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[god-lee] /ˈgɒd li/
adjective, godlier, godliest.
conforming to the laws and wishes of God; devout; pious.
coming from God; divine.
Origin of godly
before 1000; Middle English; Old English godlīc. See God, -ly
Related forms
godliness, noun
1. religious, saintly, holy, righteous, good.
1. wicked, impious. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for godly
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The creatures, yf they had their owne will, would destroy the wicked and save the godly alone.

    Diary of John Manningham John Manningham
  • What manner of reputation, think you, that for a captain of the godly army of the Commonwealth?

    The Tavern Knight Rafael Sabatini
  • If love will not draw you to their mind to be ungodly, why should you think love will draw them to your mind to be godly?

  • These godly persons were apprehended by Mr. Noone, a justice in Suffolk.

  • A pretty nest of godly rogues I have got into,” said the traveller: “there will be an iron gag for your foul mouths soon.

  • Then, further, the new Israelite is to cherish the grace of godly fear.

  • To conform to one or two habits of godly people is not what is required of us; but to be at heart godly.

  • Mr. Grant sames a godly man, any way, and his garrel a hommble on; and a devout.

    The Pioneers James Fenimore Cooper
  • If he is godly, and consecrated, and upright, his people will become increasingly so.

British Dictionary definitions for godly


adjective -lier, -liest
having a religious character; pious; devout: a godly man
Derived Forms
godliness, noun
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 godly

late 14c., from god + -ly (1).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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