Greek Dating Habits

by Elizabeth Burns
Arranged marriages, such as those by Muslims, match couples with similar religious and social backgrounds.

Arranged marriages, such as those by Muslims, match couples with similar religious and social backgrounds.

Greek women and men enjoy a reputation for being warm, friendly and beautiful. Traditionally, young couples were introduced to one another by their families and their dates were chaperoned until they were married. However, many young people in Greece now prefer to meet people through work and social activities.

Traditional Dating

It is a Greek tradition for young men and women to be introduced to one another by their families. The young people meet at the home of the matchmaker, usually a family member, and a date is arranged if they like the looks of one another. Traditionally, the young lovers would have been chaperoned, but this is no longer common. The courting couple also would have spent a lot of time getting to know one another's family.

Modern Dating

Many young Greek people prefer to find their own life partner without their parents' intervention, usually through work and socializing. However, many Greek women still enjoy old-fashioned courtship, and wining and dining them and giving them flowers demonstrates that romantic gestures never go out of fashion.

Ancient Greece

Courtship rituals in ancient Greece were very elaborate. Sue Blundell, in her book, "Women In Ancient Greece," reveals that marriage contests, where many suitors vie for the hand of one woman, were common in Bronze Age Greece. A famous example involves Cleisthenes, tyrant of Sicyon, in early sixth century BC. He spent a year entertaining the 13 suitors for the hand of his daughter Agariste, subjecting them to wrestling matches, chariot races and personal interviews.

Online Dating

The Internet has changed dating habits worldwide and Greeks are no exception. Greek dating websites help Greek people to get together and are useful for those who live and work abroad but still want to meet and marry someone from their own country. The Internet exemplifies the modern trend for young Greek men and woman to choose their own partners.

Considerations

Someone who is dating, or considering dating, a Greek man or woman should remember that they have their own customs and traditions. Greek people, for example, care about family values. The extended family offers a strong support network and, if you are dating someone from Greece, she may expect you to respect and to be supportive of her family.

About the Author

Based in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Elizabeth Burns began writing professionally in 1988. She has worked as a feature writer for various Irish newspapers, including the "Irish News," "Belfast News Letter" and "Sunday Life." Burns has a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from the University of Ulster as well as a Master of Research in arts.

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