Remember the fictional International Order of the Friendly Sons of the Raccoons that Ralph and Norton belonged to in The Honeymooners? Their official club greeting was to sound “Woooo” and then wiggle the raccoon tail on their caps. Well that order can’t hold a candle to the very real Order of the Pug, a Masonic-type lodge for Catholics in the the 18th century. The porcelain snuff box pictured above was designed as emblems of the lodge. (If you have a spare 12,000 to 18,000 pounds laying around, it goes up for auction in July at Bonhams in London.)
Here’s the lowdown on the order:
Members were called Pugs.
New members being initiated into the order were required to wear a dog collar–wait, it gets better–and gained entrance to the lodge by scratching on the door.
Then the initiates were hooded so they couldn’t see and led around a symbol-filled carpet while members barked at them between shouts of “Memento mori” (Latin for “Remember you shall die.”).
The final bit to the ceremony involved the Pug wannabe kissing the backside of a porcelain pug dog. (Kinky, huh?)
Why was the pug chosen over all other beasts? For its loyalty, trustworthiness, and steadiness.
Unfortunately, the Order of the Pugs was outlawed in 1748. I say bring it back. Pablo kindly offers up his butt to be kissed.