From earlier holesome, from Middle English holsom, holsum, helsum, halsum, from Old English *hālsum, *hǣlsum, from Proto-Germanic *hailasamaz, equivalent to whole + -some. Cognate with Dutch heilzaam, Icelandic heilsamur, Norwegian Nynorsk helsesam, Swedish hälsosam (“wholesome”).
- Promoting good physical health and well-being.
- c. 1590–1592, William Shakespeare, “The Taming of the Shrew”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act IV, scene iii], page 223, column 2:
- I prethee go, and get me ſome repaſt, / I care not what, ſo it be holſome foode.
- Promoting moral and mental well-being.
- 1750, Thomas Morell (lyrics), George Frideric Handel (music), “'Theodora'”:
- Though hard, my friends, yet wholesome are the truths, taught in affliction's school, whence the pure soul rises refined, and soars above the world.
- Favourable to morals, religion or prosperity; sensible; conducive to good; salutary; promoting virtue or being virtuous.
- Marked by wholeness; sound and healthy.