"Cor, what a lovely bit of stuff. I'd like to get my fingers around those knockers."
A holy man, or a man pretending to be one,note
who, despite being ostensibly above such worldly desires, is one of the most perverted members of the cast, far more lecherous than any layperson. He's constantly eyeing up and making passes at girls, and often has a sizable stash of skin mags or other pornography.
The depiction of such characters varies widely between Western and Eastern works; while manga and anime will often play it for laughs
with Buddhist (or pseudo-Buddhist
) monk/priest characters, Western works will usually portray such characters as depraved, hypocritical, and often outright predatory (cf. Pedophile Priest
This is quite an old trope; in Europe, at least, the depravity, greed, and gluttony of monks have been a common theme of both angry screeds and popular jokes and comic literature going back to The Middle Ages
Subtrope of Nun Too Holy
. May overlap with Sexy Priest
, in which case it's the Spear Counterpart
to Naughty Nuns
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Anime & Manga
- Keisei and Umehara from Shikabane Hime.
- Miroku from InuYasha. He would touch other girls butts and every time he meets a woman, he would ask, "Would you bear my children?" even the demons. And it's actually In the Blood, sort-of: his grandfather was once defeated and cursed by Naraku, who appared to him as a beautiful woman. Add how Miroku was raised by yet another Dirty Old Monk after his father died, and is it any wonder that he turned out to be the local Handsome Lech?
- Ikkou Satonaka, the monastic protagonist of Ah My Buddha, can access a Super Mode fueled by lust for the many attractive Miko he lives with.
- Yuki's brother from Gravitation.
- Benkei Musashibo from New Getter Robo.
- Sailor Mars' grandfather, who is a Shinto priest, but is definitely not above making lewd remarks towards Mars' friends.
Films — Animation
Films — Live-Action
- Zephaniah Cromwell in Cloud of Sparrows, though he conceals it so well that other characters believe him to be asexual.
- The Friar, Summoner, Pardoner, and Monk (although he's more of a Sexy Priest version) from The Canterbury Tales. Perhaps also the Nun's Priest, but he denies it.
- The Decameron starts with the fourth story on the first day (which involves not one but two monks being naughty), and doesn't really let up after that. Of course, it's not that every story involves a lecherous monk, but many do—and if a monk is in a story, you can bet your bottom dollar that he's up to no good. Or that he's an idiot.
- Padre Damaso and Padre Salvi in Noli Me Tangere
- Much of Frollo's villainy in The Hunchback of Notre Dame is driven by his lust for Esmerelda.
- There are actually two of these in "The Cold Stark House", one of the Genevieve stories from Kim Newman: Antonio Udolpho, a monk of Ranald, disgraced because this trope, and the Kislevite revolutionary Prince Piotr Kloszowski (who is only pretending to be a priest of Morr, the god of dreams and death).
- In Malevil, the main character recalls his childhood priest. The Abbè Lebas is completely uninterested in the non-sexual confessions of the pre-teen boys and dismisses them with an impatient "Yes, yes. What else?". However, he wants every detail of any dirty thought or sexual action the boys might have to confess.
- Mentioned in Sharpe's Devil. Captain Ardiles describes how you can tell which is the best whorehouse in town: it's the one all the priests patronise. "And this one," he concludes, "is where the Bishop goes!"
- The Bishop in The 120 Days of Sodom
- The very first recorded use of any variant of the word "fuck" (in this case a slightly ciphered "fvccant", mashing an English root with a Latin ending) was used in a poem called "Flen Flyys", denouncing a bunch of horny monks that were having carnal relations with the women of a village called Ely.
- Used several times in Judge Dee, and Played for Drama. The Judge's third wife was raped by a monk who saw her defenseless, and in another a shrine renowned for allowing unfertile women to have children turns out to be run by monks who use a decidedly non-sanctioned method to conceive.
- Averted for the most part in Brother Cadfael: two monks have fathered children (one of them being Cadfael himself), but in both cases it was before they joined the monastery (and in the second's case, he thought the child had died and waited until he though he was dying
- The unfortunate brother Nhumrod from Small Gods, who is tormented every waking moment (and even worse in his sleeping moments) by thoughts of a luxurious nature. As he's also the master of the novitiates, he is always reminding them of the dangers of this sin (according to the older novitiates, asking him about it is quite educational, especially when he starts foaming at the mouth).
- Brother Hieronymus in No Good Deed... is a scheming friar who drinks ale by the barrel, can't pass up a brothel to save his life, shamelessly hits on and ogles his female companion, fights, gambles, and generally abuses his position for personal and financial gain or just to get himself out of trouble when it all blows up in his face. He also sanctimoniously calls said companion out on her own loose morals.
