philematology

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

A United States Navy specialist who had returned from a deployment kissing his wife while their son engages in philematology.

Probably formed in English from the Ancient Greek φῐ́λημᾰ (phílēma, a kiss) +‎ -ology, but compare the New Latin philēmatologiā, which appears written in Greek as φιληματολογία in the title of a 1659 book.[1]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

philematology (uncountable)

  1. The scientific study of kissing. [from early 20th c.]
    • 1901, Christopher Nyrop; William Frederick Harvey, transl., “Love Kisses”, in The Kiss and Its History, London: Sands & Co., 12 Burleigh Street, Strand, OCLC 563483200, page 49:
      The Italians use the expression baciare co' denti (kiss with the teeth) to signify "to love." We can only treat these kisses as a sort of transitional link, of shorter or longer duration, according to circumstances. They are, as it were, "a sea fraught with perils," which in Mlle. [Madeleine] de Scudéry's celebrated letter (la carte de tendre), carries one to strange countries (les terres inconnues); but, as these countries lie outside the regions of pure philematology, I shall not pursue my investigations further.
    • 2010, Michael J. Rosen; Ben Kassoy; M. Sweeney Lawless, “Waking Up on the Right Side of the Bed”, in Any Body’s Guess!: Quirky Quizzes about What Makes You Tick, Kansas City, Mo.: Andrews McMeel Publishing, ISBN 978-0-7407-8991-5, page 170:
      Although philematology (the art and science of lip-locking) remains largely unstudied, researchers have proven that kissing not only decreases levels of cortisol, a chemical that creates stress, but also increases oxytocin, a chemical that heightens feelings of affection and potentially fights depression and disease.
    • 2011, Nicole Conn, Elena Undone, Tallahassee, Fla.: Bella Books, ISBN 978-1-59493-254-0:
      "Now the flip side of this whole kissing as exercise thing is that, like, hundreds of bacteria are exchanged in a kiss—so you know …" she extended her arms in a balancing gesture, "it's all risk-benefit and yeah, all in the name of philematology—that's the actual scientific term used for the study of kissing. Oh and get this, a woman has usually kissed about seventy-nine men before she finally settles and gets married."
    • 2013, Marcel Danesi, The History of the Kiss!: The Birth of Popular Culture (Semiotics and Popular Culture), New York, N.Y.; Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN 978-1-137-37683-1:
      There's a lot riding on a kiss, as work in philematology suggests, since the act appears to set off a complex set of chemical reactions that enhance romantic feelings and make physical acts like sexual intercourse much more meaningful.

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ [Jacobus Herrenschmidius] (1659) Speculum φιληματολογίας [philēmatologías]. cùm Sacræ tùm profanæ: Per quæstiones aliquot ex variis multorum monumentis non minus ad voluptatem quam utilitatem S.S. Theologiæ & Philologiæ Studiosorum concinnatum operâ & studio. [Mirror of Philematology. Both Sacred and Profane: From Various Memories of Many through a Few Questions Prepared with Study and Work no Less for the Pleasure of the Studiers of Holy Theology and Philology than for Their Use], [Wittenberg, Germany]: Sumptibus Friderici Bergeri Bibl. [At the expense of the library of Friedrich Berger (?)], OCLC 935086979, title page.

Further reading[edit]