Synonyms of naive in English:
I was very naive to begin with, but I learnt fast
innocent, unsophisticated, artless, ingenuous, inexperienced, guileless, unworldly, childlike, trusting, trustful, dewy-eyed, starry-eyed, wide-eyed, fond, simple, natural, unaffected, unpretentious;
gullible, credulous, easily taken in, easily deceived, unsuspecting, over-trusting, over-trustful, born yesterday, unsuspicious, deceivable, dupable, immature, callow, raw, green, as green as grass, ignorant
informal wet behind the ears
[Antonyms] sophisticated, disingenuous, experienced, worldly
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naive, artless, ingenuous
Naive is by far the most common of these adjectives. It is generally used critically or pityingly of people lacking experience, wisdom, or judgement, or of their actions ( the rather naive young man had been totally misled | it may be naive to think that much of the population really believes specific election pledges). It can, however, also be used more approvingly of a person seen as natural and unaffected ( Andy had a sweet, naive look when he smiled).Ingenuous is a more literary term, expressing approval or acceptance of people or actions that are innocent and unsuspecting ( an ingenuous young art student, fresh from college).Artless is quite rare and means ‘without guile or deception’, the opposite of the much more common artful ( what she knew of him was picked up from his wife's artless prattle). Again approvingly, it can mean ‘without effort or pretentiousness’ ( the children had been directed to give very real, artless performances). However, an older sense denoting things or actions that are considered to lack aesthetic imagination or practical skill is enjoying a revival ( this awful, artless building).
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