Dates are a sweet fruit that grow on the date palm. Mostly likely originating near the Persian Gulf, date palms have been a staple food source in the Middle East and northern Africa for thousands of years. They were introduced to Mexico and California by Spaniards in the mid-18th century. The name 'date' derives from the Greek word daktulous because of the fruit's elongated shape. Dates are popular either fresh or dried.
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