Hugs and Kisses

Hugs and Kisses

Hugs and Kisses also known as Love and Kisses is a term for a sequence of the letters "X" and "O", e.g. "XOXO", typically to express affection or good friendship at the end of a written letter, email or text message. [cite web | title = Oxford English Dictionary - X| publisher = Oxford University press | date = 1999 | url = | accessdate = 2007-02-01] [cite web | title = | url=] [cite web | title = | url =] [cite web | title = | url =]

It is debatable which letter represents which act. One interpretation assumes that "X" represents the four lips of a kiss and "O" the four arms of a hug. For example, the Oxford English Dictionary states that X is "used to represent a kiss, esp. in the subscription to a letter." [cite web | title = Oxford English Dictionary - X| publisher = Oxford University press | date = 1999 | url = | accessdate = 2007-02-01] Another interpretation assumes "X" as the crossed arms of a hug and "O" as the puckered lips of a kiss,Fact|date=July 2007 as the order is normally spoken "Hugs and Kisses" which would correspond to the order that the x's and o's are written. Also, it could be said that the X's are the arms crossing during a hug, and the O's are the circular shape that two people make when kissing. Additionally, there is another interpretation, based on the pronunciation of the letters "X" (sounds like 'kiss') and "O" (sounds like 'hold', as in 'I hold you').

[Note: The following paragraph seems to draw upon customs in a certain part of the (ancient) world for its interpretation of XOXO. It does not, however, state this explicitly.]

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. An "X" at the end of a letter or document was often kissed as a seal of honesty, in much the same way one would kiss a Bible or kiss the fingers after making the sign of the Christian cross. Thus the "X" came to represent a kiss in modern times.Fact|date=July 2007

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.

In popular culture

*Elliott Smith utilized XO on his album "XO"
*Australian Designer modernizes Love & Kisses as XOXO in a symbol of unity with XOXO designed as two figures interlocking from an overhead perspective.
*At the end of teen group Aly and AJ's music video for "Potential Breakup Song", the screens reads "XOXO, Aly & AJ".
*In "The Deposition", an episode from the US version of The Office Michael's diary is read, and he signs XOXO
* In Trisha Yearwood's 1995 single "XXX's and OOO's (An American Girl)" she sang about a young young woman who used to "sign her letters with X's and O's."
* The Swedish rapist Hagamannen used "XOXO" as his personal signature.
* In Christina Aguilera's single from 2007, Candyman, Aguilera signs off with "Xoxo, Candy" at the end of the video.
* In the video to pop-singer Gavin DeGraw's single from 2008, In Love with a Girl, DeGraw holds up a cellphone which shows the text "I'm here! XOXO."
* Fall Out Boy titled a song, the last song from the album "From Under the Cork Tree", "XO." When asked why the title had nothing to do with the song, Pete Wentz replied sarcastically, "Oh yeah, because that song has "nothing" to do with hugs and kisses."
*In Gossip Girl, the gossip girl ends her monologue at the end of an episode with, "you know you love me. xoxo gossip girl."


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