Dictionary.com

naive

or na·ïve

[ nah-eev ]
/ nɑˈiv /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: naive / naively on Thesaurus.com

adjective
having or showing a lack of experience, judgment, or information; credulous: She's so naive she believes everything she reads.He has a very naive attitude toward politics.
having or showing unaffected simplicity of nature or absence of artificiality; unsophisticated; ingenuous.
having or marked by a simple, unaffectedly direct style reflecting little or no formal training or technique: valuable naive 19th-century American portrait paintings.
not having previously been the subject of a scientific experiment, as an animal.
QUIZ
WILL YOU SAIL OR STUMBLE ON THESE GRAMMAR QUESTIONS?
Smoothly step over to these common grammar mistakes that trip many people up. Good luck!
Question 1 of 7
Fill in the blank: I can’t figure out _____ gave me this gift.

Origin of naive

First recorded in 1645–55; from French, feminine of naïf, Old French naif “natural, instinctive,” from Latin nātīvus native

usage note for naive

This word is spelled with a dieresis over the i (ï) in French, indicating that it is a separate vowel sound. Many people retain this spelling when writing in English.

OTHER WORDS FROM naive

na·ive·ly, adverbna·ive·ness, nounun·na·ive, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use naive in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for naive

naive

nave naf

/ (naɪˈiːv) /

adjective
  1. having or expressing innocence and credulity; ingenuous
  2. (as collective noun; preceded by the)only the naive believed him
artless or unsophisticated
lacking developed powers of analysis, reasoning, or criticisma naive argument
another word for primitive (def. 5)
noun
rare a person who is naive, esp in artistic styleSee primitive (def. 10)

Derived forms of naive

naively, navely or nafly, adverbnaiveness, naveness or nafness, noun

Word Origin for naive

C17: from French, feminine of naïf, from Old French naif native, spontaneous, from Latin nātīvus native, from nasci to be born
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
FEEDBACK