Kiss

The Kiss by Francesco Hayez, 19th century.

A kiss (from Old English cyssan "to kiss", in turn from coss "a kiss", perhaps onomatopoeic) is the touching of the lips to some other thing, usually another person. Science of kissing is called Philematology.

Kissing is a learned behaviour, related to the grooming behaviour seen between other animals. Many non-human primates also exhibit kissing behaviour.

Kissing as affection

In modern Western culture, kissing is most commonly an expression of affection.

Between people of close acquaintance, a kiss, often reciprocal, is offered as a greeting or a good-bye. This kind of kiss is typically made by brief contact of puckered lips to the skin of the cheek or no contact at all, and merely performed in the air near the cheek with the cheeks touching. Such kissing is a common greeting in European and Latin American countries between a man and a woman or between two women. Relatives may kiss children to comfort them or show affection, and vice versa.

As an expression of romantic affection or sexual desire, kissing involves two people kissing one another on the lips, usually with much more intensity, and for a considerably longer period of time. In more passionate kissing couples may open their mouths, suck on each others' lips, or move their tongues into each others' mouths (see French kissing). Sexualized kissing may also involve one person kissing another on various parts of the body.

In romantic and sexual kissing, the physical sensations are often of primary importance.

Kissing as symbolism

A symbolic kiss

When not an expression of affection, a kiss is a largely symbolic gesture in that the purpose of the kiss is to convey a meaning, such as salutations or subordination, rather than to experience the physical sensations associated with kissing. Kisses on the cheek as salutations are traditional in many parts of continental Europe, and the number of kisses, alternating cheeks, depends on which region one comes from.

Kissing may also be used to signify reverence and subordination, as in kissing the ring of a king or pope. A kiss can also be rude or done for the sake of irritating or proving one's superiority. A rude kiss or a kiss with a smack is referred to, in the USA, as a buss.

A more ominous use of the kiss is as a symbol of condemnation as may be observed when a crime lord kisses an underling, in effect imposing a sentence of death upon that person, the ultimate "goodbye kiss" or the "kiss of death."

The term Kissing Hands is used to formally describe the appointment of the senior state figures to office by British monarchs. Though in the past, the monarch's hand was actually kissed, this is no longer so. When figures such as the British Prime Minister, cabinet members and diplomatics are formally appointed, they are said to have Kissed Hands. (Kissing the hand is still practised as a romantic flourish, especially in Latin countries.)

Man kissing boy
Miyagawa Isshô, ca. 1750; One of ten panels on shudo themes from a shunga-style painted hand scroll. Private collection.

Other uses

The term is also used for expressions of affection that do not involve the lips. The "Eskimo Kiss" is executed by the two individuals gently rubbing the tips of their noses together — in the Maori culture of New Zealand this is called a hongi. A "butterfly kiss" consists of two people putting their eyes close to each other and fluttering their eyelashes upon one another's.

A kiss can be "blown" using actions of the hand and the mouth. This is used to convey affection usually while parting, when the partners are physically distant but can view each other. Blown kisses are also used when a popular person wishes to convey affection to a large crowd or audience.

The kiss does not exist in all cultures, as certain societies find it repugnant.

Young couple kiss in Minnesota, 1900

Asymmetry in kissing

In order to avoid clashing noses, a couple will often turn their faces to one side or another when kissing, so that their heads are at an angle from one another. Often, to make this more comfortable, one person, sitting upright, will support another, perhaps across their lap and in their arms, thus combining hugging and kissing. The person supporting the other is most likely taking the more active role in kissing the other. Writing in Nature, psychologist Oner Güntürkün observed couples kissing in public places such as airports and parks, and showed that the direction of turning is more frequently to the right than the left by a 2:1 ratio. Güntürkün ascribed this asymmetry to a neonatal right side preference.

(data from Nature 421, 711 (13 February 2003); doi:10.1038/421711a)

The anatomy of kissing

Kissing is a complex behaviour that requires significant coordination. The most important muscle involved is the orbicularis oris muscle; it is used to pucker the lips and informally known as the kissing muscle. The tongue can also be an important part of the kiss.

The Kiss by Gustav Klimt.

