Goodwife, usually abbreviated Goody, was a polite form of address for women of lower social standing in the 1600s, formerly used where "Missus" (Mrs.), "Miss" and Ms. would be used today. Its male counterpart is Goodman.

The terms were used in England and Puritan New England. They are perhaps best known today as the forms of address used in Arthur Miller's historical fiction "The Crucible", and in Nathaniel Hawthorne's famous short story "Young Goodman Brown".

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  • Goodwife — Good wife , n. The mistress of a house. [Archaic] Robynson (More s Utopia). [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • goodwife — [good′wīf΄] n. pl. goodwives [good′wīvz΄] [ME: see GOOD & WIFE] Archaic 1. a wife or a mistress of a household 2. a title equivalent to Mrs., applied to a woman ranking below a lady …   English World dictionary

  • goodwife — adjective (A title of respect for a woman). Goodwife Hopkins Syn: Mrs …   Wiktionary

  • Goodwife — adjective (A title of respect for a woman). Goodwife Hopkins Syn: Mrs …   Wiktionary

  • goodwife — noun Date: 13th century 1. archaic the mistress of a household 2. archaic Mrs …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • goodwife — /good wuyf /, n., pl. goodwives / wuyvz /. 1. Chiefly Scot. the mistress of a household. 2. (cap.) Archaic. a title of respect for a woman. [1275 1325; ME; see GOOD, WIFE] * * * …   Universalium

  • goodwife — n. mistress of a house (Archaic) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • goodwife — noun (plural goodwives) archaic, chiefly Scottish the female head of a household …   English new terms dictionary

  • goodwife — n. 1. Goodwoman, goody, gammer. 2. Wife, housewife, mistress of the house …   New dictionary of synonyms

  • goodwife — good·wife …   English syllables

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