court·​ship | \ ˈkȯrt-ˌship How to pronounce courtship (audio) \

Definition of courtship

: the act, process, or period of courting

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Synonyms for courtship


courting, dating, lovemaking, suit

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Examples of courtship in a Sentence

They had a two-year courtship before marrying. The male of the species often displays aggression during courtship. the President's courtship of middle-class voters
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Recent Examples on the Web

And Henry and Anne’s whole courtship begins and ends on a jewel. Stellene Volandes, Town & Country, "Anne Boleyn's Lost "B" Necklace Is One of the Great Jewelry Mysteries," 4 Mar. 2019 The usual rites of courtship happened at warp speed, magnified by Grande and Davidson’s visibility and collective wealth. Eliza Brooke, Vox, "What will become of the engagement ring Pete Davidson gave Ariana Grande?," 15 Oct. 2018 The courtship comes at an exciting time for the Duggar family: Jinger is due to welcome her first child, a baby girl, with Vuolo this month. Aurelie Corinthios,, "Jinger Duggar Says Brother John David's Smile Is 'Brighter' Now That He's Courting Abbie Burnett," 3 July 2018 With the field now narrowed to a fortunate several, the courtship will involve more personal touches. Dennis Lin,, "Padres among finalists for Shohei Ohtani," 3 Dec. 2017 Democrats hoping to defeat President Donald Trump are engaged in a furious courtship of congressional newcomers, a sign of the energy the freshmen bring to a party looking for a new generation of leaders, direction and know-how. Laurie Kellman, The Seattle Times, "Belles of the ball: Dem freshmen courted by 2020 hopefuls," 19 Feb. 2019 Plus, as Prachi Gupta of Jezebel notes, short engagements are fairly standard in Indian culture, making the length of Chopra and Jonas’s courtship not particularly noteworthy. E.j. Dickson, Vox, "The controversy over Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas’s wedding, explained," 5 Dec. 2018 After a long courtship, the couple married at Westminster Abbey in 2011 in a ceremony which was attended by celebrities, dignitaries, and royals from across Europe. The Editors, Town & Country, "The British Royal Family Tree," 19 May 2018 It's been a whirlwind courtship for the Jurassic Park and Guardians of the Galaxy actor and the author. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Chris Pratt and Katherine Schwarzenegger," 14 Jan. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'courtship.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of courtship

1596, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for courtship

Last Updated

25 May 2019

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Time Traveler for courtship

The first known use of courtship was in 1596

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More Definitions for courtship



English Language Learners Definition of courtship

somewhat old-fashioned : the activities that occur when people are developing a romantic relationship that could lead to marriage or the period of time when such activities occur
: the behavior of animals that leads to sexual activity or the period of time when such behavior occurs
: an attempt to convince someone to support you or to choose you or your organization


court·​ship | \ ˈkȯrt-ˌship How to pronounce courtship (audio) \

Kids Definition of courtship

: the act of seeking the love or companionship of someone

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Comments on courtship

What made you want to look up courtship? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a strong desire or propensity

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