Kisses in history, art and literature

  • In the gospels, Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss — a subversive use of the kiss, as it is a symbol of affection.
  • The last words of British naval commander Horatio, Lord Nelson, are said to have been 'Kiss me Hardy!' to one of his subordinates.
  • In the fairytale Sleeping Beauty and the Greek myth of Pygmalion and Galatea, a romantic kiss is used by a male to awaken or breathe life into a female, which feminist critics have interpreted as symbolising the suspect idea that women don't have much of a life unless their sexuality is awakened through the attention of men. The Matrix turns the tables on this motif when Trinity kisses the sleeping main character Neo, bringing him back to life at the end of the movie.
  • In the Frog Prince fairytale, it is the male who is transformed from frog to man by a romantic kiss.
  • Gustav Klimt painted a work entitled The Kiss.
  • The Turkish 1997 hit song Simarik has a chorus that ends with two kiss sounds. The Australian cover version is even titled Kiss Kiss.
  • Auguste Rodin created the sculpture The Kiss (Le Baiser).
  • In Lady and the Tramp, while Lady and Tramp were both eating the end of a noodle at the same time, their lips end up touching.

Trivia

  • The longest recorded kiss took place in Tel Aviv, Israel, on April 5, 1999, between Karmit Tsubera and Dror Orpaz. It lasted 30 hours and 45 minutes.

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The tongue can also be an important part of the kiss. Holdens have been a staple of domestic touring car racing since the 1960s, and the quasi-factory Holden Racing Team has been dominant in V8 Supercar racing. The most important muscle involved is the orbicularis oris muscle; it is used to pucker the lips and informally known as the kissing muscle. Holden Special Vehicles (HSV) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Holden selling extensively modified, high-performance Commodore variants (including the Monaro and the Statesman). Kissing is a complex behaviour that requires significant coordination. It is sold in limited numbers in the UK as the Vauxhall Monaro. (data from Nature 421, 711 (13 February 2003); doi:10.1038/421711a). Starting with the 2004 model year, the Monaro has been exported to the United States, rebadged as the Pontiac GTO, and the Middle East, rebadged as the Chevrolet Lumina Coupe.

Güntürkün ascribed this asymmetry to a neonatal right side preference. The revived Monaro was released in the Australian market in October 2001. Writing in Nature, psychologist Oner Güntürkün observed couples kissing in public places such as airports and parks, and showed that the direction of turning is more frequently to the right than the left by a 2:1 ratio. A revived Monaro, based on the previous model Commodore, has attracted wide attention since being shown as a concept car at Australian motor shows, and a large waiting list after it was put into production. The person supporting the other is most likely taking the more active role in kissing the other. Between 1968 and 1974, GMH sold a two-door variant of their full-size Holden sedan as the Monaro, with great success. Often, to make this more comfortable, one person, sitting upright, will support another, perhaps across their lap and in their arms, thus combining hugging and kissing. Fiji, Singapore, Brunei and Indonesia have also been Holden export markets.

In order to avoid clashing noses, a couple will often turn their faces to one side or another when kissing, so that their heads are at an angle from one another. Holden also exports its Statesman sedan to the Middle East as the Chevrolet Caprice, to South Korea as the Daewoo Statesman, and China as the Buick Royaum. The kiss does not exist in all cultures, as certain societies find it repugnant. The Holden Monaro is sold under that name through Vauxhall dealerships in the United Kingdom. Blown kisses are also used when a popular person wishes to convey affection to a large crowd or audience. A modified version of the Holden Monaro is sold in the United States as the Pontiac GTO. This is used to convey affection usually while parting, when the partners are physically distant but can view each other. HSV's modified vehicles are also sold in the United Kingdom.

A kiss can be "blown" using actions of the hand and the mouth. Holden's exports to the Middle East and Brazil were the first left hand drive cars built since the 1960s, when it sold cars in Hawaii. A "butterfly kiss" consists of two people putting their eyes close to each other and fluttering their eyelashes upon one another's. It is also sold in South Africa, Thailand, and parts of the Middle East badged as a Chevrolet Lumina, and in Brazil as the Chevrolet Omega. The "Eskimo Kiss" is executed by the two individuals gently rubbing the tips of their noses together — in the Maori culture of New Zealand this is called a hongi. The Holden Commodore is as popular in New Zealand (where it has hit the number-one slot in the sales' charts from time to time) as it is in Australia, often being used as a police car. The term is also used for expressions of affection that do not involve the lips. The Astra Turbo, and Tigra have also been released in Australia, but will not be sold in New Zealand.

