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Phryne3Phryne (371bc – 315bc?) was a famous courtesan of ancient Greece. Her real name was Mnesarete, but because she had a yellowish complexion- she was given the nickname Phryne, which means “toad.”

She was a striking beauty with many lovers- and it is said that Praxiteles (a lover) used her as the model for the statue of Aphrodite of Knidos. What really made her famous was her trial. When during the process, it seemed as though she’d be convicted, her defender Hypereides (also a former lover), removed her robes and bared her breasts before the judges to arouse pity (amongst other things, I’m sure.) Well, it worked- they could not condemn a “prophetess and priestess of Aphrodite” to death. She was acquitted out of pity.

Imagine being so beautiful, you escape punishment for your crimes? Hmm… I think there’s been a few of those in modern day society.

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