in·​quire | \ in-ˈkwī(-ə)r How to pronounce inquire (audio) \
inquired; inquiring

Definition of inquire

intransitive verb

1 : to put a question : seek for information by questioning inquired about the horses
2 : to make investigation or inquiry often used with into

transitive verb

1 : to ask about some kindred spirit shall inquire thy fate— Thomas Gray
2 : to search into : investigate
inquire after
: to ask about the health of

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Other Words from inquire

inquirer noun
inquiringly \ in-​ˈkwī-​riŋ-​lē How to pronounce inquiringly (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for inquire

ask, question, interrogate, query, inquire mean to address a person in order to gain information. ask implies no more than the putting of a question. ask for directions question usually suggests the asking of series of questions. questioned them about every detail of the trip interrogate suggests formal or official systematic questioning. the prosecutor interrogated the witness all day query implies a desire for authoritative information or confirmation. queried a librarian about the book inquire implies a searching for facts or for truth often specifically by asking questions. began to inquire of friends and teachers what career she should pursue

Examples of inquire in a Sentence

When I inquired, they told me she was not here. We inquired the way to the station. “So, what do you want?” he inquired.
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Recent Examples on the Web This information allows consumers to contact manufacturers directly to inquire about the source of product ingredients and notify the company of any known or probable reactions to the ingredients. Popular Science, "The ‘inactive' ingredients in your pills could harm you," 15 Sep. 2020 Parents are taking to Facebook to inquire about tuition models, insurance policies, and potential podmates for their children while tutors and teachers offer their services. Sara Miller Llana, The Christian Science Monitor, "Learning pods, low-income students, and the micro-schooling debate," 10 Sep. 2020 The news agency reports that India’s military has now sent a message to their Chinese counterparts to inquire about the alleged kidnappings. Greg Norman, Fox News, "Indian lawmaker accuses Chinese border troops of abducting 5 civilians," 7 Sep. 2020 To inquire about scheduling a private group tour on weekday afternoons, call (985) 845-2100 or (985) 502-3030. Iris Vacante|contributing Writer,, "Sketches prove the Pontalbas spent time in St. Tammany Parish," 30 Aug. 2020 Todd was reportedly there to inquire about the death of Shane Boswell, 23, who was killed during a break-in in south Minneapolis last week. Libor Jany, Star Tribune, "Prosecutors charge 19-year-old with murder in separate Minneapolis, St. Paul homicides," 25 Aug. 2020 So far, Highsmith said about 100 employees have reached out to him to inquire about leaves and modifications generally related to COVID-19. Amanda Blanco,, "Hamden will delay reopening of schools due to staffing shortages, an issue Connecticut teachers unions warn could be widespread this year," 26 Aug. 2020 Contact your local animal shelter or rescue to inquire about their foster programs. Traci Howerton,, "Think about fostering a pet -- it can be a good experience for both of you," 19 Aug. 2020 According to Fox 4, hundreds of people were touched by the child's plea and began calling in from states all across the country to inquire about adopting Jordan, who has been in foster care for six years. Claudia Harmata,, "Oklahoma Boy, 9, in Foster Care Receives Over 5,000 Adoption Submissions After Pleading for a Family," 16 Aug. 2020

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for inquire

Middle English enquiren, from Anglo-French enquerre, from Vulgar Latin *inquaerere, alteration of Latin inquirere, from in- + quaerere to seek

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Time Traveler for inquire

Time Traveler

The first known use of inquire was in the 13th century

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Statistics for inquire

Last Updated

19 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Inquire.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for inquire


How to pronounce inquire (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of inquire

somewhat formal : to ask for information


in·​quire | \ in-ˈkwīr How to pronounce inquire (audio) \
inquired; inquiring

Kids Definition of inquire

1 : to ask or ask about I inquired about the schedule.
2 : to make an investigation The committee inquired into the matter.
3 : to ask a question “Can I help you?” she inquired.

Other Words from inquire

inquirer noun
inquiringly adverb

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Comments on inquire

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