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courtship

[kawrt-ship, kohrt-] /ˈkɔrt ʃɪp, ˈkoʊrt-/
noun
1.
the wooing of one person by another.
2.
the period during which such wooing takes place.
3.
solicitation of favors, applause, etc.
4.
Ethology. behavior in animals that occurs before and during mating, often including elaborate displays.
5.
Obsolete. courtly behavior; courtesy; gallantry.
Origin of courtship
1580-1590
1580-90; court + -ship
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for courtship
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The courtship is sometimes a prolonged affair, and many males and females congregate at an appointed place.

  • Let us take one example—the courtship of the Argus pheasant.

    The Truth About Woman C. Gasquoine Hartley
  • Pinney told him all about his courtship and married life, and what a prize he had drawn in Mrs. Pinney.

    The Quality of Mercy W. D. Howells
  • But the courtship, such as it was, appears to have been long, and the effects of the loss indelible.

    Sir Walter Scott George Saintsbury
  • Not unfrequently the time of service is that of courtship also, and the servants eventually marry the daughters of the house.

    The Bible in Spain George Borrow
British Dictionary definitions for courtship

courtship

/ˈkɔːtʃɪp/
noun
1.
the act, period, or art of seeking the love of someone with intent to marry
2.
the seeking or soliciting of favours
3.
(obsolete) courtly behaviour
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for courtship
n.

1570s, "behavior of a courtier," from court (n.) + -ship. Meaning "paying court to a woman with intention of marriage" is from 1590s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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16
18
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