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See also: naive



From French naïve, feminine of naïf.


naïve (comparative naïver or more naïve, superlative naïvest or most naïve)

  1. Alternative spelling of naive.
  2. (rare) Feminine of naïf.
    • 1924 July, Paul Morand, “Paris Letter”, in Scofield Thayer, editor, The Dial, volume LXXVII, Camden, N.J.: The Dial Publishing Company, Inc., published 1924 September, page 241:
      He has his own definite qualities of composition: a naïf grace, a deft handling of forms, and the introduction of variations into landscapes, figures, or the eyes of American sailors. [] In this room, blue as a tunnel with stagnant smoke, naïve girls dance with the directors of musical reviews.
    • 1928 March 10, Ernest Boyd, “Readers and Writers”, in The Independent: A Weekly Journal of Free Opinion, volume 120, number 4058, New York, N.Y., page 235, columns 2–3:
      The passages are alike because (1) the person who is supposed to be writing is illiterate; and because (2) she or he is naïf and engagingly childish. [] Gertrude Stein may be falsely naïve, but what are two realistic satirists of American types, like Anita Loos and Ring Lardner, doing in such a category?
    • 2009, Richard Cody, “Fiduciary” (chapter III), in Perfect Witness: Being a Sequel to a Tale of 1951 Entitled ‘Neighbouring Eyes’, [Bloomington, Ind.]: Xlibris, →ISBN, page 46:
      Don’t be naïve, Valija. You’re letting sexual feelings think for you, as usual. [] His worst pretence is a faith in good manners. This may make him, in some respects, a snob. But if any one of us is naïf, it is not I; it is he—and in the best possible way.
    • 2014, Brother Tom [i.e., Thomas Paonessa], “Essence”, in The Angel and the Rowboat, Bloomington, Ind.: AuthorHouse, →ISBN, part II (The Problem), page 129:
      His faux naïf had her completely fooled. [] Profoundly naïve, she had absolutely no experience of pain or suffering or death and saw nothing in the odd reptilian-skinned stranger but the opportunity to make a new friend.

Usage notes[edit]

  • Naive/naïve is most often treated as gender-neutral. Usage of both naïf and naïve, the latter specifically for women, following French, is rare.
  • See naive § Usage notes for the use of the diaeresis.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


naïve (plural naïves)

  1. Alternative spelling of naive.

Further reading[edit]




  • IPA(key): /na.iv/
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  1. feminine singular of naïf