A history of dating

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In Northern European Jewish culture from the Middle Ages until even the 20th century, families arranged marriages where the love of the two young people was a prominent factor.

However, not every couple was so lucky, and this may be one reason courtship developed.

This is quite different from the freedoms experienced by young people today.

We have more options now; “love” is almost always the universal premise for marriage, particularly in Western cultures.

Growing more nervous as the minutes pass, he sets his items on the table and tries to adjust his tie. A lovely young woman wearing a long, elegant dress gracefully enters and stops a few feet from the young man, directing him to a chair.

In the other doorway stands the young woman’s mother and father.

Laughable perhaps, but several hundred years ago that was a common reality.

The dating process of today is different in structure and purpose than it was in the era when “courting” was the operative word.

The door opens and he is ushered into a large, well-furnished room.

They cordially greet the young man then retreat through the door, leaving it slightly ajar.

The young lady seats herself and the young man picks up the bouquet, clears his throat and … As he reaches to pick up the box, he remembers that his tie is still askew and he tries to fix it, dropping the bouquet in the process. Testing his slapstick comedy act for the local drama club?

A nervous young man arrives at the door of a majestic brownstone townhouse.

He carries a small wood box containing a silver bracelet and ring, and a bouquet of resplendent burgundy tulips.

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