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Line breaks: naughty
Pronunciation: /ˈnɔːti

Definition of naughty in English:

adjective (naughtier, naughtiest)

1(Especially of a child) badly behaved; disobedient: you’ve been a really naughty boy
More example sentences
  • Sometimes it's like being a school teacher with a multitude of naughty children to look after.
  • I wasn't a very naughty child generally, so this was quite out of character.
  • If your child is naughty, maybe it is the parents that are at fault.
2 informal Mildly rude or indecent, typically because related to sex: naughty goings-on
More example sentences
  • It was used to greatest effect when it makes the actors say rude or naughty things.
  • Explicit language makes a lot of us squirm because it's chock full of taboos: It's crude, it's naughty, it's raunchy, its real.
  • The lyrics to this very hummable song are extremely naughty, not smutty or crude, just enjoyably naughty.
informal blue, raunchy
British informal fruity, near the knuckle, saucy
North American informal gamy
euphemistic adult
3 archaic Wicked.
Example sentences
  • The Future Bible Heroes' new album is in very real danger of being a good deed in a naughty world, as this interview suggests.
badly behaved, disobedient, bad, misbehaved, misbehaving, wayward, defiant, unruly, insubordinate, wilful, self-willed, delinquent, undisciplined, unmanageable, uncontrollable, ungovernable, unbiddable, disorderly, disruptive, mutinous, fractious, refractory, recalcitrant, errant, wild, wicked, obstreperous, difficult, troublesome, awkward, contrary, perverse, attention-seeking, exasperating, incorrigible;
bad-mannered, rude, impolite;
mischievous, full of mischief, playful, impish, roguish, puckish, rascally, prankish, tricksy
informal brattish, scampish
Scottish informal gallus
archaic contumacious


late Middle English: from naught + -y1. The earliest recorded sense was 'possessing nothing'; the sense 'wicked' also dates from late Middle English, and gave rise to the current senses.


the naughty step

(also the naughty corner) British informal
A place where a child is sent after misbehaving in order to reflect on their actions: whenever I did something bad, my uncle would make me sit in the naughty corner
More example sentences
  • Kemal recently had to sit on the naughty step for putting a toilet brush into Roberto's cardboard box.
  • Parenting groups have taken issue with the suitability of the naughty step or "time out" method to discipline children.
  • The naughty step, is a place of reflection where the child realises they've done something wrong.
1.1A situation of public disgrace: the bosses of the unions found themselves on the naughty step
More example sentences
  • Oh, my, then the whole British internet has to go and sit on the naughty step.
  • In her monthly guide to subversive parenting, Jennie Bristow sends today's parenting fads and panics to the naughty step.
  • As a nation, we're heading for the naughty step.



Example sentences
  • Drinking coffee at night still seems naughtily bohemian in this city, and there's an undercurrent of guilty complicity in the air.
  • ‘You're right,’ Aidan agreed and smiled rather naughtily.
  • Lynn winks naughtily at him, and Clark's smile broadens.


Example sentences
  • She has the knack of bringing out the naughtiness in people…
  • There's an awful lot of rude words in it, a lot of swearing, a lot of naughtiness.
  • He had a very highly developed sense of humour and naughtiness.

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