THE more creative a person is, the more sexual partners he or she is likely to have, according to a new study today.
Researchers at Newcastle University said this could explain the behaviour of notorious womanisers such as poets Lord Byron, Dylan Thomas and artist Pablo Picasso.
The study found professional artists and poets have about twice as many sexual partners as those who do not indulge in these creative activities.
The authors also delved into the personalities of artists and poets and discovered they shared certain traits with mentally ill patients.
These traits were linked with an increased sexual activity and are thought to have evolved because they contribute to the survival of the human species.
Some 425 British men and women - including a sample of visual artists and poets and schizophrenic patients - were surveyed for the report, which has been published in the academic journal, The Proceedings of the Royal Society.
Although creative types have long been associated with increased sexual activity, this is the first time a link has been proved by research.
The average number of sexual partners for professional artists and poets was between four and 10, compared with a mean of three for non-creative types.
Statistics also showed the average number of sexual partners rose in line with an increase in the amount of creative activity a person took part in.