(Kissing the hand is still practised as a romantic flourish, especially in Latin countries.). It was only in August 2005 that the wagon version of the Holden Astra went on sale in Australia, while in New Zealand, the Astra wagon is to be dropped, like the Zafira in 2004. When figures such as the British Prime Minister, cabinet members and diplomatics are formally appointed, they are said to have Kissed Hands. There are still differences between the Holden model ranges in Australia and New Zealand. Though in the past, the monarch's hand was actually kissed, this is no longer so. For a very brief, and with hindsight anomalous, period during 1998-1999, the Holden Frontera was sold new in New Zealand as the Isuzu Wizard, though things have now been brought into line with Australia. The term Kissing Hands is used to formally describe the appointment of the senior state figures to office by British monarchs. Similarly, the Isuzu Trooper off-road vehicle was rebadged the Holden Jackaroo, as in Australia, although owing to the widespread availability of the identical Isuzu Bighorn as a used Japanese import, that name was used on brand new models imported by Holden New Zealand.

A more ominous use of the kiss is as a symbol of condemnation as may be observed when a crime lord kisses an underling, in effect imposing a sentence of death upon that person, the ultimate "goodbye kiss" or the "kiss of death.". Later on this was changed to bring the New Zealand model range in line with Australia. A rude kiss or a kiss with a smack is referred to, in the USA, as a buss. Early models of the Holden Astra and Vectra in New Zealand differed from those sold in Australia, in that they had a distinctive grille with a 'V' containing the Holden badge, similar to that used by Vauxhall in the UK. A kiss can also be rude or done for the sake of irritating or proving one's superiority. The Astra was introduced the following year, identical Opel-badged models, imported second hand from Japan, already being sold locally. Kissing may also be used to signify reverence and subordination, as in kissing the ring of a king or pope. The Opel name was dropped, and the Vectra was rebadged as a Holden, even though it was then not available in Australia.

Kisses on the cheek as salutations are traditional in many parts of continental Europe, and the number of kisses, alternating cheeks, depends on which region one comes from. It was only in 1994, with Holden's future more secure, that General Motors New Zealand finally became Holden New Zealand. When not an expression of affection, a kiss is a largely symbolic gesture in that the purpose of the kiss is to convey a meaning, such as salutations or subordination, rather than to experience the physical sensations associated with kissing. This, however, created little brand loyalty and consumers did not accept 'GM' as a brand. In romantic and sexual kissing, the physical sensations are often of primary importance. Commercials bore the Isuzu name. Sexualized kissing may also involve one person kissing another on various parts of the body. Therefore, the mainstream range in 1989 consisted of:.

In more passionate kissing couples may open their mouths, suck on each others' lips, or move their tongues into each others' mouths (see French kissing). In the late 1980s, General Motors New Zealand attempted to use many makes and have 'GM' as the main brand. As an expression of romantic affection or sexual desire, kissing involves two people kissing one another on the lips, usually with much more intensity, and for a considerably longer period of time. Despite the car's origins and place of manufacture, it was marketed in New Zealand as 'American'. Relatives may kiss children to comfort them or show affection, and vice versa. Research showed that Pontiac had a good reputation, so rather than follow the Australian route with a rebadged Toyota Corolla, GM New Zealand brought in the Opel Kadett based LeMans from Daewoo of South Korea, attempting to fill both the compact and mid-sized sectors until the arrival of the Opel Vectra. Such kissing is a common greeting in European and Latin American countries between a man and a woman or between two women. Therefore, Opel made a small reintroduction with a tiny selection of highly priced models (Kadett GSE, Ascona GT, Senator, Monza).

