Dating is a stage of romantic relationships in which two people engage in an activity together, usually with the intention of assessing the other's suitability as a potential partner in a future intimate relationship. According to Merriam Webster, dating someone means making a generally romantic social arrangement to meet that person. As can be inferred from the definition, dating is generally considered a form of courtship, and consists of social activities conducted by the couple, either alone or with other people. Although customs and protocols vary greatly from culture to culture, it is generally accepted that the ultimate goal is marriage or a serious relationship.
And while it may seem like dating has always been around, particularly in the West, its history is actually shorter and more interesting than many people think.