God’s in his heaven, all’s right with the world

The standard form is an expression of satisfaction (see quot. 1841), which has now largely replaced the consolatory God is where he was.

1530 J. PALSGRAVE L’éclaircissement de la Langue Française 213 Neuer dispayre man, god is there as he was.

1612 T. SHELTON tr. Cervantes’ Don Quixote I. IV. iii. God is in heaven.

1678 J. RAY English Proverbs (ed. 2) 147 God is where he was. Spoken to encourage People in any distress.

1841 R. BROWNING Works (1970) 327 The snail’s on the thorn: God’s in his heaven—All’s right with the world.

1906 R. KIPLING Puck of Pook’s Hill 240 Cheer up, lad... God’s where He was.

1928 E. WAUGH Decline & Fall I. v. When you’ve been in the soup as often as I have, it gives you a sort of feeling that everything’s for the best, really. You know, God’s in His heaven; all’s right with the world.

1983 P. MORTIMER Handyman xv. When she heard his car draw up, on the dot of seven, it was as though she had been injected with a great feeling of calm, a reassurance that God was in his heaven and all [was] right with her world.

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