Definition of waif:
- A wanderer; a castaway; a stray; 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.
- Hence, anything found, or without an owner; that which comes along, as it were, by chance.
The silky shock of yellow curls was lifted, the wide eyes stared wonderingly first at Beryl's face bending near, then at the cat; and by degrees, the lovely waif suffered an arm to draw her farther and farther, while her rose- red mouth parted in a smile, that showed six little teeth, and with one hand fastened in the cat's fur, she was finally lifted and borne away; Beryl's soft cheek nestled against hers, the bronzed head bent down to the yellow ringlets; one arm holding the baby and the cat, while the other white hand closed warmly over the child's bare, cold, dimpled feet.- "At the Mercy of Tiberius", August Evans Wilson.
- "The Life of Thomas Wanless, Peasant", Alexander Johnstone Wilson.
- "Mabel's Mistake", Ann S. Stephens.