Delta of Venus

Delta of Venus

by Anais Nin
3.4 42


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Delta of Venus by Anais Nin

An extraordinarily rich and exotic collection from the mistress of erotic writing

In Delta of Venus, Anais Nin pens a lush, magical world where the characters of her imagination possess the most universal of desires and exceptional of talents. Among these provocative stories, a Hungarian adventurer seduces wealthy women then vanishes with their money; a veiled woman selects strangers from a chic restaurant for private trysts; and a Parisian hatmaker named Mathilde leaves her husband for the opium dens of Peru.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780156029032
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 02/02/2004
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 162,503
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.76(d)

About the Author

Ana-s Nin (1903-1977) was born in Paris and aspired at an early age to be a writer. An influential artist and thinker, she was the author of several novels, short stories, critical studies, a collection of essays, two volumes of erotica, and nine published volumes of her Diary.

Read an Excerpt

The Hungarian Adventurer

There was a Hungarian adventurer who had astonishing beauty, infallible charm, grace, the powers of a trained actor, culture, knowledge of many tongues, aristocratic manners. Beneath all this was a genius for intrigue, for slipping out of difficulties, for moving smoothly in and out of countries.

He traveled in grandiose style, with fifteen trunks of the finest clothes, with two great Danes. His air of authority had earned him the nickname the Baron. The Baron was seen in the most luxurious hotels, at watering places and horse races, on world tours, excursions to Egypt, trips through the desert, into Africa.

Everywhere he became the center of attraction for women. Like the most versatile of actors, he passed from one role to another to please the taste of each of them. He was the most elegant dancer, the most vivacious dinner partner, the most decadent of entertainers in tête-à-têtes; he could sail a boat, ride, drive. He knew each city as though he had lived there all his life. He knew everyone in society. He was indispensable.

When he needed money he married a rich woman, plundered her and left for another country. Most of the time the women did not rebel or complain to the police. The few weeks or months they had enjoyed him as a husband left a sensation that was stronger than the shock of losing their money. For a moment they had known what it was to live with strong wings, to fly above the heads of mediocrity.

He took them so high, whirled them so fast in his series of enchantments, that his departure still had something of the flight. It seemed almost natural-no partner could follow his great eagle sweeps.

The free, uncapturable adventurer, jumping thus from one golden branch to another, almost fell into a trap, a trap of human love, when one night he met the Brazilian dancer Anita at a Peruvian theatre. Her elongated eyes did not close as other women's eyes did, but like the eyes of tigers, pumas and leopards, the two lids meeting lazily and slowly; and they seemed slightly sewn together towards the nose, making them narrow, with a lascivious, oblique glance falling from them like the glance of a woman who does not want to see what is being done to her body. All this gave her an air of being made love to, which aroused the Baron as soon as he met her.

When he went backstage to see her, she was dressing among a profusion of flowers; and for the delight of her admirers who sat around her, she was rouging her sex with her lipstick without permitting them to make a single gesture towards her.

When the Baron came in she merely lifted her head and smiled at him. She had one foot on a little table, her elaborate Brazilian dress was lifted, and with her jeweled hands she took up rouging her sex again, laughing at the excitement of the men around her.

Her sex was like a giant hothouse flower, larger than any the Baron had seen, and the hair around it abundant and curled, glossy black. It was these lips that she rouged as if they were a mouth, very elaborately so that they became like blood-red camellias, opened by force, showing the closed interior bud, a paler, fine-skinned core of the flower.

The Baron could not persuade her to have supper with him. Her appearance onstage was only the prelude to her work at the theatre. Now followed the performance for which she was famed all through South America, when the boxes in the theatre, deep, dark and half-curtained, filled with society men from all over the world. Women were not brought to this high-class burlesque.

She had dressed herself all over again in the full petticoated costume she wore onstage for her Brazilian songs, but she wore no shawl. Her dress was strapless, and her rich, abundant breasts, compressed by the tight-waisted costume, bulged upwards, offering themselves almost in their entirety to the eye.

In this costume, while the rest of the show continued, she made her round of the boxes. There, on request, she knelt before a man, unbuttoned his pants, took his penis in her jeweled hands, and with a neatness of touch, an expertness, a subtlety few women had ever developed, sucked at it until he was satisfied. Her two hands were as active as her mouth.

The titillation almost deprived each man of his senses. The elasticity of her hands; the variety of rhythms; the change from a hand grip of the entire penis to the lightest touch of the tip of it, from firm kneading of all the parts to the lightest teasing of the hair around it-all this by an exceptionally beautiful and voluptuous woman while the attention of the public was turned towards the stage. Seeing the penis go into her magnificent mouth between her flashing teeth, while her breasts heaved, gave men a pleasure for which they paid generously.

Her presence on the stage prepared them for her appearance in the boxes. She provoked them with her mouth, her eyes, her breasts. And to have their satisfaction, along with music and lights and singing in a dark, half-curtained box above the audience, was an exceptionally piquant form of amusement.

The Baron almost fell in love with Anita and stayed with her for a longer time than with any woman. She fell in love with him and bore him two children.

BUT AFTER a few years he was off again. The habit was too strong; the habit of freedom and change.

He traveled to Rome and took a suite at the Grand Hotel. The suite happened to be next to that of the Spanish Ambassador, who was staying there with his wife and two small daughters. The Baron charmed them, too. The Ambassador's wife admired him. They became so friendly and he was so delightful with the children, who did not know how to amuse themselves in this hotel, that soon it became a habit of the two little girls, upon getting up in the morning, to go and visit the Baron and awaken him with laughter and teasing, which they were not permitted to lavish upon their more solemn father and mother.

One little girl was about ten, the other twelve. They were both beautiful, with huge velvet-black eyes, long silky hair and golden skin. They wore short white dresses and short white socks. Shrieking, the two little girls would run into the Baron's room and playfully throw themselves over his big bed. He would tease them, fondle them.

Now the Baron, like many men, always awakened with a peculiarly sensitive condition of the penis. In fact, he was in a most vulnerable state. He had no time to rise and calm the condition by urinating. Before he could do this the two little girls had run across the shining floor and thrown themselves over him, and over his prominent penis, which the big pale blue quilt somewhat concealed.

The little girls did not mind how their skirts flew upward and their slender dancer's legs got tangled and fell over his penis lying straight in the quilt. Laughing, they turned over on him, sat on him, treated him like a horse, sat astride him and pushed down on him, urging him to swing the bed by a motion of his body. With all this, they would kiss him, pull at his hair, and have childish conversations. The Baron's delight in being so treated would grow into excruciating suspense.

One of the girls was lying on her stomach, and all he had to do was to move a little against her to reach his pleasure. So he did this playfully, as if he meant to finally push her off the bed. He said, "I am sure you will fall off if I push this way."

"I won't fall off," said the little girl, holding on to him through the covers while he moved as if he would force her to roll over the side of the bed. Laughing, he pushed her body up, but she lay close to him, her little legs, her little panties, everything, rubbing against him in her effort not to slide off, and he continued his antics while they laughed. Then the second girl, wishing to even the strength of the game, sat astride him in front of the other one, and now he could move even more wildly with the weight of both on him. His penis, hidden in the thick quilt, rose over and over again between the little legs, and it was like this that he came, with a strength he had rarely known, surrendering the battle, which the girls had won in a manner they never suspected.

Another time when they came to play with him he put his hands under the quilt. Then he raised the quilt with his forefinger and dared them to catch it. So with great eagerness, they began to chase the finger, which disappeared and reappeared in different parts of the bed, catching it firmly in their hands. After a moment it was not the finger but the penis they caught over and over again, and seeking to extricate it, he made them grasp it more strongly than ever. He would disappear under the covers completely, and taking his penis in his hand suddenly thrust it upward for them to catch.

