Definition of novice in English:


Line breaks: nov¦ice
Pronunciation: /ˈnɒvɪs


1A person new to and inexperienced in a job or situation: he was a complete novice in foreign affairs
More example sentences
  • The system used is not particularly user friendly for novices or inexperienced staff: this could be improved with more modern software facilities.
  • While the LSO no longer directs the pilot down, he is constantly giving advice if required and can be a calming voice for the inexperienced novice.
  • This annual sporting event takes place on Sunday, May 1 when keen runners and complete novices get together for a five-mile race, a one-mile adult run and a one-mile children's event.
beginner, learner, inexperienced person, neophyte, newcomer, new member, new recruit, raw recruit, new boy/girl, initiate, tyro, fledgling;
North American tenderfoot
informal rookie, new kid, newie, newbie
North American informal greenhorn, punk
1.1An animal, especially a racehorse, that has not yet won a major prize or reached a sufficient level of performance to qualify for important events: last season as a novice he won three races [as modifier]: the novice hurdles
More example sentences
  • It was only fitting that there should be a female winner on Ladies Day and trainer Venetia Williams obliged when Limerick Boy won the novices' hurdle handicap.
  • And there was some consolation for the connections of Limestone Lad when Solerina won the novice hurdle.
  • Captain Christy, ridden by Bobby Beasley, remains the last novice to have won chasing's blue riband event.
2A person who has entered a religious order and is under probation, before taking vows.
More example sentences
  • A friend who is a novice in an Episcopal religious order recently told me that she has no taste now for books of contemporary spirituality.
  • He joined the monastic order as a novice, and studied the Hua-yen ching with Chih-yen.
  • Galileo had a mixed education, starting at a monastery school in Vallombrosa where he entered the order as a novice, against the wishes of his father.


Middle English: from Old French, from late Latin novicius, from novus 'new'.

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