There are known fraternal organizations which existed as far back as ancient Greece and in the Mithraic Mysteries of ancient Rome.
Analogous institutions developed in the late medieval period called confraternities, which were lay organizations allied to the Catholic Church.
This period of courtship is sometimes seen as a precursor to engagement or marriage.
The protocols and practices of dating, and the terms used to describe it, vary considerably from country to country and over time.
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Debates about gender and schooling have taken a surprising turn in the past decade.
After years of concern that girls were being shortchanged in male-dominated schools, especially in math and science, there has grown a rising chorus of voices worrying about whether boys are the ones in peril.