Page:The Kiss and its History.djvu/108

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the king's daughter has heard the lime-tree's lamentation, and she sends a message to her brother, who comes at once:

He hoisted his silken sail of red,
And o'er the salt sea on he sped.

The knight on his back a red cloak threw,
And fared to the lime-tree without ado.

He kissed himself the lime-tree's feet,
Which straight became a maiden sweet.

W. F. H.

Corresponding poetical stories of the redeeming power of the kiss are to be found in the literature of many countries, especially, for example, in the Old French Arthurian romances (Lancelot, Guiglain, Tirant le blanc) in which the princess is changed by evil arts into a dreadful dragon, and can only resume her human shape in the case of a knight being brave enough to kiss her. This kiss is called le fier baiser. From French the subject migrated to Italian literature, in which it was taken up and made use of first in Carduino, later on in Boiardo's Orlando innamorato. The hero, after many perilous adventures, reaches an enchanted castle where a young and beautiful maiden is sitting