babe

[ beyb ]
/ beɪb /

noun

a baby or child.
an innocent or inexperienced person.
(usually initial capital letter) Southern U.S. (used, often before the surname, as a familiar name for a boy or man, especially the youngest of a family.)
Slang.
  1. Sometimes Disparaging and Offensive.a girl or woman, especially an attractive one: Her roommate is a real babe!
  2. an attractive young man.
  3. (sometimes initial capital letter)an affectionate or familiar term of address (sometimes offensive when used to strangers, casual acquaintances, subordinates, etc., especially by a male to a female).

Nearby words

  1. babbler,
  2. babbling,
  3. babbling brook,
  4. babblingly,
  5. babcock test,
  6. babe in arms,
  7. babe in the woods,
  8. babe-in-a-cradle,
  9. babel,
  10. babel, tower of

Idioms

    babe in the woods, an innocent, unsuspecting person, especially one likely to be victimized by others: Some highly informed people are mere babes in the woods where the stock market is concerned.Also babe in the wood.

Origin of babe

1150–1200; 1915–20 for def 4; Middle English; early Middle English baban, probably nursery word in origin

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


British Dictionary definitions for babe in the woods

babe

/ (beɪb) /

noun

a baby
informal a naive, gullible, or unsuspecting person (often in the phrase a babe in arms)
informal a young woman or man perceived as being sexually attractive
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 babe in the woods

babe

n.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with babe in the woods

babe in the woods

An innocent or very naive person who is apt to be duped or victimized, as in She was a babe in the woods where the stock market was concerned. The term originated in a popular ballad of 1595, “The Children in the Wood,” about two young orphans who are abandoned in a forest and die.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.