He pretended to be an animal, sought to catch and bite them, sometimes quite near where he wanted to, and they took great delight in this. With the "animal" they also played hide-and-seek. The "animal" was to spring at them from some hidden corner. He hid in the closet on the floor and covered himself with clothes. One of the little girls opened the closet. He could see under her dress; he caught her and bit her playfully on the thighs.

So heated were the games, so great were the confusion of the battle and the abandon of the little girls at play, that very often his hand went everywhere he wanted it to go.

EVENTUALLY the Baron moved on again, but his high trapeze leaps from fortune to fortune deteriorated when his sexual quest became stronger than his quest for money and power. It seemed as though the strength of his desire for women was no longer under control. He was eager to rid himself of his wives, so as to pursue his search for sensation throughout the world.

One day he heard that the Brazilian dancer he had loved had died of an overdose of opium. Their two daughters were grown to the ages of fifteen and sixteen and wanted their father to take care of them. He sent for them. He was then living in New York with a wife by whom he had had a son. The woman was not happy at the thought of his daughters' arrival. She was jealous for her son, who was only fourteen. After all his expeditions, the Baron now wanted a home and a rest from difficulties and pretenses. He had a woman he rather liked and three children. The idea of meeting his daughters again interested him. He received them with great demonstrations of affection. One was beautiful, the other, less so but piquant. They had been brought up to witness their mother's life and were not restrained or prudish.

The beauty of their father impressed them. He, on the other hand, was reminded of his games with the two little girls in Rome, only his daughters were a little older, and it added a great attraction to the situation.

They were given a large bed for themselves, and later, when they were still talking of their voyage and of meeting their father again, he came into the room to bid them goodnight. He stretched out at their side and kissed them. They returned his kisses. But as he kissed them, he slipped his hands along their bodies, which he could feel through their nightgowns.

The caresses pleased them. He said, "How beautiful you are, both of you. I am so proud of you. I cannot let you sleep alone. It is such a long time since I have seen you."

Holding them in a fatherly way, with their heads on his chest, caressing them protectively, he let them fall asleep, one on each side of him. Their young bodies, with their small breasts barely formed, affected him so that he did not sleep. He fondled one and then the other, with catlike movements, so as not to disturb them, but after a moment his desire was so violent that he awakened one and began to force himself on her. The other did not escape either. They resisted and wept a little, but they had seen so much of this during their life with their mother that they did not rebel.

But this was not to be an ordinary case of incest, for the Baron's sexual fury was increasing and had become an obsession. Being satisfied did not free him, calm him. It was like an irritant. From his daughters he would go to his wife and take her.

He was afraid his daughters would abandon him, run away, so he spied on them and practically imprisoned them.

His wife discovered this and made violent scenes. But the Baron was like a madman now. He no longer cared about his dressing, his elegance, his adventures, his fortune. He stayed at home and thought only of the moment when he could take his daughters together. He had taught them all the caresses imaginable. They learned to kiss each other in his presence until he was excited enough to possess them.

But his obsession, his excesses, began to weigh on them. His wife deserted him.

One night when he had taken leave of his daughters, he wandered through the apartment, still a prey to desire, to erotic fevers and fantasies. He had exhausted the girls. They had fallen asleep. And now his desire was tormenting him again. He was blinded by it. He opened the door to his son's room. His son was calmly sleeping, lying on his back, with his mouth slightly open. The Baron watched him, fascinated. His hard penis continued to torment him. He fetched a stool and placed it near the bed. He kneeled on it and he put his penis to his son's mouth. The son awakened choking and struck at him. The girls also awakened.

Their rebellion against their father's folly mounted, and they abandoned the now frenzied, aging Baron.

Copyright © 1969 by Anaïs Nin
Copyright © 1977 by The Anaïs Nin Trust

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical,
including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.

