Hugs and Kisses also known as Love and Kisses is a term for a sequence of the letters X and O, e.g. XOXO, typically used to express affection or good friendship at the end of a written letter or email.
It is debatable which letter represents which act. The less common interpretation assumes that X represents the four lips of a kiss and O the four arms of a hug. For example, the Oxford English Dictionary states that X is "used to represent a kiss, esp. in the subscription to a letter." A more common interpretation assumes X as the crossed arms of a hug and O as the puckered lips of a kiss. Also, the order is normally spoken "Hugs and Kisses" which would correspond to the order that the x's and o's are written. Additionally, there is a another interpretation, based on the pronunciation of the letters X (sounds like 'kiss') and O (sounds like 'hold', as in 'I hold you').
The use of XOXO goes back to the use of an X or cross, which was considered as good as a sworn oath in times before most people could write and therefore used the X in the same way a signature is used today - a mark of one's word. An X at the end of a letter or document was often kissed as a seal of honesty, in much the same way one would kiss a Bible or kiss the fingers after making the sign of the Christian cross. Thus the X came to represent a kiss in modern times.
The origins of the O as a hug are not generally known, although it is speculated that it may represent the arms wrapped around someone being hugged.
This article is based on "Hugs and Kisses" from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org). It is licensed under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation Licencse. In the Wikipedia you can find a list of the authors by visiting the following address: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Hugs+and+Kisses&action=history