adjective, god·li·er, god·li·est.

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 formsgod·li·ness, noun

Synonyms for godly

Antonyms for godly

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for godliness

sanctity, virtue, piety

Examples from the Web for godliness

Contemporary Examples of godliness

Historical Examples of godliness

  • Ireland is badly off for soap, and cleanliness is next to godliness.

    Ireland as It Is

    Robert John Buckley (AKA R.J.B.)

  • Most of the temples in Benares, too, are as far from cleanliness as they are from godliness.

  • Perhaps a god might fall in love with a mortal without losing his godliness.


    William Morrison

  • Everything you want of life, everything you want for godliness.

  • All things that pertain to life, all things that pertain to godliness.

British Dictionary definitions for godliness


adjective -lier or -liest

having a religious character; pious; devouta godly man
Derived Formsgodliness, 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

Word Origin and History for godliness

1530s, from godly + -ness.



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

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper