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A calque (or in some cases a continuation) of the Middle English undeadlinesse, vndeedlinesse, undeadlichnesse, from Old English undēadlīcnes (immortality), equivalent to undeadly +‎ -ness; compare the German Unsterblichkeit, a compound formed the same way.


undeadliness (uncountable)

  1. The condition of not being susceptible to death; immortality.
    • 1852, A Modern English Version of King Alfred's Blossom-Gatherings from Saint Augustine, in The whole works of King Alfred the Great, volume 2, page 83:
      Although the holy fathers, who were before us, very certainly knew about that which thou formerly askedst; that is, about the undeadliness of men's souls, which was very clear in this that they naught doubted, [...]
    • 1875, Emily Sarah Holt, The White Rose of Langley: a story of the court of England in the olden time, page 2:
      "If a man might die, and have done with it all! But to meet God! And 'tis no sweven,1 ne fallacy, this dread undeadliness2 — it is real."
      1. Dream 2. Immortality.
    • 1880, Richard Robert Madden, Farewell lines to an old friend, in The Memoirs (chiefly autobiographical) from 1798 to 1886 of Richard Robert Madden (1891), page 152:
      to find the same / Old traits of time’s undeadliness and fame / In Dante’s visions, and in Shakespeare’s lore, / And Chaucer’s quaint and graphic strains of yore.
    • 1929, a work by Walter Hilton (p. 1350, a. 1396,), translated into English by Dorothy Jones in Minor works of Walter Hilton:
      So is the righteous man white in cleanness of soul, and therefore shall he have a white stole of undeadliness in the high Lebanon that is the bliss of heaven.
    • 1957, Richard of Saint Victor, Benjamin (p. 1154, a. 1162,), Capitulum VII, translated into English Ray C. Petry in Late Medieval Mysticism, page 106:
      He that dwelleth between the terms hath near-hand forsaken deadliness, but not fully, and hath near-hand gotten undeadliness, but not fully.
    • 2007, The Cloude of Unknowyng (p. 1350, a. 1400,), translated into English by Evelyn Underhill in The Cloud of Unknowing:
      To this will I answer thee, that He had been dead, and was clad with undeadliness, and so shall we be at the Day of Doom.