ingenue (plural ingenues)
- An innocent, unsophisticated, naïve, wholesome girl or young woman.
- A dramatic role of such a woman; an actress playing such a role.
- An innocent, unsophisticated, naïve, wholesome person.
1951 June 11, Harold L. Ickes, “Acheson, Political Ingenue”, The New Republic, volume 124, number 24, page 17:
- Mr. Acheson's failure as Secretary of State ... has been an inability to understand people or to be understood by them.
2002 Spring, Joshua David Gonsalves, “What Makes Lord Byron Go? Strong Determinations-Public/Private-of Imperial Errancy”, Studies in Romanticism, volume 41, number 1, Psychoanalytic, page 40fn:
- I cannot resist citing, slightly out of context, another bit of Baudelaire: "Satan s'est fait ingénu" (Satan has made himself into an ingenue [Oeuvres Completes 640]).
2006 September, Kevin McFadden, “It's a Cue, the Name”, Poetry, volume 188, number 5, page 417:
- America why callow ingenue bile?
The corresponding masculine term, ingenu, is poorly known, and so the feminine term is sometimes used in a gender-neutral or masculine way. (See the 2002 citation, where the explicit masculine French is feminized in English.)
ingenue f pl
- feminine plural of
- plural form of
- vocative masculine singular of