Throughout the course of history, young men all over the world were castrated before puberty in order to become eunuchs. They were typically servant boys from the lower classes who whose manhood was taken from them for a very specific purpose. The reasons drastically vary from trying to prolong a high-pitch singing voice of a choir boy, to taking away the distracting hormones that distracted a man from a life of academic study.
In some cases, castration was a punishment reserved for enemies who had been captured and forced into slavery. In multiple countries around the world, it was actually a requirement to become a eunuch if a man wanted to work in a royal court, because it protected the women and also improved their focus. Many times, eunuchs were emasculated intellectuals who did not pose a threat to leaders. More often than not, they became trusted advisors to kings, and many of them found themselves in a very powerful position in society.
16. Farinelli Sacrificed His Manhood To Hit High Notes
In the 18th century, an Italian opera singer named Carlo Maria Michelangelo Nicola Broschi went by the one-word stage name of “Farinelli”. He was considered to be one of the greatest opera singers of all time, because his voice could go all the way up to high soprano notes, which are usually only attainable by women. He still had the ability to sing deep, as well, so he could perform some of the most complex songs that were written at the time. The secret to his vocal success was no secret at all- it was castration.
At a young age, some choir boys in Italy known as the “castrato” were forced into becoming eunuchs before they hit puberty to preserve their high voices. Farinelli was born into a noble family full of musicians. He was raised to believe that there was nothing more honorable than sacrificing his body’s supply of testosterone if it meant having a great music career. By the time he was 15, he was traveling around the world giving his performances to members of the aristocracy.