Page:The Kiss and its History.djvu/141

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127
THE KISS OF RESPECT

Blocksberg exhibit to us his Satanic majesty, in the guise of a goat or cat, sitting on a high seat, while his worshippers reverently approach and kiss him under his tail. In several confessions of witches we find this kiss still more closely described: "The devil has a big tail, and under it a sort of face, but with this face he never speaks, as the only use he makes of it is to let his most devoted followers kiss the same; for kissing this face is regarded as an especially great honour." This somewhat awkward kiss occurs, moreover, in several sagas. In Harehyrden the Jeppe gives up his magic flute to the king on condition that the latter kisses his ass under its tail. It can also be shown in actual life, and we have some anecdotes from the Middle Ages which seem to prove that the podex-kiss was used as a derisory punishment. There is also a story told of a merry knight, once upon a time, compelling a party of monks to pay their respects to their abbot in the aforesaid less dignified way.

Kisses in ano seem also to have been required of neophytes on their reception into certain secret societies.

The part this kiss plays in insulting speech