investigate

verb
in·ves·ti·gate | \ in-ˈve-stə-ˌgāt \
investigated; investigating

Definition of investigate 

transitive verb

: to observe or study by close examination and systematic inquiry

intransitive verb

: to make a systematic examination especially : to conduct an official inquiry

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Other words from investigate

investigation \in-ˌve-stə-ˈgā-shən \ noun
investigative \in-ˈve-stə-ˌgā-tiv \ adjective
investigator \in-ˈve-stə-ˌgā-tər \ noun
investigatory \in-ˈve-sti-gə-ˌtȯr-ē \ adjective

Examples of investigate in a Sentence

The police are still investigating the murder. The accident was thoroughly investigated. The manager promised to investigate when we pointed out an error on our bill. He was investigated for his involvement in the incident.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The body of a missing Massachusetts man was found in Rindge, N.H. this week, and his death is being investigated as a homicide, officials said Friday. Alejandro Serrano, BostonGlobe.com, "Missing Westminster man found dead in NH," 14 July 2018 The name of the victim has not yet been released and the cause of the accident is still being investigated, the CHP said. Julia Sclafani, sacbee, "Motorcyclist found dead after overnight crash on Highway 65 offramp," 13 July 2018 This crash is also being investigated by the sheriff’s crash investigations unit. Jim Newton, Lake County News-Sun, "Man dies in Antioch Township crash Friday; second motorcycle death in Lake County this week," 13 July 2018 This isn't the first time the England set up has been investigated by FIFA this World Cup either. SI.com, "FIFA Investigation Underway as England Fans Accused of 'Potentially Discriminatory' Chants," 12 July 2018 An El Paso police officer is being investigated after video showing him threatening a group of children with a gun went viral. Fernando Ramirez, Houston Chronicle, "El Paso cop pulls gun on group of children, arrests cameraman," 10 July 2018 The Met does not identify people who are subject to investigations until charges have been filed and would not confirm Spacey is being investigated. Lindsay Kimble, PEOPLE.com, "Robin Wright on Kevin Spacey's Sexual Assault Allegations: 'We Never Socialized Outside of Work'," 9 July 2018 And, the girls are being investigated regarding last season's events. refinery29.com, "Orange Is The New Black," 9 July 2018 The July 5 incident is being investigated by the Public Integrity Unit, police said. Darcy Costello, The Courier-Journal, "'Don't touch her': 911 call details lead up to fatal shooting by LMPD," 6 July 2018

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

circa 1510, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for investigate

Latin investigatus, past participle of investigare to track, investigate, from in- + vestigium footprint, track

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Phrases Related to investigate

open investigation

under investigation

Statistics for investigate

Last Updated

6 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for investigate

The first known use of investigate was circa 1510

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More Definitions for investigate

investigate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of investigate

: to try to find out the facts about (something, such as a crime or an accident) in order to learn how it happened, who did it, etc.

: to try to get information about (someone who may have done something illegal)

investigate

verb
in·ves·ti·gate | \ in-ˈve-stə-ˌgāt \
investigated; investigating

Kids Definition of investigate

: to study by close examination and questioning Police are investigating the crime.

Other words from investigate

investigator \-ˌgā-tər \ noun

investigate

verb
in·ves·ti·gate | \ in-ˈves-tə-ˌgāt \
investigated; investigating

Legal Definition of investigate 

transitive verb

: to observe or study by close examination and systematic inquiry specifically : to make (a criminal suspect) the subject of inquiry and study for the purpose of establishing probable cause

intransitive verb

: to make a systematic examination especially : to conduct an official inquiry

Other words from investigate

investigation \in-ˌves-tə-ˈgā-shən \ noun
investigative \in-ˈves-tə-ˌgā-tiv \ adjective
investigator \-ˌgā-tər \ noun
investigatory \in-ˈves-tə-gə-ˌtōr-ē \ adjective

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