Why do we kiss under the mistletoe?

Mistletoe-kissKissing under the mistletoe first started with the Greek festival of Saturnalia and later with primitive marriage rites. Other myths say it is a tradition that has been passed on through the generations since the time of the Druids, Celts and the Norse. The Druids believed the mistletoe had great powers, especially when it grew on oak trees, as oaks were sacred to the Druids.

Another belief was that Mistletoe has the power to bestow fertility. Mistletoe was also regarded a plant of peace, under which enemies could declare a truce or fighting spouses kiss and make-up.

During the 18th century, the English credited the mistletoe a certain magical appeal called a kissing ball. During Christmas time a young lady standing under a ball of mistletoe trimmed with ribbons and ornaments could not be refused a kiss. Such a kiss could mean deep romance or lasting friendship and goodwill.

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