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See more synonyms for artless on Thesaurus.com
  1. free from deceit, cunning, or craftiness; ingenuous: an artless child.
  2. not artificial; natural; simple; uncontrived: artless beauty; artless charm.
  3. lacking art, knowledge, or skill.
  4. poorly made; inartistic; clumsy; crude: an artless translation.
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Origin of artless

First recorded in 1580–90; art1 + -less
Related formsart·less·ly, adverbart·less·ness, noun


See more synonyms for artless on Thesaurus.com
1. naive, unsophisticated, guileless, open, frank, plain, unaffected, candid, sincere.


1. cunning.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for artless

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Milza endeavoured, in her own artless way, to soothe the distress her words had excited.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • Flora, who had been spoiled and artless long ago, was determined to be spoiled and artless now.

    Little Dorrit

    Charles Dickens

  • Some of the inscriptions were so artless as to provoke a smile.

  • "I thought you knowed everything, father," said the artless boy.

    A Tale of Two Cities

    Charles Dickens

  • Edwin had received from nature the gift of an honest and artless eloquence.


    William Godwin

British Dictionary definitions for artless


  1. free from deceit, guile, or artfulness; ingenuousan artless remark
  2. natural, without artifice; unpretentiousartless elegance
  3. without art or skill
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Derived Formsartlessly, adverbartlessness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for artless


1580s, "unskillful," from art (n.) + -less. Later also "uncultured" (1590s); then "unartificial, natural" (1670s) and "guileless, ingenuous" (1714). Related: Artlessly; artlessness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper