From Middle English gospel, gospell, godspel, godspell, goddspell, from Old English godspel (“gospel, glad tidings; one of the four gospels”), corresponding to god + spell (“talk, tale, story”), believed to be an alteration of earlier *gōdspell (literally "good news"), used to translate ecclesiastical Latin bona annuntiatio, itself a translation of Ecclesiastical Latin evangelium / Ancient Greek εὐαγγέλιον (euangelion, “evangel”, literally “good news”). Compare Old Saxon godspel, godspell (“gospel”), Old High German gotspel (“gospel”), Icelandic guðspjall (“gospel”).
gospel (plural gospels)
- The first section of the Christian New Testament scripture, comprising the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, concerned with the life, death, resurrection, and teachings of Jesus.
- An account of the life, death, resurrection, and teachings of Jesus, generally written during the first several centuries of the Common Era.
- A message expected to have positive reception or effect.
- (Protestantism) the teaching of Divine grace as distinguished from the Law or Divine commandments
- (uncountable) gospel music
- (uncountable) That which is absolutely authoritative (definitive).
- If any one thinks this expression hyperbolical, I shall only ask him to read Oedipus, instead of taking the traditional witticisms about Lee for gospel.
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- (obsolete, transitive) To instruct in the gospel.
- (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)
Declension of gospel (type paperi)
gospel m (invariable)