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See also: godspeed, God-speed, and God speed


Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English god spede, god speid ((adverb) quickly, speedily; (interjection) may God cause (someone) to succeed),[1][2] from god, God ((Christianity) God; the Eucharist; non-Christian god or goddess; idol; deity, divine being; person or thing honoured as a god)[2] (from Old English god (god), ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *ǵʰew- (to pour), in the sense of a libation made to a god) + sped, spede, the singular subjunctive of speden (to achieve one’s goal; to succeed (in something); to fare, get along; to conduct oneself well; to do well, prosper, thrive; to turn out well; to be advantageous, avail; to be of benefit or useful; to assist, help; to help (someone) be successful; to do or complete (something); to travel rapidly; to progress)[3] (from Old English spēdan (to succeed), ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *speh₁- (to prosper, succeed)).[4]




  1. (literary) Used, especially at a parting, to express the wish that the outcome of the actions of a person (typically someone about to start a journey or a daring endeavour) is positive for them.
    Synonyms: all the best, (archaic) fare thee well, farewell, goodbye, good luck

Related terms[edit]


See also[edit]


Godspeed (countable and uncountable, plural Godspeeds) (literary)

  1. (uncountable) The wishing of someone a smooth journey, or success, especially at a parting; (countable) a statement expressing this.
  2. (countable, figuratively)
    1. (archaic) Chiefly in in the Godspeed of: the most important part of something, or point at which something happens; also, the last minute or last moment.
    2. (originally Ireland) In back of Godspeed: a distant, remote, or unknown place.
      Synonym: back of beyond
      • 1858, Anthony Trollope, “Frank Gresham’s First Speech”, in Doctor Thorne. [], volume I, London: Chapman & Hall, [], →OCLC, page 124:
        If I don't leave you at the back of God-speed before long, I'll give you the mare and the horse too.
      • 1908 (date written), [George] Bernard Shaw, “Getting Married”, in The Doctor’s Dilemma, Getting Married, & The Shewing-Up of Blanco Posnet, London: Constable and Company, published 1911, →OCLC, Act, page 278:
        mrs george. I have earned the right to speak. I have dared: I have gone through: I have not fallen withered into the fire: I have come at last out beyond, to the back of Godspeed. / the bishop. And what do you see there, at the back of Godspeed?



  1. ^ gọ̄d spẹ̄de, gọ̄̆d-spẹ̄de, phr. & n.”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
  2. 2.0 2.1 “[god] spede” under “God, god, n.(1)”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
  3. ^ spẹ̄den, v.”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
  4. ^ Compare Godspeed, n.”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, December 2022; Godspeed, excl.”, in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press, 2019–2022.

Further reading[edit]