- the part of an artless, innocent, unworldly girl or young woman, especially as represented on the stage.
- an actress who plays such a part or specializes in playing such parts.
Origin of ingénue
Examples from the Web for ingenue
I was no longer "Diane," the ingenue whom she patronized as well as admired.The Bacillus of Beauty
The result is extravagantly and deliciously funny—Just the Book for an Ingenue.Over the Seas for Uncle Sam
Usually, indeed, she is charming in what are called "ingenue" rles.Interpreters
Carl Van Vechten
It was rumored that he and the ingenue—but there, I am not supposed to tell secrets.The Moving Picture Girls
Laura Lee Hope
She suggested an ingenue who had been suddenly sent on in the role of the Russian adventuress.Vera
Richard Harding Davis
- an artless, innocent, or inexperienced girl or young woman
Word Origin and History for ingenue
1848, from French ingénue "artless girl, especially on the stage," fem. of ingénu "ingenuous, artless, simple" (13c.), from Latin ingenuus (see ingenuous). Italicized in English into 20c.