This kind of kiss is typically made by brief contact of puckered lips to the skin of the cheek or no contact at all, and merely performed in the air near the cheek with the cheeks touching. Certainly what was happening in Australia did not instil confidence: rebadged Suzukis, Nissans and Isuzus were occupying the bottom end of the range, while the Commodore was about to shift to a Japanese-designed three-litre engine. Between people of close acquaintance, a kiss, often reciprocal, is offered as a greeting or a good-bye. In around 1985, there were strong rumours, and a GM report, that indicated that Holden would cease to exist in its current form, and that its models would be exclusively designed offshore. In modern Western culture, kissing is most commonly an expression of affection. pondered the reintroduction of other GM brands. . As the 1980s continued and Holden's future became uncertain, General Motors New Zealand Ltd.

Many non-human primates also exhibit kissing behaviour. The Isuzu-based model survived until Holden introduced the ultimate Camira, the JE, which made it across the Tasman Sea in 1987. Kissing is a learned behaviour, related to the grooming behaviour seen between other animals. This was known as the JJ Camira, and proved to be much better than its Australian-sourced predecessor. Science of kissing is called Philematology. However, the Australian Holden Camira (JB series) fared so badly in New Zealand that local GM bosses decided to replace it with a completely different model based on the Isuzu Aska (or JJ) from Japan. A kiss (from Old English cyssan "to kiss", in turn from coss "a kiss", perhaps onomatopoeic) is the touching of the lips to some other thing, usually another person. As 1983 began, Holden began fielding something close to a full range: the Gemini as the entry-level car, the Camira as the mid-sized one, and the Commodore in the large sector.

It lasted 30 hours and 45 minutes. Isuzu (selling the Gemini) and Vauxhall (with the last Chevette) disappeared on the launch of the Holden Gemini TE series in 1981, while Bedford met its demise with the assembly of the last CF vans in 1984. The longest recorded kiss took place in Tel Aviv, Israel, on April 5, 1999, between Karmit Tsubera and Dror Orpaz. Vauxhall's full line-up was pared back to the Chevette and Viva by 1977 as Holden's range expanded to include mid-sized cars (the Torana and Sunbird). In Lady and the Tramp, while Lady and Tramp were both eating the end of a noodle at the same time, their lips end up touching. Chevrolet and Pontiac had effectively disappeared from the market by the 1970s, though there were still Chevrolet trucks from the US and a top-end Holden Statesman with a Chevrolet V8 engine, known as the Chevrolet 350. Auguste Rodin created the sculpture The Kiss (Le Baiser). However, for such a small market, it made little sense to have so many brands, so each was rationalized from the 1960s.

The Australian cover version is even titled Kiss Kiss. While the Holden name was used on virtually all GM products in Australia, in New Zealand other GM products from Vauxhall, Bedford, Isuzu, Pontiac and Opel were sold as well. The Turkish 1997 hit song Simarik has a chorus that ends with two kiss sounds. The first export of Holdens to New Zealand began in 1954, and for many years they were assembled at the General Motors New Zealand plant in Petone outside Wellington, until it closed in 1990. Gustav Klimt painted a work entitled The Kiss. Due to tariffs and exchange rates, various Vectra models are more expensive than the larger Commodore in Australia and New Zealand, and the European model is likely to be replaced by a version of the new Daewoo Tosca in 2006. In the Frog Prince fairytale, it is the male who is transformed from frog to man by a romantic kiss. The Holden Barina will be based on the Daewoo Kalos, and the entry-level Astra Classic will be replaced by the Holden Viva, based on the Daewoo Lacetti.

The Matrix turns the tables on this motif when Trinity kisses the sleeping main character Neo, bringing him back to life at the end of the movie. Holden has already established close research and design links with Daewoo, with which it provides the large Statesman model. In the fairytale Sleeping Beauty and the Greek myth of Pygmalion and Galatea, a romantic kiss is used by a male to awaken or breathe life into a female, which feminist critics have interpreted as symbolising the suspect idea that women don't have much of a life unless their sexuality is awakened through the attention of men. Although its Opel-sourced models have been relatively successful, Holden has now looked to Daewoo in South Korea for replacements. The last words of British naval commander Horatio, Lord Nelson, are said to have been 'Kiss me Hardy!' to one of his subordinates. It has subsequently been imported from Europe. In the gospels, Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss — a subversive use of the kiss, as it is a symbol of affection. The Vectra was briefly assembled locally for export to neighbouring countries, but this was dealt a severe blow by the Asian economic crisis in 1997.

