In the Middle Ages, witches were thought to have various magical dick-ruining capabilities, the most sinister of which is the ability to make the sex organ vanish entirely. According to Smith, the Malleus Maleficarum details three specific case studies in which witches were said to have magically deprived men of their penises. The first two simply involve men having their genitals hidden by some magical illusion—witches "can take away the male organ," Heinrich Kramer writes, "not indeed by despoiling the human body of it, but by concealing it with some glamour."The third account notoriously mentions the phenomenon of witches keeping disembodied penises as pets and feeding them oats and other nutritious grains:
Read more: The Real Witches of Salem, Massachusetts
Kramer goes on to describe one man's quest to restore his missing member. By his account, the poor, castrated fellow "approached a certain witch" who instructed him to "climb a particular tree where there was a nest containing many members, and allowed to take any one he liked." (He was unfortunately rebuffed after trying to pick a particularly large one because "it belonged to a parish priest.")
[W]hat shall we think about those witches who somehow take members in large numbers—twenty or thirty—and shut them up together in a birds' nest or some box, where they move about like living members, eating oats or other feed? This has been seen by many and is a matter of common talk. It is said that it is all done by devil's work and illusion, for the senses of those who see [the penises] are deluded in the way we have said.
In the Malleus Maleficarum, Kramer writes, "All witchcraft comes from carnal lust, which in women is insatiable." In its purest essence, the penis tree—and its association with endlessly lascivious witches—raises a compelling question: If dick grew on trees, would anyone need men?