Use the noun goodwill just the way it sounds, to describe friendliness or helpfulness. Giving your subway seat to an elderly man is a gesture of goodwill.

Goodwill can also be spelled as two separate words, good will, but either way it joins good, from the Old English word for "virtuous," god, and will, in Old English willa, or "wish." So when you wish someone well — when you feel friendly or compassionate — you have goodwill toward that person.

Definitions of goodwill
  1. noun
    a disposition to kindness and compassion
    synonyms: good will, grace
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    type of:
    good nature
    a cheerful, obliging disposition
  2. noun
    the friendly hope that something will succeed
    synonyms: good will
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    type of:
    a feeling of liking for another person; enjoyment in their company
  3. noun
    (accounting) an intangible asset valued according to the advantage or reputation a business has acquired (over and above its tangible assets)
    synonyms: good will
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    type of:
    intangible, intangible asset
    assets that are saleable though not material or physical
Word Family
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