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Friday, July 13, 2007

"at both endes"

In W. Smith's The Hector of Germany, or, The Palsgrave, Prime Elector (1615), a play primarily concerned with 14th- and 17th-century European politics, there is a comic interlude between an Englishman and a Frenchman. As the two jokers are comparing their respective knowledges of the world, the conversation turns to women and the kissing styles of different nations.
Englishman: Now wee are in the discourse of women,
What Countrey-women doest thou loue best?
Frenchman: I loue none.
Englishman: I loue all, and to kisse them after the fashion of all Nations.
Frenchman: Why I pray sir, doe not all Nations kisse alike?
Englishman: You are no Traueller, and therefore Ile beare with your ignorance: but know this, your Spanyard, as hee is prowde, he kisses prowdly, as if hee scornde the touch of a Ladies lippe; marry you Frenchmen draw it in, as if hee would swallow her aliue: Now the Italian has soone done with the vpper parts, to be tickling of the lower: and we Englishmen can neuer take enough at both endes. (sig. H1r)
Umm, "at both endes"? Is that upper and lower? Or front and back? Or both?

Regardless, I think the English definitely win the title of Kinkiest Kissers in Early Modern Europe, at least if W. Smith is to be believed.

  • At 7/24/2007 08:18:00 AM, Anonymous Spurio wrote…

    Hello, just found you all thanks to a tip from a friend, and am dropping in to say that if this blog were a person, I would be using a pick-up line along the lines of, where have you been all my life?

    Also, if you're still looking for play summaries, I'd be happy to contribute summaries of any of the following plays which have recently given me much joy: William Hemings/Heminge’s Fatal Contract (printed 1637; discovered in my "for a good time read everything Fredson Bowers hates" phase); J.W.'s Valiant Scot (printed 1637); Chapman's Gentleman Usher (1606); Anon's A Larum for London (1602); or "Yarington's" Two Lamentable Tragedies (1599-1600). I haven’t cross-checked with Holzknecht, though ... what is't you lack?

    Thanks for blogging!

     

  • At 7/24/2007 10:21:00 PM, Blogger Simplicius wrote…

    Hi Spurio, I'm glad you found us! Any summaries you'd like to contribute, we'd be happy to link to and/or cross post (or, if you don't have a blog of your own, to publish here on your behalf). All those plays look great, not least because I've only read one of them (maybe two).

    "For a good time read everything Fredson Bowers hates"--brilliant!

     


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