The Opel Corsa was sold in Australia as the Holden Barina, replacing another model of that name, originally introduced in 1989, based on the Suzuki Swift. Between 1996 and 1997, Holden replaced the Toyota-based Nova and Apollo with the Astra and Vectra, imported from Opel in Europe. In 1995, UAAI was dissolved, and Holden was able to source product offerings from GM rather than from other manufacturers in Australia. This badge engineering proved unpopular with buyers, even though rival Ford had been successful with its Laser and Telstar models, which were just thinly disguised versions of Mazda's 323 and 626.

In 1989, Holden began selling rebadged versions of Toyota's Corolla and Camry, as the Nova and Apollo, while Toyota sold the Commodore as the Toyota Lexcen, named after the late America’s Cup yacht designer, Ben Lexcen. In 1988, it then entered a partnership with Toyota in Australia, to form a joint venture company called United Australian Automobile Industries (UAAI). Holden sold the Nissan Pulsar as a Holden Astra (not to be confused with the Opel-sourced model of the same name) and used the 3.0 L 6 cylinder RB engine from Nissan's Skyline in the VL Commodore (1986-1988). Between the late 1980s and mid-1990s, the Australian government introduced a plan to restructure the local motor industry, which involved local manufacturers sharing models, known as the Button Plan, after the federal minister for trade and industry, John Button.

Bodywork for the Camira wagon was exported to the UK for Vauxhall's Cavalier. The Torana was replaced by the 1982 Camira, which was GM's medium-sized "J-Car". The four, later renamed Sunbird, was very sluggish, the eight-cylinder version alarmingly fast: the six was the most popular option. The Torana LH/LX series, which consisted of 3 door hatchback and 4 door booted sedan variants (between 1974 and 1978) was unusual in that it was offered with a choice of four (1.9 L cam-in-head), six (2.8 L, 3.3 L OHV) or eight cylinder (4.2 L, 5.0 L OHV) engines.

The name 'Torana' was an Aboriginal word meaning 'to fly'. Another notable Holden offering was the mid-size Torana, introduced in the mid-1960s, and initially based on the British Vauxhall Viva. Holden has offered a reasonably full range of other vehicles, some locally produced but others sourced from various other parts of the General Motors empire, such as Chevrolet, Opel, Isuzu and Suzuki. The Kingswood sedan, wagon and ute (utility or pickup truck) was exported and assembled abroad, including New Zealand along with South Africa (badged as the Chevrolet Kommando), Indonesia and Trinidad and Tobago.

Despite the arrival of competitors in the 1960s, Holden's locally-produced large six and eight-cylinder cars have remained Australia's top-selling vehicle for most of that time. Better suited to Australian conditions than its competitors, and assisted by tariff barriers, it rapidly became Australia's best-selling car. Although not particularly mechanically or stylistically sophisticated, it was simple, rugged, more powerful than most competitors, and offered reasonable performance and fuel economy in an affordable package. The Holden 48/215, introduced in 1948, was a medium-sized vehicle fitted with a 132 in³ (2.15 L) engine, and based on a design proposed for the 1949 Chevrolet, that had been rejected as being too small for that purpose.

After the end of World War II, the Australian government took steps to encourage an Australian automotive industry, and persuaded General Motors to build "Australia's own car". . In 1998, it was renamed Holden Ltd and in May 2005, it became known as GM Holden Ltd. It was purchased by General Motors in 1931 and became General Motors–Holden's Ltd.

Holden began as Holden's Motor Body Builders Ltd., a coachbuilder that made bodies to suit a number of chassis imported from different manufacturers, but particularly Chevrolet. Holden is an Australian car manufacturer, originally independent but now a subsidiary of General Motors. Holden Piazza. Holden Statesman.

Holden Commodore and Calais. Opel Calibra. Opel Vectra. Pontiac LeMans (imported from Daewoo of Korea).

Holden Barina (a rebadged Suzuki Cultus/Swift).

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