1. pleasurably conforming to notions of good appearance, suitability, or proportion 2. pleasing and wholesome in appearance; attractive
Funny word, comely. So close to homely, but so different in meaning. The New Yorker quotes Richard Wilbur using the word in a Paris Review interview: “To put it simply, I feel that the universe is full of glorious energy, that the energy tends to take pattern and shape, and that the ultimate character of things is comely and good. I am perfectly aware that I say this in the teeth of all sorts of contrary evidence, and that I must be basing it partly on temperament and partly on faith, but that is my attitude.” Richard Wilbur is one of my favorite poets, by the way. His new book is available at amazon.com now.