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Still, being overweight is the standard of beauty in Mauritania and some girls’ families choose to send them to fat farms so they will appeal to more men. Once the dowry was complete and the marriage was official, the top would be cut off the thimble and it would then be worn as a ring.

9) Puritans exchanged thimbles instead of engagement rings. The thought was that the gift would be practical for a woman who’s chief job was sewing and mending (and hey, super thoughtful! 10) In 18th century New England, couples used to communicate with a courting tube.

The ritual is linked to fertility, safety of the family, and having a prosperous marriage, so you can understand the pressure.

The closest ritual I can think of for modern Americans is making relationships Facebook official. There’s that, and the age old “Do you like me, circle yes or no” notes we used to pass in elementary school.

Whether they’re ancient, from tribal cultures, or if they’re still practiced today, here’s to rituals for always letting you know where exactly you stand.

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Not exactly permissive in the love department, the early settlers used to demand that young couples who were not yet engaged, if they wished to speak in private, communicate through a courting tube.