See also: Innocent

English

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Alternative forms

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Etymology

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From Middle English innocent, from Old French inocent, borrowed from Latin innocens (harmless, inoffensive), from in- (not) + nocēns, present participle of noceō (to hurt). Displaced native Old English unsċyldiġ.

Pronunciation

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Adjective

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innocent (comparative more innocent, superlative most innocent)

  1. Free from guilt, sin, or immorality.
    I'm sure there's an innocent explanation for all this.
    The situation certainly looked bad, but it turned out that everything was innocent.
    • c. 1606 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Macbeth”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies [] (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act IV, scene iii], line 16:
      to offer up a weak, poor, innocent lamb to appease an angry god
    • 2018 September 26, Brian Karem, "Bethesda Resident Describes "Culture Of Privilege" Leading To Exploitation And Abuse" in The Montgomery County Sentinel[1]
      "These were not innocent times," she said.
  2. Bearing no legal responsibility for a wrongful act.
  3. Without wrongful intent; accidental or in good faith.
    He didn't mean anything by it; it was an innocent mistake.
    The child's innocent question revealed the embarrassing truth in front of everyone.
  4. Naive; artless.
  5. (obsolete except medicine) Not harmful; innocuous; harmless; benign.
    • 1715–1720, Homer, [Alexander] Pope, transl., “Book XXII”, in The Iliad of Homer, volumes (please specify |volume=I to VI), London: [] W[illiam] Bowyer, for Bernard Lintott [], →OCLC:
      The spear / Sung innocent, and spent its force in air.
    • 2006, David J. Driscoll, Fundamentals of Pediatric Cardiology, page 43:
      Although an innocent murmur is not an obstacle to participation in sports and exercise, a pathologic murmur may necessitate restrictions on the child's physical activity.
  6. (with of) Lacking (something), or knowledge of it.
    • 1960 September, “Talking of Trains: Progress at Stafford”, in Trains Illustrated, page 522:
      At the beginning of July Stafford station was innocent of buildings, except for a couple of coach bodies to house the staff, but the temporary accommodation to cover the period of building the new station was well on the way to completion.
    • 1983, Judith Martin, Miss Manners' Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior, section XVII:
      Her only slight comfort is that they are not as bad as the new litter of Awful children who resulted from this marriage, Lisa, Adam, Jason, and Kristen. By all reports, they are entirely innocent of manners of any kind.
  7. Lawful; permitted.
    an innocent trade
  8. Not contraband; not subject to forfeiture.
    innocent goods carried to a belligerent nation

Synonyms

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Antonyms

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  • (antonym(s) of bearing no legal responsibility for a wrongful act): guilty, nocent
  • (antonym(s) of naive): perverse

Derived terms

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Translations

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The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Noun

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innocent (plural innocents)

  1. One who is innocent, especially a young child.
    The slaughter of the innocents was a significant event in the New Testament.
  2. (obsolete) A harmless simple-minded person; an idiot.

Catalan

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Etymology

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Borrowed from Latin innocentem (harmless, inoffensive).

Pronunciation

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Adjective

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innocent m or f (masculine and feminine plural innocents)

  1. innocent

Derived terms

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Further reading

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French

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Etymology

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From Old French inocent, borrowed from Latin innocentem (harmless, inoffensive, from in- (not) +‎ nocēns (present participle of noceō (to hurt))).

Pronunciation

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Adjective

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innocent (feminine innocente, masculine plural innocents, feminine plural innocentes)

  1. innocent

Derived terms

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Noun

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innocent m (plural innocents, feminine innocente)

  1. an innocent person
  2. (figurative) a naive person
  3. (Quebec) a stupid or foolish person

Further reading

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