natural implies lacking artificiality and self-consciousness and having a spontaneousness suggesting the natural rather than the man-made world.
her unaffected, natural manner
ingenuous implies inability to disguise or conceal one's feelings or intentions.
the ingenuous enthusiasm of children
naive suggests lack of worldly wisdom often connoting credulousness and unchecked innocence.
unsophisticated implies a lack of experience and training necessary for social ease and adroitness.
artless suggests a naturalness resulting from unawareness of the effect one is producing on others.
Examples of naive in a Sentence
Secularism requires a commitment to civil liberty, which rests partly on respect for civil disobedience—peaceful acts of conscience that challenge rules of law. If civil libertarianism is naïve, then so is the hope of secular government.—Wendy Kaminer, Free Inquiry, December 2008/January 2009He exhibits a naïve sort of confidence when talking about the doubts surrounding him and the perceived slights in the draft run-up.—Peter King, Sports Illustrated, 1 May 2006His crimes were described as mere bumps in the road, minor offenses committed by a man-boy described as innocent, naïve, trusting, a simple country boy who got lost in airports and was astonished to find out that he could order a pizza over the phone.—Pat Jordan, Harper's, October 2004
a naive belief that all people are good
a naive view of the world
She asked a lot of naive questions.
I was young and naive at the time, and I didn't think anything bad could happen to me.
The plan seems a little naive.
If you're naive enough to believe him, you'll believe anyone. See More
Recent Examples on the WebExperts accused United Nations officials of being naive for their endorsement of plastic credits, saying that such programs will only justify more production of plastic while at the same time harming residents near incinerators.—Lisa Song, ProPublica, 19 Sep. 2023 Roth isn’t naive about the ways that the current meritocratic sorting process is shaped by and generally reinforces inequalities.—David Perry, Washington Post, 13 Sep. 2023 Turns out, the way a first-timer’s naive attempt at using a pottery wheel might go: imperfect but lovely, reflecting its own wonky sense of originality.—Peter Debruge, Variety, 1 Sep. 2023 Perhaps not so brazen and uncaring, but naive to what the world could be like.—Lexi Pandell, WIRED, 31 Aug. 2023 Editor’s picks Compared to Anita, the Stones were grubby adolescents, awkward and hopelessly naive.—Elizabeth Winder, Rolling Stone, 24 July 2023 Rival candidates accused him of being either naive about international policy or shamelessly exploiting an increasingly isolationist bent in the GOP to advance his political standing.—Carlos De Loera, Los Angeles Times, 29 Aug. 2023 Such books often can be naive and sentimental, especially to a reader like me, whose kids are long past this stage of life.—Washington Post Staff, Washington Post, 25 Aug. 2023 Sometimes naive but often brave, Ahsoka was ambitious and held plenty of promise as a would-be Jedi Master herself.—Eric Francisco, Men's Health, 22 Aug. 2023 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'naive.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.
French naïve, feminine of naïf, from Old French, inborn, natural, from Latin nativus native
: showing lack of experience or knowledge : credulous
from French naïve "having a natural simplicity and honesty," from early French naïf "being part of the nature of a person from birth, native, inborn," from Latin nativus "native," from natus, past participle of nasci "to be born" — related to native