child·​like | \ ˈchī(-ə)l(d)-ˌlīk How to pronounce childlike (audio) \

Definition of childlike

: resembling, suggesting, or appropriate to a child or childhood especially : marked by innocence, trust, and ingenuousness childlike delight

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Other Words from childlike

childlikeness noun

Examples of childlike in a Sentence

a grown woman with a childlike face We gazed at it in childlike wonder. She took a childlike glee in describing every detail.
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Recent Examples on the Web

There’s a childlike quality to rainbow ensembles, exuding a sense of carefree happiness — look at how happy Leomie Anderson is! Tatum Dooley, Teen Vogue, "Calling It Now, Rainbow Dresses Are The Next Big Thing," 29 May 2019 As much as the color and art inspired the design, so did looking at each nook of the room with a sense of childlike wonder. Candace Braun Davison, House Beautiful, "Every Inch of This House Is Designed to Inspire You," 10 Apr. 2019 The aim of the KIDDO collection has always been to entice viewers and transport them to a place of childlike wonder. Brittney Morgan, House Beautiful, "New Ravenna's KIDDO Collection Is the Most Enchanting Tile You'll Ever See," 26 Mar. 2019 Everything is as if carved out of wood, generic, childlike and artificial—disquieting if not futile. Lance Esplund, WSJ, "‘Metaphysical Masterpieces 1916-1920: Morandi, Sironi, and Carrà’ Review: Every Object’s Mysteries," 16 Jan. 2019 The real-life Mark comes off as a good guy with a checkered past, not so much childlike as shaky in his grip on adulthood. Joe Morgenstern, WSJ, "‘Welcome to Marwen’ Review: An Excess of Fantasy," 20 Dec. 2018 That piece happened to be a recreation of her young son’s notebook, but there’s a childlike quality to all such art. Dan Duray, ELLE Decor, "Is Nostalgia in the Art World Ever a Good Thing?," 29 Aug. 2018 Lucia Bok is a magnetic woman who approaches life with a sparkling grandiosity, childlike and impulsive. Steph Cha, USA TODAY, "Two sisters, bound by love and mental illness, in 'Beautiful' debut novel," 16 Jan. 2018 Aries, March 21–April 19 As the first sign in the zodiac circle, Aries has a youthful, childlike energy that needs to be released in a healthy way. Alice Bell, Vogue, "The Best Gifts for Every Astrological Sign on Your List," 26 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'childlike.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of childlike

1577, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for childlike

Last Updated

18 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for childlike

The first known use of childlike was in 1577

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More Definitions for childlike



English Language Learners Definition of childlike

: resembling or suggesting a child : like that of a child especially : having or showing the pleasing qualities (such as innocence) that children often have


child·​like | \ ˈchīld-ˌlīk How to pronounce childlike (audio) \

Kids Definition of childlike

1 : like that of a child a childlike voice
2 : showing the more pleasing qualities (as innocence and trustfulness) often thought to be those of children childlike wonder

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More from Merriam-Webster on childlike

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with childlike

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for childlike

Spanish Central: Translation of childlike

Nglish: Translation of childlike for Spanish Speakers

Comments on childlike

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