inform

verb
in·​form | \ in-ˈfȯrm How to pronounce inform (audio) \
informed; informing; informs

Definition of inform

transitive verb

1 : to communicate knowledge to inform a prisoner of his rights
2a : to give character or essence to the principles which inform modern teaching
b : to be the characteristic quality of : animate the compassion that informs her work
3 obsolete : to give material form to
4 obsolete : guide, direct
5 obsolete : to make known

intransitive verb

1 : to give information (as of another's wrongdoing) to an authority informed on a member of his own gang
2 : to impart information or knowledge

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Synonyms for inform

Synonyms

fink, grass (on) [British slang], rat (on), sing, snitch, split (on) [British], squeak, squeal, talk, tell (on)

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Choose the Right Synonym for inform

inform, acquaint, apprise, notify mean to make one aware of something. inform implies the imparting of knowledge especially of facts or occurrences. informed us of the crisis acquaint lays stress on introducing to or familiarizing with. acquaint yourself with the keyboard apprise implies communicating something of special interest or importance. keep us apprised of the situation notify implies sending notice of something requiring attention or demanding action. notified the witness when to appear

Examples of inform in a Sentence

The book will entertain and inform you. The arresting officer failed to inform the suspect of his rights. He failed to inform the suspect that he had the right to remain silent. We haven't yet been informed of her decision. Frequent reports from the battlefield kept the general informed about how the attack was progressing. The book will both entertain and inform. His Catholic upbringing informs all his writing.
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Recent Examples on the Web

By informing future excavations, contemporary archaeology can genuinely be — as Mikel suggests — an archaeology of the future. Jonathon Keats, Discover Magazine, "The Vanishing City," 13 Aug. 2018 And across Curbed’s network of city sites, Play Week will seek to inform and delight. Jenny Xie, Curbed, "It’s Play Week on Curbed," 16 July 2018 So my experience is very much informed by being a black, first gen, cisgender woman. Josephine Yurcaba, Teen Vogue, "The Case for Public Sex Classes," 29 Mar. 2019 During their introductions, Kelly informed concert attendees that most video participants lip-sync songs, but not these guys. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "Kelly Clarkson Sang With Police Officers at Her Concert and the Response Was So Powerful," 23 Feb. 2019 According to Us Weekly, Khloé was immediately informed about what went down by friends who saw Tristan and Jordyn together on Sunday night. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "9 Signs Jordyn Woods and Tristan Thompson Did In Fact Hook Up," 22 Feb. 2019 The actual participants were informed that the fictional ones had only been asked to consider a position—rather than choosing that position, it had been assigned to the fictional subjects at random. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "People adopt made-up social rules to be part of a group," 28 Dec. 2018 Remaining employees were informed Friday via text messages seen by The Verge, or by phone. Sean O'kane, The Verge, "Hyperloop startup Arrivo is shutting down as workers are laid off," 15 Dec. 2018 Gregor quickly informed Niels that Anahata was about its users first and foremost, and that its users — and just as important, Anahata’s engineers — did not care about an improved advertising system. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Google’s former PR boss Jessica Powell wrote a satirical novel about tech and published it all on Medium," 2 Oct. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 3

History and Etymology for inform

Middle English, from Anglo-French enformer, from Latin informare, from in- + forma form

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Statistics for inform

Last Updated

10 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for inform

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

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More Definitions for inform

inform

verb

English Language Learners Definition of inform

: to give information to (someone)
formal : to be or provide the essential quality of (something) : to be very noticeable in (something)

inform

verb
in·​form | \ in-ˈfȯrm How to pronounce inform (audio) \
informed; informing

Kids Definition of inform

1 : to let a person know something I informed him of the changes.
2 : to give information so as to accuse or cause suspicion He refused to inform on his friends.

Other Words from inform

informer noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on inform

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with inform

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for inform

Spanish Central: Translation of inform

Nglish: Translation of inform for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of inform for Arabic Speakers

Comments on inform

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