Before the days of Aristotle, it was thought that tiny fully formed beings were held inside of the mother’s ovaries and every drop of the father’s sperm. These beings or homunculus had all of parts needed to be a living thing except one, life. The menstrual mother’s blood was thought to contain everything that was needed for the homunculus to grow, but the ability of these parts to function as a living thing had to be triggered by the father in order for a child to be born.
Inside of the each homunculus was another homunculus, making it to where all of the homunculus’ are contained inside of the other like the matruska (the Russian nesting doll). These homunculus are infinitely small and trying to count all of them is like trying to count angels dancing.
Once semen were discovered by Anton von Leeuwenhoek, people were convinced that semen were animalcules that contained all future generations in a nice neat little transferable package.
Today, we know that these things are not true and can better understand the glory of God’s creation when it comes to having children.