Kiss and tell refers to the act of revealing one’s intimate relationships and the secrets of their partners publicly.
The phenomenon became especially popular with the rise of tabloid magazines, revolving around the private life of famous people.
The expression originates from the 1600’s, with one of the earliest cases emerging in the 167 work of Charles Cotton, titled “Burlesque”.
“Kiss and tell” is a phrase that is both metaphorical and literal; it presents a person that kissed someone and went to tell everyone, while the kiss aspect of the expression eludes to all the finer details of a romantic relationship.
Throughout the centuries, “kiss and tell” would be a common phrase in English, being the number one destroyer of relationships and friendships already during the industrial revolution.
It would gain further popularity in the 20th century, with the appearance of the first celebrities, whose secrets became the primary product of tabloids and later reality shows.
“Kiss and tell” was first defined on Urban Dictionary in 2004.
- Urban Dictionary – Kiss and tell