noun in·di·ca·tor \ˈin-də-ˌkā-tər\

: a sign that shows the condition or existence of something

: a pointer or light that shows the state or condition of something

: a device that shows a measurement

Full Definition of INDICATOR

:  one that indicates: as
a :  an index hand (as on a dial) :  pointer
b (1) :  gauge 2b, dial 4a
(2) :  an instrument for automatically making a diagram that indicates the pressure in and volume of the working fluid of an engine throughout the cycle
a :  a substance (as litmus) used to show visually (as by change of color) the condition of a solution with respect to the presence of a particular material (as a free acid or alkali)
b :  tracer 4b
:  an organism or ecological community so strictly associated with particular environmental conditions that its presence is indicative of the existence of these conditions
:  any of a group of statistical values (as level of employment) that taken together give an indication of the health of the economy
in·dic·a·to·ry \in-ˈdi-kə-ˌtr-ē\ adjective

Examples of INDICATOR

  1. Economic indicators suggest that prices will go up.
  2. a control panel with various indicator lights

First Known Use of INDICATOR


Related to INDICATOR

hand, index, pointer, needle

Rhymes with INDICATOR

abdicator, abnegator, activator, actuator, adulator, advocator, agitator, alligator, allocator, animator, annotator, applicator, arbitrator, aspirator, aviator, brachiator, buccinator, calculator, calibrator, captivator, carburetor, castigator, circulator, commentator, commutator, compensator, compurgator, concentrator, confiscator, congregator, consecrator, consummator, contemplator, corporator, correlator, cultivator, decorator, defalcator, delegator, demonstrator, denigrator, depredator, desecrater, designator, detonator, deviator, dissipater, dominator, dura mater, educator, elevator, emulator, escalator, estimator, excavator, explicator, expurgator, extirpator, fabricator, fascinator, figure skater, flocculator, formulator, fornicator, fractionator, fumigator, generator, gladiator, hesitater, hibernator, imitator, immolator, impregnator, incubator, infiltrator, in-line skater, innovator, inhalator, inspirator, instigator, insulator, integrator, lacrimator, liberator, liquidator, literator, lubricator, macerator, masticator, mediator, mitigator, moderator, modulator, motivator, mutilator, navigator, nomenclator, nominator, numerator, obturator, operator, orchestrator, oscillator, peculator, percolator, perforator, perpetrator, pia mater, pollinator, postulator, procreator, procurator, promulgator, propagator, punctuator, radiator, re-creator, remonstrator, renovator, resonator, respirator, revelator, roller skater, rubricator, rusticator, salivator, second-rater, selling-plater, separator, simulator, stimulator, subjugator, Sunset Crater, syncopator, syndicator, tabulator, terminator, vaccinator, vacillator, valuator, venerator, ventilator, vindicator, violator, vitiator
INDICATOR Defined for Kids


noun in·di·ca·tor \ˈin-də-ˌkā-tər\

Definition of INDICATOR for Kids

:  a sign that shows or suggests the condition or existence of something
:  a pointer on a dial or scale
:  1dial 3, gauge
Medical Dictionary


noun in·di·ca·tor \ˈin-də-ˌkāt-ər\

Medical Definition of INDICATOR

:  a substance (as a dye) used to show visually usually by its capacity for color change the condition of a solution with respect to the presence of free acid or alkali or some other substance (as in detecting the end point of a titration) <litmus and phenolphthalein are acid-base indicators>
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears