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 That would indicate a degree of scope, precision, and sophistication beyond the ability of the Houthi rebels alone., "Even as Iranian diplomats denied any role in the attack, others close to Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guard were reveling in the damage at the Saudi oil facilities, which process the vast majority of the country’s crude output.," 16 Sep. 2019 Bolton's departure from the White House may indicate a softening of the Trump administration's position on Iran, which would be bad news for Netanyahu. Oren Liebermann, CNN, "Trump may no longer be the gift that keeps on giving for Netanyahu," 16 Sep. 2019 Still, these recent flips from residential to hotels could indicate an approaching ceiling in new demand for the most high-end downtown apartments and condos. Jc Reindl, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit developers ditching condo plans to build more hotel rooms," 16 Sep. 2019 That would indicate a degree of scope, precision and sophistication beyond the ability of the Houthi rebels alone. Eric Schmitt, New York Times, "Saudi Oil Attack Photos Implicate Iran, U.S. Says; Trump Hints at Military Action," 15 Sep. 2019 At the very least the detergent should indicate it’s intended for synthetic fabrics. Wendy Rose Gould, NBC News, "How to get the smell out of gym clothes," 11 Sep. 2019 These surveys, says Harvey, can indicate how key decision makers plan to spend their money in the future. Polina Marinova, Fortune, "Is the ‘Code Red’ Recession Indicator Simply a False Alarm?: Term Sheet," 10 Sep. 2019 During the experiment, the research team was watching to see if and when the voles froze, a common prey behavior that, in this case, would indicate that the rodents had seen the owl. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Moonlight Helps White Barn Owls Stun Their Prey," 4 Sep. 2019 From a legal perspective, Georgetown’s LaBelle says, the Oklahoma litigation doesn’t necessarily indicate how future cases will play out. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "J&J’s $527 million dollar fine in opioid case doesn’t bode well for Purdue Pharma," 29 Aug. 2019

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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Statistics for indicate

Last Updated

26 Oct 2019

Time Traveler for indicate

The first known use of indicate was in 1541

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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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Comments on indicate

What made you want to look up indicate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


concealed or difficult to comprehend

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