Definitions

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

  • adjective Immature, especially in being silly or trivial; childish. synonym: young.
  • adjective Archaic Belonging to childhood; juvenile.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Of or pertaining to a boy or child; boyish; childish; juvenile.
  • Hence Merely childish; lacking intellectual force; trivial: as, a puerile criticism.
  • Synonyms Juvenile, Boyish, etc. (see youthful).
  • Weak, foolish, silly.

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

  • adjective Boyish; childish; trifling; silly.

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

  • adjective Characteristic of, or pertaining to, a boy or boys; confer: puellile.
  • adjective Childish; trifling; silly.

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

  • adjective of or characteristic of a child
  • adjective displaying or suggesting a lack of maturity

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Latin puerīlis, from puer, child, boy; see pau- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin puerīlis ("childish"), from puer ("child, boy").

Examples

  • Maitland in his _Account of the Early Printed Books at Lambeth_, 1843, already takes occasion to animadvert on what he terms the puerile competition for rarities, which had then set in.

    The Book-Collector A General Survey of the Pursuit and of those who have engaged in it at Home and Abroad from the Earliest Period to the Present Time

  • Your example of email being maligned as puerile is just a case in point.

    Re: e(-)mail « Motivated Grammar

  • I view Goodling's use of the word as an attempt to deny responsibility for her actions by seeing herself in puerile terms.

    Balkinization

  • I view Goodling's use of the word as an attempt to deny responsibility for her actions by seeing herself in puerile terms.

    Balkinization

  • I view Goodling's use of the word as an attempt to deny responsibility for her actions by seeing herself in puerile terms.

    Balkinization

  • I view Goodling's use of the word as an attempt to deny responsibility for her actions by seeing herself in puerile terms.

    Balkinization

  • I view Goodling's use of the word as an attempt to deny responsibility for her actions by seeing herself in puerile terms.

    Balkinization

  • I view Goodling's use of the word as an attempt to deny responsibility for her actions by seeing herself in puerile terms.

    Balkinization

  • I view Goodling's use of the word as an attempt to deny responsibility for her actions by seeing herself in puerile terms.

    Balkinization

  • I view Goodling's use of the word as an attempt to deny responsibility for her actions by seeing herself in puerile terms.

    Balkinization

Comments

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  • Puer is the Latin word for boy.

    August 7, 2008