ingenue

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See also: ingénue

English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from French ingénue, the feminine form of ingénu (guileless), originally from the Latin ingenuus (ingenuous).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

ingenue (plural ingenues)

  1. An innocent, unsophisticated, naïve, wholesome girl or young woman.
  2. (theater, film) A dramatic role of such a woman; an actress playing such a role.
    Hypernym: stock character
    Coordinate terms: girl next door, femme fatale, damsel in distress
    • 2012, Thomas Lisanti, Hollywood Surf and Beach Movies: The First Wave, 1959-1969, McFarland (→ISBN), page 396:
      The intelligent and talented blonde who was fluent in English, French and Spanish was interested in art and joined a local theater group to work on set designs but wound up on stage playing an ingenue in Liliom and was spotted by director Vincente Minnelli.
  3. (rare) Misspelling of ingenu.
    • 1951 June 11, Ickes, Harold L., “Acheson, Political Ingenue”, in 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, Gonsalves, Joshua David, “What Makes Lord Byron Go? Strong Determinations-Public/Private-of Imperial Errancy”, in 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, McFadden, Kevin, “It's a Cue, the Name”, in Poetry, volume 188, number 5, page 417:
      America why callow ingenue bile?

Usage notes[edit]

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.)

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


Italian[edit]

Adjective[edit]

ingenue f pl

  1. feminine plural of ingenuo

Noun[edit]

ingenue f

  1. plural of ingenua

Anagrams[edit]


Latin[edit]

Adjective[edit]

ingenue

  1. vocative masculine singular of ingenuus

References[edit]

  • ingenue in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • ingenue in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • ingenue in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire illustré Latin-Français, Hachette