in·​di·​cate | \ ˈin-də-ˌkāt How to pronounce indicate (audio) \
indicated; indicating

Definition of indicate

transitive verb

1a : to point out or point to
b : to be a sign, symptom, or index of the high fever indicates a serious condition
c : to demonstrate or suggest the necessity or advisability of indicated the need for a new school the indicated treatment
2 : to state or express briefly indicated a desire to cooperate

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Examples of indicate in a Sentence

Our records indicate a depth of 3,000 feet here. The map indicates where the treasure is buried. There is nothing to indicate that the two events are connected. The size of his offer indicates that he is eager to buy the house. The general used a long ruler to indicate on the map exactly where the troops would land. We asked how to get to the rear entrance, and he indicated a path leading around the right side of the building.
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Recent Examples on the Web The Trump administration said Monday that far more have been vaccinated in the United States than estimates suggest, meaning that the rollout is faster than the numbers indicate. Cassidy Morrison, Washington Examiner, "Trump administration says vaccinations much higher than reported 2M," 28 Dec. 2020 The Huskies have been more disruptive than those numbers indicate, especially against Creighton, which scored 66 points, 17 below its average coming in, in regulation. Dom Amore,, "Dan Hurley, UConn men will bond over Christmas, start working on corrections for the rest of the season," 24 Dec. 2020 Some experts argue that these correlating numbers indicate that the border strategy is not successful. Emily Pickrell,, "Travel restrictions cut deeply into business on U.S.-Mexico border," 24 Dec. 2020 The surging infection numbers across the state, experts and officials say, indicate that many are already weary of restrictions and, in the midst of the holiday season, less inclined to stay home. Los Angeles Times, "California pioneered the COVID-19 stay-at-home lockdown. Now, it faces a backlash," 3 Dec. 2020 However, if the numbers indicate there might be grounds to support a full recount, Grogan can request a judge authorize one. Rafael Guerrero,, "Recount in DuPage County auditor race separated by 75 votes to start Monday," 2 Dec. 2020 Preliminary numbers indicate at least 568 people have died as a result of wrecks on Arkansas roads so far this year. Josh Snyder, Arkansas Online, "Troopers: 2 die in Jackson County after vehicle strikes tractor-trailer," 27 Nov. 2020 The numbers indicate the possible approach of another pandemic wave. Mario Ariza,, "Florida tops 900,000 COVID-19 cases," 18 Nov. 2020 Early numbers from 2020 indicate that number was down to about 40,000 in this election. Kevin Crowe, USA TODAY, "No blue wave, no red tide: Historic election turnout boosts Biden in Michigan, Trump in Ohio," 12 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'indicate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of indicate

1541, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for indicate

Latin indicatus, past participle of indicare, from in- + dicare to proclaim, dedicate — more at diction

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Time Traveler for indicate

Time Traveler

The first known use of indicate was in 1541

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Statistics for indicate

Last Updated

15 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Indicate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for indicate


How to pronounce indicate (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of indicate

: to show (something) : to show that (something) exists or is true
: to direct attention to (someone or something) usually by pointing
: to show or suggest that (something) is needed


in·​di·​cate | \ ˈin-də-ˌkāt How to pronounce indicate (audio) \
indicated; indicating

Kids Definition of indicate

1 : to point out or point to Indicate your neighborhood on the map.
2 : to state or express briefly He stepped back … and by so doing indicated that he had finished.— Louise Fitzhugh, Harriet The Spy
in·​di·​cate | \ ˈin-də-ˌkāt How to pronounce indicate (audio) \
indicated; indicating

Medical Definition of indicate

1 : to be a fairly certain symptom of : show the presence or existence of the high fever indicates a serious condition
2 : to call for especially as treatment for a particular condition radical surgery is often indicated in advanced cancer

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