Mr. Ahmadinejad’s was a classic osculum. Mr. Gere’s was probably an osculum playfully masquerading as a basium that, unfortunately for Mr. Gere, may have looked a little too much like a savium on TV.
From this story by Paul Vitello about the many cultural meanings of a kiss -- particularly one done (implemented? carried out? executed? planted?) in public. Among other things, we learn that:
The earliest written record of humans’ kissing appears in Vedic Sanskrit texts — in India — from around 1500 B.C., where certain passages refer to lovers “setting mouth to mouth,” according to Mr. Bryant.