I’m struggling to find the word on google or reverse lookup that has to do with cute features, such as small arms, big eyes, basically the juvenile look nearly every animal has that elicits a care response in adults.

It might sound something like neurism or eural, it’s on the tip of my tongue.

Edit for mods that closed this for off topic: needed it for a poem where the sound of the word actually is important.

Example sentence:
The claimed president
Of the economy
Delusioned a bit
Hands spell ______

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    Childlike or maybe childish, though that tends more towards describing behavior. Jul 12, 2021 at 21:56
  • 1
    Why was this question closed? Aug 10, 2021 at 15:06
  • 1
    It is explained in the closure message. You did not give a sentence where you would use the word.
    – fev
    Aug 10, 2021 at 15:07
  • I think puerile?
    – jimm101
    Aug 10, 2021 at 15:38
  • Related: synonym for child-like {adult} Aug 10, 2021 at 15:55

3 Answers 3


You might be looking for neoteny

The retention of juvenile characteristics in the adults of a species

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    That’s it! Thanks! And I see the official definition is not how I heard it being used. It looks like it’s officially used to mean adults with juvenile traits, but where i heard it was using it as juvenile traits even in juveniles. Jul 12, 2021 at 18:51
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    Neoteny is a process but its result is called paedomorphism.
    – alamar
    Jul 13, 2021 at 8:20

In amine / manga and general Japanese culture this is referred to as kawaii:

Kawaii (Japanese: かわいい or 可愛い, IPA: [kaɰaiꜜi]; 'lovely', 'loveable', 'cute', or 'adorable')1 is the culture of cuteness in Japan.[2][3][4] It can refer to items, humans and non-humans that are charming, vulnerable, shy, and childlike.[2] Examples include cute handwriting, certain genres of manga, and characters including Hello Kitty and Pikachu.[5][6]
The cuteness culture, or kawaii aesthetic, has become a prominent aspect of Japanese popular culture, entertainment, clothing, food, toys, personal appearance, and mannerisms.[7]


In German there's the term Kindchenschema and checking several translation websites they suggest one of the following terms in English (in no particular order):

  • schema/scheme of childlike characteristics / childlike schema/scheme (dict.cc, leo.org, linguee.com)
  • cuteness [small child pattern] (dict.cc, also backed by wikipedia)
  • baby schema (pons.de, also kinda backed by wikipedia)
  • baby face (linguee.com)


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