How does the verb inquire contrast with its synonyms?
Some common synonyms of inquire are ask, interrogate, query, and question. While all these words mean "to address a person in order to gain information," 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
In what contexts can ask take the place of inquire?
The words ask and inquire can be used in similar contexts, but ask implies no more than the putting of a question.
ask for directions
When might interrogate be a better fit than inquire?
Although the words interrogate and inquire have much in common, interrogate suggests formal or official systematic questioning.
the prosecutor interrogated the witness all day
When can query be used instead of inquire?
The meanings of query and inquire largely overlap; however, query implies a desire for authoritative information or confirmation.
queried a librarian about the book
Where would question be a reasonable alternative to inquire?
The synonyms question and inquire are sometimes interchangeable, but question usually suggests the asking of series of questions.