Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Like or befitting a child, as in innocence, trustfulness, or candor.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Resembling a child or that which is proper to childhood; becoming to or characteristic of a child; hence, submissive, dutiful, trustful, artless, inexperienced, etc.
  • Synonyms Childlike, Childish, Infantile, Infantine. Childlike and childish express that which is characteristic of a child, the former applying to that which is worthy of approbation, or at least does not merit disapproval, and the latter usually to that which is not: as, a childlike freedom from guile; a childish petulance. To express that which belongs to the period of childhood, without qualifying it as good or bad, child or childhood is often used in composition: as, child-toil, childhood-days. Infantile and infantine are applied to the first stages of childhood; no clear distinction between them has yet been established. See youthful.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Resembling a child, or that which belongs to children; becoming a child; meek; submissive; dutiful.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective innocent and trustful; credulous; artless
  • adjective of, like, or suitable for a child; meek; submissive

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective exhibiting childlike simplicity and credulity
  • adjective befitting a young child

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

child +‎ -like

Examples

  • The right-hand page shows in childlike handwriting the first lines of his poem “Pastoral”: “The little sparrows/hop ingenuously/about the pavement/quarreling.”

    2009 January 28 « One-Minute Book Reviews

  • All but Violet, who stood amazed, slowly pushing up her Mardi Gras mask to reveal an expression of childlike wonder.

    Darkness Becomes Her

  • Old Ebbits looked at me in childlike wonder, while Zilla sneered openly at the absurdity of my question.

    THE WHITE MAN'S WAY

  • Old Ebbits looked at me in childlike wonder, while Zilla sneered openly at the absurdity of my question.

    The White Man's Way

  • All but Violet, who stood amazed, slowly pushing up her Mardi Gras mask to reveal an expression of childlike wonder.

    Darkness Becomes Her

  • All but Violet, who stood amazed, slowly pushing up her Mardi Gras mask to reveal an expression of childlike wonder.

    Darkness Becomes Her

  • The right-hand page shows in childlike handwriting the first lines of his poem “Pastoral”: “The little sparrows/hop ingenuously/about the pavement/quarreling.”

    2009 January « One-Minute Book Reviews

  • Shiva: Yes, I think Elfed Lied would be right up your alley, the childlike comes from the Japanese tradition which for the most part, even men don't have facial hair, or much facial hair, but also just the style - I think except for a few characters most of the characters were between 11-18 if that helps.

    Up and down, crash and burn: nightcare to job hunt to darkness

  • Old Ebbits looked at me in childlike wonder, while Zilla sneered openly at the absurdity of my question.

    The White Man's Way

  • Ericsen was rubbing his huge hands in childlike glee.

    Charley's "Coup"

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