Therefore, customarily, Roman women turned to various mixtures and potions to self-induce abortions. For a moment, a plant known as Silphium was desired (Riddle, 1992, pg. 13-17). When swallowed, this plant was established to cause a self-induced abortion. In the end though, Roman women discontinued using Silphium. For the basis that it went inexistent. It is clear that many women in ancient Rome pursued abortions for undesired pregnancies that they caused a complete plant set to go nonexistent. There were accurately hundreds of other plants supposed to be known to cause elf-induced abortion. Wormwood which is the good things they put in real absinthe so that people can fantasize, myrtle, wallflower and generally the list can go on and on (Riddle, 1992, pg. 28). Nevertheless there were also some things that were not plants that women would take by mouth and vaginally to self-induced abortion. Things like iron slag which is all the contaminations that they thaw out of the metal to make it useful. Lead was also something that they liked to use (Riddle, 1992, pg. 30-33).


Discorides show us with some samples of Roman barrenness potions: "The excellently ground leaves of the willow that was with cups of water, iron rust, and iron slag. The stem of infertile wort or bishop's hat, Epimediendum alpinum L. Or Botrychium Lunaria which is a plant that has not with confidence been acknowledged - produces sterility; when the keenly ground leaves of this plant are set to the sum of five drachms in wine after menstruation (E., N. H, 1963, pg. 20-25) This plant will prevent creation of a child for the span of five days. The stems of the plant or fern are given to women so that they will not conceive a child. If this plant is grabbed by a woman that is carrying a baby, then the herbs inside the plant will produce a miscarriage to take place. Two drachms of Ostracite which is basically drunk by the women for a couple of days and then four days after menstruation it will stop the fertilization process (E., N. H, 1963, pg. 23-24).

Magical Prescriptions

In spite of the fact that Ancient Rome was very advanced in many ways; even the most richand educated of people still relied on superstition and magic as accountable choices,: "Among Discorides' exceptional treatments are these following "The menstrual blood of Roman women appears to block the emergence of origin when they develop themselves with it, or when they move over it… Asparagus tied together as an appeal or drunk as a decoction, will prevent conception and get a woman sterile…"The respected Pliny the elder also endorses many magical prescriptive." (E., N. H, 1963, pg. 8-9)A lizard that is pushed into water until it is drowned in a person's urine has the effect of an antaphrodesiac upon the man whose urine it is (McLaren, 1990, pg. 29-30). The testicles of a game-cock that is cleaned with grease from a goose and fastened to the body in the skin of a ram of a goat show the effect of an antaphrodesiac; the same goes with the testicles of any dunghill cock, that is placed mutually with the blood of a cock, underneath the bed…if the man that is Roman makes some water that has a collection of a dog's urine he will be similarly disinclined to have sex.


In summarization, the birth control used in ancient Rome contributed to a lot dangerous self-induced abortions. Up until the sway of the Christian Apostolic customs altered their approach, many Romans would have looked at abortion, however late, as ethically akin to infanticide, and both as adequate, even if they inflict terrible pain. However, in times of today, a lot of people see self-induced abortion done late and infanticide as nearly honorably the same, and both as ethically prohibited. The difference in modern times is primarily about the morality of self-induced abortions that are done early.


E., N.H. (1963). The Medical History of Contraception. New York: Gamut Press.

McLaren, A. (1990). A History of Contraception from Antiquity to the Present Day. Cambridge: Basil Blackwell Ltd.

Riddle, J.M.…