Ancient kiss-tory: First evidence of smooching took place in Middle East 4,500 years ago
COPENHAGEN, Denmark — The origins of kissing date back 4,500 years, a discovery that’s giving researchers insight into disease transmission instead of romance! Researchers in Denmark say the earliest documented evidence of a human kiss comes from Mesopotamia, the historical area that now encompasses present-day Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Syria, and Turkey.
Earlier studies proposed that the first evidence of human lip kissing began specifically in South Asia about 3,500 years ago. From there, it was thought to have spread to other regions, potentially expediting the spread of the herpes simplex virus in the process.
However, this new research, conducted by scholars from the University of Oxford and the University of Copenhagen, suggests that kissing was a cultural practice in the ancient Middle East at least 1,000 years earlier. Based on various written sources from the earliest Mesopotamian societies, Dr. Troels Pank Arbøll and Dr. Sophie Lund Rasmussen discovered that kissing was already a well-established practice 4,500 years ago in the Middle East.