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An example use of waif in a speech by a native speaker of american english:
“… fluttering arms of waif like ballerinas …”
meanings of waif
A castaway; a homeless child.
Goods found of which the owner is not known; originally, such goods as a pursued thief threw away to prevent being apprehended, which belonged to the king unless the owner made pursuit of the felon, took him, and brought him to justice.
A plant that has been introduced but is not persistently naturalized.
Hence, anything found, or without an owner; that which comes along, as it were, by chance.
A minor celebrity who does not deserve his or her fame.