Page:The Kiss and its History.djvu/135

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121
THE KISS OF RESPECT

sensation, and provoked a violent controversy between the Jansenists and Jesuits.

Besides, there are legends innumerable of sick people regaining their health by kissing relics; innumerable, too, are the satires which arose by reason of abuses in respect to cures which were achieved with relics genuine and false. One of the best known is perhaps the mediæval story of The Monk's Breeches.

A Franciscan friar was a very intimate friend of a merchant in Orleans and his wife—especially of the latter. One evening the merchant returned home unexpectedly from a journey, and the friar, who had tried to the best of his ability to entertain the wife in the husbands absence, for certain circumstances which were capable of being misunderstood, thought it wisest to disappear as quick as possible; but in his haste he forgot his breeches. The merchant, however, did not notice anything; the night was dark, and next morning he even put on the friar's breeches instead of his own. On coming back home from his office in the afternoon—he had long discovered his mistake—he demanded, with violent and hasty words, an explanation from his wife; but the latter,