How did the “X” sign begin to represent a kiss?
This tradition started with the Medieval practice of allowing those who could not write to sign documents with an “X”. This was done before witnesses, and the signer placed a kiss upon the “X” to show sincerity.
The use of “XOXO” goes back to the use of an X or cross, which was considered as good as a sworn oath in times before most people could write and therefore used the X in the same way a signature is used today – a mark of one’s word.
This is how the kiss came to be synonymous with the letter “X”, and how the “X” came to be commonly used at the end of letters as kiss symbols.
The origins of the “O” as a hug are not generally known, although it is speculated that it may represent the arms wrapped around someone being hugged.
Copyright © 2011 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and a nondenominational minister. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere.
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