

No

Condom and spermicide

2-3

Yes

Yes*

Progestin-only pills

2.5

Yes

No

IUD

5.0**

Yes

No

Condom

10

Yes

Yes*

Cervical cap

13

Yes

Some*

Spermicidal foams, creams, jellies, and vaginal suppositories

18

Yes

Some*

Diaphragm with spermicide

19

Yes

Some*

Sponge with spermicide

10-20

Yes

Some*

Coitus interruptus (withdrawal)

23

Yes

No

Fertility awareness (basal body temperature, mucus method, calendar, and "rhythm")

24

Yes

No

Douching

40

Yes

No

Blind chance—no contraception used

90

Yes

No

*Also provide some protection against STDs if they contain nonoxynol-9 or octoxynol
**These data are for brands of IUDs no longer available in the U.S.

As you can see, the new contraceptive method Depo-Provera has proven to be the most effective method with a 99.7% chance of preventing pregnancy, and, assuming you don't leave things to the province of fate, douching the least effective.

Earliest Condom
Gabriel Fallopius is generally credited for inventing this invaluable device, which he described in De Morbo Gallico ("The French Disease", 1564). The Italian anatomist's design, basically a stiff linen sheath covering the glans, was motivated less by preventing pregnancy than protecting the man from venereal disease. At the time, pregnancy was viewed as the woman's problem.

But Gabriel wasn't the first to dream up such an invention. Sheaths made of stiffened sheep's intestines were used in ancient Rome, and there is an Egyptian illustration dating to the XIX Dynasty (1350-1200 BC) of a man wearing a similar covering.

Largest Condom
Seeking a way to impress the populace with the threat of AIDS, activists in December 1998 paraded an enormous condom through the streets of Bogota, Colombia as part of an annual holiday street fair. The phenomenal prophylactic—12 feet in diameter, stretching over a half-mile in length and weighing roughly 3,000 lbs. (+800m, 1360kg)—took two months to build and cost $13,000. As it was paraded though the main boulevards, a troupe of dancers performed along side, accompanied by a convoy of armed policemen, for, um, protection.

The whole scheme was dreamed up by doctors specializing in sexually transmitted diseases at the Santiago de Cali University along with workers from drug rehabilitation programs. "The idea," on doctor told reporters, "is for people to realize that the disease exists, that it's here, and that it represents a far greater threat than the condom we're displaying."

The idea was hardly new: In 1994, AIDS activists slipped a 72-foot condom over the obelisk in Paris’ Place de la Concorde.

Most Effective Condom
A joint study by the Mariposa Foundation, the University of California, and the University of Southern California sought to determine the reliability of condoms and rigorously tested the leading brands for both the potential for viral leakage and their overall dependability. The results were tabulated on a weighted scale, 100 being the best, and are shown below.

Brand

Score

Ramses Sensitol 91.3
Ramses Non-Lube 91.3
Gold Circle Coin 85.2
Gold Circle 83.7
Sheik Elite 83.7
Durex Nuform 81.7
Pleaser 80.2
Ramses Extra 78.7
Embrace Her 77.3
Hot Rubber (Switzerland) 77.2

Oldest Chastity Belt
The oldest model in existence, displayed today in the armory collection of Venice's Doges' Palace, dates back to 1388 and belonged to Francesco II, ruler of Padua. Known as the Tyrant of Padua, he required his wife to wear it constantly in his absence. Padded with leather, the belt covers the entire pubic region and is equipped with razor-sharp teeth at each orifice to discourage exploration by so much as a fingertip. Francesco, however, liked to tempt fate by violating his wife through the girdle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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