indirect

adjective
in·​di·​rect | \ ˌin-də-ˈrekt How to pronounce indirect (audio) , -(ˌ)dī-\

Definition of indirect

: not direct: such as
a(1) : deviating from a direct line or course : roundabout
(2) : not going straight to the point an indirect accusation
(3) : being or involving proof of a proposition or theorem by demonstration that its negation leads to an absurdity or contradiction
b : not straightforward and open : deceitful
c : not directly aimed at or achieved indirect consequences
d : stating what a real or supposed original speaker said with changes in wording that conform the statement grammatically to the sentence in which it is included indirect discourse an indirect question
e : not effected by the action of the people or the electorate indirect government representation

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Other Words from indirect

indirectly \ ˌin-​də-​ˈrekt-​lē How to pronounce indirectly (audio) , -​(ˌ)dī-​ \ adverb
indirectness \ ˌin-​də-​ˈrekt-​nəs How to pronounce indirectness (audio) , -​(ˌ)dī-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for indirect

Synonyms

circuitous, circular, roundabout

Antonyms

direct, straight, straightforward

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Examples of indirect in a Sentence

We took an indirect route. These plants grow best in bright indirect light. He gave only vague, indirect answers to our questions. They used indirect methods of investigation. There were many indirect references to his earlier books. Looking at her watch was her indirect way of telling him it was time to leave. Poor nutrition may have been an indirect cause of the disease. The cigarette stubs were indirect evidence that someone had been smoking in the room. “He said that he would call later,” is an example of indirect speech since his actual words were “I'll call later.” an indirect question such as “She asked whether the doctor had arrived”
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Recent Examples on the Web

Deaths associated with a particular natural disaster can be classified as direct or indirect deaths. Alexis R. Santos-lozada, Slate Magazine, "Will Puerto Rico’s Official Death Count From Maria Ever Be Accurate?," 8 Jan. 2018 That being said, the weather could still have an indirect effect. Korin Miller, SELF, "How to Protect Yourself in Extremely Cold Weather," 29 Jan. 2019 Since exoplanets are drowned out by starlight, astronomers have to use clever, indirect ways to tease out the existence of a distant world. Loren Grush, The Verge, "A cold ‘super-Earth’ may live around a nearby star," 14 Nov. 2018 Set up your grill for indirect grilling and set heat to medium-low. Susan Selasky, Detroit Free Press, "Ribs 101: Pitmasters offer advice on cooking ribs," 1 July 2018 More significantly, Tropical Storm Allison, a 2001 storm which hit hardest in southeast Texas and Louisiana, would have also been a RealImpact 5 due to catastrophic flooding and the deaths, both direct and indirect, of around 50 people. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "AccuWeather Unveils Its Own Hurricane Scale," 14 Jan. 2019 In this view, there don't need to be any practical benefits arising from the social practice itself; instead, the benefits are all indirect, and based on group identity. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "People adopt made-up social rules to be part of a group," 28 Dec. 2018 Enrico Moretti, an economics professor at the University of California-Berkeley, has estimated that in addition to new Amazon employees, HQ2 could bring up to 250,000 additional indirect jobs to the winning city. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Amazon HQ2 winner appears to be both New York and Crystal City, Virginia," 6 Nov. 2018 According to a study conducted by Martin Associates in 2016, the most recent, the port contributed to nearly 45,000 direct, induced and indirect jobs and $7.4 billion in economic impact from business service revenue and re-spending and consumption. Chabeli Herrera, miamiherald, "Despite recent dredge, PortMiami still can't fit some large ships. New project in the works," 8 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'indirect.' 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 indirect

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for indirect

Middle English, from Medieval Latin indirectus, from Latin in- + directus direct — more at dress

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Statistics for indirect

Last Updated

1 May 2019

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Time Traveler for indirect

The first known use of indirect was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for indirect

indirect

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of indirect

: not going straight from one point to another
: not said or done in a clear and direct way
: not having a clear and direct connection

indirect

adjective
in·​di·​rect | \ ˌin-də-ˈrekt How to pronounce indirect (audio) , -dī-\

Kids Definition of indirect

1 : not straight or direct an indirect route
2 : not straightforward an indirect answer
3 : not having a plainly seen connection an indirect cause

Other Words from indirect

indirectly adverb
indirectness noun

indirect

adjective
in·​di·​rect | \ ˌin-də-ˈrekt, -dī- How to pronounce indirect (audio) \

Medical Definition of indirect

1 : not direct: as
a : not resulting directly from an action or cause (as a disease) indirect effects of malaria
b : involving intermediate or intervening parts or pathways stimulation of one eye elicits narrowing of the pupil of the other eye by an indirect reaction indirect attachment of a muscle through tendons
2 : involving or being immunofluorescence in which antibodies of two kinds are used of which the first combine with a specific protein and the second contain a fluorescent label and combine with the antibodies of the first type

Other Words from indirect

indirectly adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on indirect

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with indirect

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for indirect

Spanish Central: Translation of indirect

Nglish: Translation of indirect for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of indirect for Arabic Speakers

Comments on indirect

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