Requests for permission to make copies of any part of the work should be mailed to the following address: Permissions Department,
Harcourt, Inc., 6277 Sea Harbor Drive, Orlando, Florida 32887-6777.

Table of Contents

The Hungarian Adventurer
The Boarding School
The Ring
Artists and Models
The Veiled Woman
The Basque and Bijou
Marcel 6

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Delta of Venus 3.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 42 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I found this book to be highly disturbing. If you're looking for a sultry read I would definitly NOT recommend. I am about as open minded and sexually liberated as they come and usually I thoroughly enjoy erotica. However, I could not get past the first chapter of this book. This is the first and only book I have ever returned and received a refund for within two hours of purchasing it. Within the first chapter, the author begins depicting sex games between an adult male and 10 & 12 years old girls! She then describes the main charachter raping his daughters and forcing sexual acts on his sleeping son. How is this 'exquisite' literature?!? Would it be okay to purchase a video or a photograph of this happening? Condoning imagery of forced sex with children is far beyond acceptable imagery. By allowing these kinds of images to be glorified we are saying 'it's okay to think about children in a sexual way.' Not only is that disturbing but its not EROTIC! That is terrifying! There are a great many things we adults may fantasize about doing to each other. There are plenty of people in the world who think even consenting adults shouldn't be able to control their own sex lives. I am not one of those. I do, however, feel that children have NO PART of adult fantasies. I'm amazed that this book has come so far with people glorifying such sad acts as 'erotica.'
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love to read erotica as much as the next sexually charged female - when it involes adults. I cannot begin to express my disgust over the first story in this book. If this story were in pictoral form someone would be going to jail because it would be child pornography!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
ABUSE SURVIVORS SHOULD AVOID THIS LIKE THE PLAGUE. I find it deeply disturbing that so many people review and write about this book of erotica without ever mentioning that it includes scenes of horrible child abuse. As an abuse survivor and a human with a soul, I really, really wish I could unread the few sentences I skimmed. I'm fine with literally anything sexual that happens between consenting adults; I'm also fine with authors delving into upsetting subjects.  But portraying child abuse as erotic is absolutely horrifying. It is beyond me how anyone can say  that Nin's "love scenes are imbued with so much warmth and dignity that one could scarcely find them offensive." I'm sure this book includes normal-enough sex scenes between adults, but it also portray life-shattering trauma inflicted on defenseless children as sexy. If you don't find that offensive, I'm very concerned about the impact you are going to have on other people. Read this book only if  you have a strong stomach, no personal connection to child abuse, and a highly developed ability to overlook disturbing content and focus on the rest, or 2. You are a horny sociopath obsessed with your own intellect, who could care less about the real-life consequences of abuse and who enjoys fine prose and jacking off to your abstract philosophies about Human Sexuality At It's Most Uncensored. Or something.
OpenWindows More than 1 year ago
In this book, Nin describes a world of sensuality with no boundaries. To the naysayers, she is not describing something one would actually do. And the point is to describe debauchery at its worst in the most sensual terms and she does it well. The beauty of this book is unsurpassed in modern erotic literature. Nin takes us to new highs and lows in an effort to describe what makes us sexual beings. I admire her well-crafted prose and enjoy her attention to imagery.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Delta of Venus joyously explores the art of human sexuality. Anais Nin's writing style is at once lyrical and straightforward. While she leaves no doubt in the reader's mind just what is going on, her countless love scenes are imbued with so much warmth and dignity that one could scarcely find them offensive. But most importantly, Anais understood that sex is nothing without emotion, and it's the emotions of her myriad characters that cause the reader to turn happily florid with every page. She understood that while sex is not to be taken lightly, it's certainly not something to be restrained, either. Lastly, of all the locales depicted in this collection of stories, she lends a special affection to Paris. I suspect that of all of Anais' lovers, the City of Light was the dearest to her heart, to wit: 'At five I always felt shivers of sensuality, shared with the sensual Paris. As soon as the light faded, it seemed to me that every woman I saw was running to meet her lover, that every man was running to meet his mistress.' and 'But we were enjoying an orgasm, as couples do in doorways and under bridges at night all over Paris.'
