The day is finally here, the last day of 2014. And to celebrate, people around the world will be attending parties, watching fireworks, staying in and popping champagne.
No matter what you are doing, there is one tradition that goes with every NYE champagne toast out there: the midnight kiss. We all do it, and if we aren’t coupled up we’re looking for someone to do it with when the countdown starts.
But why do we do it? Where did this tradition come from?
To secure your love life
The Encyclopedia of Superstitions notes a superstition that seems to have been around forever and is of unknown origins. It claims that if you are single and don’t kiss someone on New Year’s Eve, you will have a whole year of loneliness. So to keep from being a sad lonely spinster all year, you better get out there and kiss someone—anyone.
To keep friends close and strangers just as close
In Scotland, kissing at midnight is a real tradition called Hogmanay. The idea is that in the New Year, you should show hospitality to friends and strangers alike. SO unlike our North American tradition of just kissing one person on NYE, in Scotland, it’s customary to kiss every single person that is in the room with you.
To get rid of evil spirits
If you are heading to a masquerade ball for New Year’s, you may be able to get rid of all those pesky evil spirits that have been trailing you all year. For hundreds of years, Europeans have held masquerade balls for the holidays. The masks that they wear symbolized the evil spirits and it was said that a kiss after the removal of the mask represented purification.
To honour Roman tradition
The Roman festival of Saturnalia was held every December to celebrate the coming of the New Year. Traditionally there was a lot of kissing and touching involved (like most Roman festivals). Some researchers think that the New Year’s kiss is a more reserved twist on this tradition.
To seal the deal
Whether you are in a relationship or are looking to make things “official” with that special someone, English and German tradition holds that kissing the one you love on New Year’s Eve will guarantee you an entire year of their love.
So if you are looking to keep the fire burning in your current relationship or if you are looking to take things to the next level with a special someone, make sure you pucker up on New Year’s Eve.