Page:The Kiss and its History.djvu/26

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As we perceive from both these examples, there is a great distinction between kisses in their gustative aspect, but, for obvious reasons, I shall entirely exclude the variety represented by Mette Splyd.

The most frequently employed and, at the same time undoubtedly the most fitting epithet of a kiss, is that it is sweet. The shepherd in the French pastorals is fond of asking for a sweet kiss (un doux baiser), and poets innumerable, like Wenceslaus, have sung about the beloved's sugar mouth. During the Renaissance such expressions as her bouche sucrine (sugary mouth) and bouche pleine de sucre et d'ambregris (mouth full of sugar and ambergris) were often employed.

We find this further borne out by two Latin epigrams. One asks:—"What is sweeter than mead?" and the answer runs: "The dew of heaven. And what is sweeter than dew?—Honey from Hybla? What is sweeter than honey?—Nectar. Than nectar?—A kiss."

Quid mulso præstat? Ros cœli. Rore quid? Hyblæ Mel. Melle hoc? Nectar. Nectare? Suaviolum.

The second epigram goes through a