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noun in·qui·ry \in-ˈkwī(-ə)r-ē, ˈin-ˌ; ˈin-kwə-rē, ˈiŋ-; ˈin-ˌkwir-ē\

Simple Definition of inquiry

  • : a request for information

  • : an official effort to collect and examine information about something

  • : the act of asking questions in order to gather or collect information

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of inquiry

plural inquiries

  1. 1 :  examination into facts or principles :  research

  2. 2 :  a request for information

  3. 3 :  a systematic investigation often of a matter of public interest

Examples of inquiry in a sentence

  1. Discovered when Galileo Galilei turned the first astronomical telescope to the heavens in 1610, the Jovian system has been a focus of scientific inquiry ever since. —Chad Galts, Brown Alumni Monthly, November 1996

  2. … distinguish between legitimate legislative inquiry into the acts of a man … and illegitimate inquiry into opinions … —Norman Thomas, New Republic, 28 Feb. 1955

  3. … his head was tilted at the precise angle of inquiry as to where he should put Muhlenberg's drink. —Theodore Sturgeon, E Pluribus Unicorn, (1953) 1965

  4. She refused to answer inquiries from the media about her marriage.

  5. The board ordered an inquiry to determine whether the rules had been followed.

  6. Further inquiry showed that he had visited the city twice before.

  7. The police are pursuing a new line of inquiry.

Origin of inquiry

(see inquire)

First Known Use: 15th century

Rhymes with inquiry

INQUIRY Defined for Kids


noun in·qui·ry \ˈin-ˌkwī-rē, -kwə-\

Definition of inquiry for Students

plural inquiries

  1. 1 :  the act of asking a question or seeking information <On further inquiry, we learned his name.>

  2. 2 :  a request for information <The inquiry is confidential.>

  3. 3 :  a thorough examination <an official inquiry>

Law Dictionary


noun in·qui·ry \ˈin-ˌkwīr-ē, in-ˈkwīr-ē; ˈin-kwə-rē, ˈiŋ-\

Legal Definition of inquiry

plural inquiries

  1. 1 :  a request for information <such doubt as would cause a reasonable person to make an inquiry>

  2. 2 :  a systematic official investigation often of a matter of public interest esp. by a body (as a legislative committee) with power to compel testimony

on inquiry
  1. :  having notice that inquiry should be made

Seen and Heard

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expressing little or no emotion

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