Kissing Customs Kissing has been around for many thousands of years, and it is thought that it originated in India because of stone carvings discovered with people kissing. However, this is only one of the theories that arise today. No matter where it originated from, it is seen almost everywhere you look today. With so many different cultures in the world today, it is interesting to see how some view kissing.
It is thought that France was the first country to discover kissing.
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They called it the “soul kiss, ” obviously because it comes from the soul, but it was later called the “French kiss” by other countries. It is still known as French kissing today but has also taken on a number of other names like “pashing, ” “snogging, ” “tonsil hockey, ” “tongue dancing” and much more.
In Paris, four kisses are given to greet close family and friends starting from the left and going to the right. It is thought that Paris was the first place to discover kissing. Most other countries in Europe give two kisses to greet people and two kisses to say good-bye. In Rome many years ago, the husbands came home from work and gave their wives a kiss to see whether they had been drinking alcohol all day. It was the only way for them to tell! They didn't think it was fair if they had been working all day and they knew their wives wouldn't have been doing anything if they were drunk. The husbands also wanted to make sure their wives weren't spending their hard-earned money on alcohol.
In a village called Sesetan, once a year they have a festival with teenagers where the girls stand on one side of the town and the boys stand on the other. They slowly walk towards each other to the beat of a drum until they reach each other, then they kiss. After this, they have water poured over them!
In Eskimo, Polynesian, and Malaysian cultures, rubbing noses is a form of kissing. This is usually to greet people they know.
In some religious cultures, people thought that the breath of a leader was magical. People would join their lips together to pass this magical breath passed to them by their leader to one another. Spectators saw this and started to do it to each other, hoping they, too, would get these magical powers. It turned into a form of kissing.
A long time ago, before baby food was invented, it is thought that mothers chewed their food and fed it to their babies, just like mother birds with their chicks. It was thought of as a loving act because they were giving them life, and the tradition continued as a way to show others they love them. In Russia, the highest sign of recognition was to be kissed by the Tsar. Everyone would know if you had been kissed by the Tsar and you were shown complete respect by everyone.
The Chinese didn't start kissing until the Westerners introduced it to them when they arrived. At the start, they thought of kissing as a form of cannibalism and were completely scared off by it.
Just like everything the Irish do, they have thought of a way to get good luck from kissing a stone. The Blarney Stone is part of an old castle, and it is thought that if you kiss it you will be given the gift of true eloquence. People go to great lengths to kiss this stone, as it is very tough to reach. You have lie down with someone sitting on your legs and bend over backwards to fit down a little crevice to reach the stone.
During medieval times in Italy, if a man and a woman were caught kissing anywhere, they were automatically forced to marry each other. They had no say in the matter. If they didn't marry, they would have to suffer the consequences. I guess this would make you think twice before kissing a stranger!
African tribes have great respect for their chiefs, and to show this, they actually kiss the ground their chiefs walk on, as if it is holy ground. It is a major privilege for the villagers to kiss the ground, because it is as if they are kissing something sacred.