Page:The Kiss and its History.djvu/94

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When Hector takes leave of his wife Andromache he lifts his little son up into his arms, but the child is afraid of his father's helmet, "of the gleam of the copper and the nodding crest of horse-hair."

And from his brow
Hector the casque removed, and set it down,
All glittering, on the ground; then kissed his child,
And danced him in his arms.[1]

The Evangelist Luke tells the story of the Prodigal Son's return home. "But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran and fell I on his neck, and kissed him."

The parent's kiss is like the good angel which shields the child from all evil. When Johannes in Sören Kierkegaard's Forførerens dagbog would describe the impression made on him by Cordelia he says, "She looked so young and fresh, as if nature like a tender and opulent mother had that very instant released her from her hand," and he goes on to say: "It seemed to me as if I had been witness to this farewell scene; I marked how the loving mother once again embraced her and bade her farewell; I heard her say:

  1. Translated by Edward, Earl of Derby.