The art and science of being a courtesan has a long and distinguished history. Irrelevant of the culture, nation or region, throughout history there have been women (and some men) who have traded beauty, sensuality and sex appeal in return for money or power. Or both. The power of beauty to turn men into malleable objects that can be used at will to provide whatever a woman might want is not new. How could it be. Human beings, their sex drives and sexual preferences have changed little over the few centuries in which we have recorded history. I doubt very much that it has changed much since the dawn of “modern” homo sapiens. After all, humans outside of Africa (the human species left Africa and did not really migrate back) have their genome made up of between one and three per cent Neanderthal genes. We did not out fight our competitors we out mated them. Sex is what people do.

Sexy women have always been able to trade sex or the promise of sex in return for favour and social status. From a cave woman exchanging her affection for food and protection from a dominant male to a modern day escort in Malaga trading sex for money, beautiful and sexy women with allure women have always bee able to get what they want by either giving men what they want or hinting that they might. But the courtesan was and is different.

The difference between a courtesan and an escort or a party girl is between her ears. A courtesan is undoubtedly going to have a lot of sex appeal and sensuality, but that might not be her greatest attraction. The great courtesans bring charm, wit, intelligence to the mix. Madam de Pompadour was not the most beautiful woman in the court of Louis XV but she was his official mistress for six years and then after that remained one of his chief advisers and court favourites until her death. Pamela Digby Churchill Hayward Harriman was probably the greatest courtesan of the twentieth century, using charm and brains rather than sheer looks or even sexual performance to secure the men of power that she wanted. There are modern day courtesans all around, but with the advent of social media their presentation and style has changed beyond all recognition. My personal opinion of the greatest modern day courtesan? Look no further the mother and wife of Prince William Windsor.


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