Irish Twitter crowdfunded an auction bid on a haunted Victorian dildo—and won

Irish erotica history just scored a huge win after Twitter came together to crowdfund an auction bid for a possibly haunted, ivory-carved Victorian dildo from an American collector. The artifact will now be returned to its homeland and ostensibly donated to an Irish museum to be put on display.

The effort was coordinated by Shawna Scott, owner of Sex Siopa—Ireland’s “favorite sex positive online boutique,” who wrote on Twitter Monday that she had previously noticed the Victorian dildo last time it went up for auction in 2017 and that she was “devastated” to see it leave Ireland.

At the time, the dildo made headlines when it was put up for sale by a well-known Anglo-Irish family. Auctioneer Damien Matthews of Matthews Auctioneers then told the Irish Times that it was “one of the most interesting pieces he’s ever sold at auction in his career.”

“It was crazy, we had bids from museums, sex-shop owners, housewives, doctors–just mad,” he told the publication. “It is interesting in that it reveals practices from Victorian-era Ireland that we wouldn’t have known about.”

According to Matthews, the ivory used for the dildo is estimated to date back to the 1840s and would have likely have been carved in China. He believes it would have been a “very loving” gift from husband to wife.

However as the dildo, now decreased in value, once again found its way to auction this week, Scott was not about to lose another chance at preserving such an important part of Irish sexual history.

It was then that Scott got the idea to crowdfund to win back the dildo for Ireland. Given the short turnaround, however, she didn’t have time to set up a campaign and instead had to take donations from Paypal—promising to return all donations in the event that she did not secure the winning bid.

And then, it was on like Donkey Kong, with the hashtag HauntedDildoAuction:

After what must have been a helluva nail-biter, finally on Tuesday it was time. And … success! She managed to win the Victorian dildo for the bargain price of €620.

Needless to say, those who had been along for the ride were ecstatic with the happy outcome.

It’s still unclear where the dildo will be donated to, but there are already a few takers:

Wherever it winds up, there’s no disputing that this is a great day for Irish history and an even greater day for dildos.

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Stacey Ritzen

Stacey Ritzen

Stacey Ritzen is a reporter and editor based in West Philadelphia with over 10 years' experience covering pop culture, web culture, entertainment, and news. You can follow her on Twitter @staceyritzen.