Mythology and Folklore
- A stock character in Chinese and Japanese folklore, and maybe in other places where Buddhism is a popular religion. When it's Played for Laughs, it might be a case of Obsfuscating Stupidity. The other times, it's to teach young monks of the danger of lust (usually involving some kind of literal man-eating shapeshifter demons).
- The Trope Codifier is the title character of Molière's Tartuffe. The entire plot of the play revolves around Tartuffe's lechery and general hypocrisy. The lecherous cleric is a stock character appearing in many a French farce from the middle-ages.
- Thoroughly Averted in Girls Love Visual Novel Aoi Shiro with the Cool Old Guy Suzuki Yuukai. You'd think an old man living alone in a rural temple would be a lot more... invigorated being surrounded by blooming, beautiful highschool girls. To be fair, Suzuki is an acquaintance of the father of girls' teacher, so he view them (including said teacher) as granddaughters. He does become Nekata TsuNami's adoptive grandfather in some route.
- He does relate one of his parishioners calling him this when he mentions the kendo team staying there (specifically why he needs so much food. He volunteered to make dinner for the team that night).
- One sidequest in Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning has the Fateless One searching all of Amalur for an old monk's collection of ribald literature.
- While he's not an "old" monk, Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade gives us Saul - a priest who just can't help eyeing up every woman he sees and hitting on anything with two X chromosomes.However, he never actually dates anyone - mostly due to increasingly ridiculous hijinks - and never actually sleeps with anyone. Furthermore, he takes his duties as a priest and faith in God surprisingly seriously and has a number of intellectual conversations with the atheist Igrene. It's ultimately implied that his attempted womanising is at least partly Obfuscating Stupidity: as he's been sent by the 'verse's equivalent of the Pope to keep an eye on the war raging across the land and protect Roy and, thus, play the part of a fool to make sure that he can remain beneath suspicion.
- Most Westerners (and probably many in other countries as well) are well aware of the cases of child molestation by Catholic priests in the past couple decades. These even extend not only to children but to the Swiss Guard, the men who are recruited for being "young, unmarried, and of high moral standards" to protect Vatican City.
- Christian monks in the Middle Ages were known to frequent (and occasionally even run) brothels and use their social influence to coerce women into sex.
- In some cases, there was a reason that the Church ran the brothels: the law required them to do so. In the Middle Ages, majority opinion was that prostitution could not be eliminated, so it was best for a trusted institution — the Church — to ensure that it happened safely and safely out of sight (i.e. in the Red Light District). The monks may or may not have actually been customers.
- Stories and jokes about lustful monks and friars were about as popular in the Middle Ages as stories about greedy lawyers in modern America. They shouldn't necessarily be taken as historical fact.
- In part, this was the result of younger sons of minor nobility going into the Church as a way to maintain an elevated social status despite their lack of inherited land and titles. Obviously, people who join the clergy for political convenience rather than religious conviction are less likely to follow the Church's moral rules.
- Speaking of the Middle Ages, there were several periods where the corruption of the Church reached all the way to the top:
- The tenth and early eleventh centuries were known as the "pornocracy" (="rule of the prostitutes") in Rome, when the Pope's mistresses (frequently Roman nobles) and their friends (frequently the mistresses' brothers) ran Rome and the Church "by means fair and foul." At about the same time, discipline in the lower ranks was also notoriously bad, with priests, monks, and bishops regularly indulging in luxuries and other things that really ought to be off-limits to one who has taken vows of chastity and poverty.
- During The Renaissance, the Popes were once again taking mistresses and generally behaving badly. While the most famous for his womanizing (and other things) is Pope Alexander VI (Rodrigo Borgia), the other Popes of the era got in on the act, as well. At the same time, most priests and lower-level ecclesiastics were not half as bad, but many bishops, most archbishops, and pretty much all the cardinals engaged in lives of luxury, intrigue, nepotism, and multiple mistresses. However, the Reformation (and consequent Counter-Reformation) put the kibosh on all that with the new rule that clergy had to be celibate and could no longer own property.
- In some areas of Europe, the local clergy just plain didn't bother with really implementing the celibacy rule for priests (the earlier ones, not the reinforcing with the Counter-Reformation). In practice, this seems to have lessened this trope — the priests apparently had less of a desire for multiple mistresses when they already were in committed long-term relationships with de-facto wives. Papal envoys were unhappy, of course, but Rome was far away and your frilla was close...
- A Buddhist monk in Sri Lanka was arrested in 2008 for running a brothel.