The word for today is…

posthaste (adj) – With great speed; rapidly.

(noun) – (Archaic) Great speed; rapidity.

Source : The Free Dictionary

Etymology : In the 16th century, the phrase “haste, post, haste” was used to inform posts (as couriers were then called) that a letter was urgent and must be hastily delivered. Posts would then speedily gallop along a route with a series of places at which to get a fresh horse or to relay the letter to a fresh messenger. William Shakespeare was one of the first to use a version of the phrase adverbially in Richard II. “Old John of Gaunt … hath sent post haste / To entreat your Majesty to visit him,” the Bard versified. He also used the phrase as an adjective (a use that is now obsolete) in Othello: “The Duke … requires your haste-post-haste appearance,” Lieutenant Cassio reports to the play’s namesake. Today, the word still possesses a literary flair attributable to the Bard.




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Peter is a fourth-generation New Zealander, with his mother's and father's folks having arrived in New Zealand in the 1870s. He lives in Lower Hutt with his wife, two cats and assorted computers. His work history has been in the timber, banking and real estate industries, and he's now enjoying retirement. He has been interested in computers for over thirty years and is a strong advocate for free open source software. He is chairman of the SeniorNet Hutt City committee.