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

Most like bright, indirect light but others prefer lower light conditions. Jodi Torpey, The Denver Post, "Houseplants bring the outdoors inside, add to a room’s decor," 27 June 2019 While most barbecue involves smoking off the flame, this style is always cooked over an unclosed grill with a mix of direct and indirect cooking. Julia Thompson, USA TODAY, "Cooking over open flame: These are some of our favorite restaurants that use fire," 27 June 2019 This glamorous take on a traditional source of indirect light can accommodate LED or incandescent bulbs. Kathryn O’shea-evans, WSJ, "Goodbye, Showy Chandeliers. Hello, Low-Key Lighting That Transforms Rooms," 25 Jan. 2019 The direct and indirect impact of recycling in Alabama was estimated at 84,412 and $19.4 billion, with room to grow. Dennis Pillion | Dpillion@al.com, al.com, "Alabama is great at recycling other people’s trash - just not its own," 19 June 2019 Set up grill for direct and indirect cooking and heat to medium. Cybelle Tondu, Country Living, "Skillet Spinach-Artichoke Dip With Fire-Roasted Bread," 17 June 2019 That means that the blackout could have an indirect impact on how judges think about the case. Elizabeth Winkler, WSJ, "How HBO’s Blackout on Dish Could Affect AT&T," 26 Nov. 2018 Hurricane Hector is moving south of Hawaii, but the Islands will see indirect impacts. Janice Dean, Fox News, "Summertime Heat for much of the Country. No relief for firefighters across the West," 9 Aug. 2018 These changes in climate are creating higher temperatures, which have both direct and indirect effects on creating drought conditions. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Don’t let your landscaping become a fire risk," 7 June 2019

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

10 Jul 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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