Definition of God Save the King/Queen noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


God Save the King/Queen

; NAmE
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the British national anthem (= song) Word Originevidence suggests a 17th-cent. origin for the complete words and tune of the British national anthem. The ultimate origin is obscure: the phrase “God save the King” occurs in various passages in the Bible, while as early as 1545 it was used as a sign for safe conduct in the navy, with the reply “long to reign over us.” CultureGod Save the QueenIt is not known who wrote the words or the music, but it was already a traditional song in the 18th century. When the country has a king, the word ‘Queen’ is replaced by ‘King’. The song has several verses, but usually only the first verse is sung:
God save our gracious Queen,Long live our noble Queen,God save the Queen.Send her victorious,Happy and glorious,Long to reign over us;God save the Queen.