Etymology: Middle English, from Old English gōd; akin to Old High German guot good, Middle High German gatern to unite, Sanskrit gadhya what one clings to
Date: before 12th century
(1) of a favorable character or tendency <good news> (2) bountiful, fertile <good land> (3) handsome, attractive <good looks> b. (1) suitable, fit <good to eat> (2) free from injury or disease <one good arm> (3) not depreciated <bad money drives out good> (4) commercially sound <a good risk> (5) that can be relied on <good for another year> <good for a hundred dollars> <always good for a laugh> (6) profitable, advantageous <made a very good deal> c. (1) agreeable, pleasant <had a good time> (2) salutary, wholesome <good for a cold> (3) amusing, clever <a good joke> d. (1) of a noticeably large size or quantity ; considerable <won by a good margin> <a good bit of the time> (2) full <waited a good hour> (3) — used as an intensive <a good many of us> e. (1) well-founded, cogent <good reasons> (2) true <holds good for society at large> (3) deserving of respect ; honorable <in good standing> (4) legally valid or effectual <good title> f. (1) adequate, satisfactory <good care> — often used in faint praise <his serve is only good — Frank Deford> (2) conforming to a standard <good English> (3) choice, discriminating <good taste> (4) containing less fat and being less tender than higher grades — used of meat and especially of beef 2. a. (1) virtuous, right, commendable <a good person> <good conduct> (2) kind, benevolent <good intentions> b. upper-class <a good family> c. competent, skillful <a good doctor> d. (1) loyal <a good party man> <a good Catholic> (2) close <a good friend> e. free from infirmity or sorrow <I feel good> • goodish adjective Usage: An old notion that it is wrong to say “I feel good” in reference to health still occasionally appears in print. The origins of this notion are obscure, but they seem to combine someone's idea that good should be reserved to describe virtue and uncertainty about whether an adverb or an adjective should follow feel. Today nearly everyone agrees that both good and well can be predicate adjectives after feel. Both are used to express good health, but good may connote good spirits in addition to good health. II. noun Date: before 12th century 1. a. something that is good b. (1) something conforming to the moral order of the universe (2) praiseworthy character ; goodness c. a good element or portion 2. a. advancement of prosperity or well-being <the good of the community> <it's for your own good> b. something useful or beneficial <it's no good trying> 3. a. something that has economic utility or satisfies an economic want b. plural personal property having intrinsic value but usually excluding money, securities, and negotiable instruments c. plural cloth d. plural something manufactured or produced for sale ; wares, merchandise <canned goods> e. plural, British freight 4. good persons — used with the 5. plural a. the qualities required to achieve an end b. proof of wrongdoing <didn't have the goods on him — T. G. Cooke> III. adverb Date: 13th century 1. well <he showed me how good I was doing — Herbert Gold> 2. — used as an intensive <a good 200 pounds> <a good long time> Usage: Adverbial good has been under attack from the schoolroom since the 19th century. Insistence on well rather than good has resulted in a split in connotation: well is standard, neutral, and colorless, while good is emotionally charged and emphatic. This makes good the adverb of choice in sports <“I'm seeing the ball real good” is what you hear — Roger Angell>. In such contexts as <listen up. And listen good — Alex Karras> <lets fly with his tomatoes before they can flee. He gets Clarence good — Charles Dickinson> good cannot be adequately replaced by well. Adverbial good is primarily a spoken form; in writing it occurs in reported and fictional speech and in generally familiar or informal contexts.
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.