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first read this book at the tender age of 14. As a you male starting out on my own awakening, I was overwhelmed with the imagination, eroticism and pure delight reading this book. Fast forward 22 years later. I've re-ordered this book to read agian and to add it to my private library. A must read for everyone, but especially for, in my view, MEN! As a happily married man, this book taught me many things in the development of me becoming that man/person that I am today. Nin, bless her soul, was a woman way ahead of her time and growth. Strong, proud, a seeker of truths that are within us all. BRAVO. Buy this book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Anais makes love while wrapped in irony. She strokes her lover like a pet boa, the snake within and the tigress without. Anais makes love in willful uncertainty, always aware of the tentative touch, the quotable caress, the trespass between raw nerves and a gift of nature. Anais makes love like a cellist, never knowing for sure whether she is the musician or the sonorous body that made the sound.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is my first time reading an erotic story and it's may be my last. Because I had about $2.15 left, I just want to spend it on an ebook which I saw it under the $2.99 and below list on my nook hd+. And figure what the hell it's my first time and bad are they from those chick books I've read before from my ex's girlfriend. (Wish I could get my money back.) Anyway, some of story except one, the one in the being was sick, were mostly sad or some innocent person become a harlot or happy cause they slept with everything in life that was in there path. Well some folks will like it and some won't. So I gave it a 2 star cause some of the short story were okay. Happy Valentine
XmacAttack More than 1 year ago
This is my first exposure to this genre. WOW! Nin knew her stuff. She made even the most debauched behavior seem sensual at the same time. This is not romance. This is the physical side. The cover is so beautiful. It conveys the idea of the book perfectly-sexy without being dirty. Take a couple of hours and dive right in.
jamsreadsbooks More than 1 year ago
I’m going to say right off the bat that this book is definitely not for everyone. Many of the stories feature some very specific kinks that to most will no doubt be gut wrenching. I listed some of the worst in my warnings below as a fair warning for those that haven’t read the book. There are good number of stories in this collection that are pretty disturbing and violent, that made me really uncomfortable reading. I could never recommend this book to the average reader looking for your run of the mill pornography. I will however say that I understand why this book is hailed as a literary masterpiece and has become a pioneer of feminist fiction. The stories written for this compilation were all commissioned by a private collector that had instructed Nin to exclude romance and poetry in favor of graphic and sexually explicit stories, which she carried out the latter in great detail. Despite this, Nin was still able to add her personal touch that gave many of the short stories several layers that went beyond sex and explored themes of love, sensuality, and female eroticism as compared to men. She places great distinction between male and female sexuality that is presented elegantly even against the most graphic and sordid scenes. The biggest issue I had with this collection, besides the distressing nature of many of the stories, was the focus on a set of recurring characters over the course of multiple stories. Most of them started out alright at first, but as I got further into the book I started to dislike all of these characters and had to slog through the second half of the book. I found them to be dreadfully boring and almost put the book down entirely. I had to give this one at least a three for the talented writing alone, but I can’t say that I really enjoyed the book despite how beautifully it was written. It’s memorable, but it isn’t exactly one that I’d say that I remember fondly.
MargoH More than 1 year ago
Five stars if you are into erotica.... 0 stars if you are not. For erotica fans, this book is a winner. The thing that distinguishes it from all of the modern mindless spin-offs of 50 Shades of Gray is that it has some class and is, in fact, a classic.. Anais Nin is a renowned author of a previous generation, primarily thought of as a diarist. As a friend of famous author Henry Miller, another classic author of racy fiction, she wrote this in response to his advice about how to sell books: i.e., write about sex.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
No doubt no longer under cooyright
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
No matter how many times I tried, I just couldn't get into this writing format...
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