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Also found in: Thesaurus.
Related to enquirers: reinvigorated, outlined, call on, awaited, makes for, scrutinised, overhyped, took over


v. Chiefly British
Variant of inquire.


a variant of inquire
enˈquirer n



also enquire

v. -quired, -quir•ing. v.i.
1. to seek information by questioning; ask: to inquire about a person.
2. to make investigation (usu. fol. by into): to inquire into the incident.
3. to seek to learn by asking: to inquire a person's name.
4. inquire after, to ask about the well-being of (someone not present).
[1425–75; late Middle English < Latin inquīrere to search out, investigate =in- in-2 + quaerere to seek; replacing Middle English enqueren < Old French enquerre < Medieval Latin *inquarere]
in•quir′a•ble, adj.
in•quir′er, n.
in•quir′ing•ly, adv.


1. 'inquire' and 'enquire'

If you inquire or enquire about something, you ask for information about it. There is no difference in meaning between these words. Inquire is more common, especially in American English.

We inquired about the precise circumstances surrounding the arrest.
I enquired about the scenery and Beaumont told me it was being built in a carpenter's shop in Waterloo.

You can use inquire or enquire with a 'wh'-clause.

She inquired how Ibrahim was getting on.
I enquired what kind of aircraft he had commanded before returning home.

In writing, inquire and enquire are sometimes used in quote structures.

'Anything you need?' inquired the girl.
'Who compiles these reports?' Philip enquired.

Be Careful!
You do not use these verbs with a direct object. You do not say, for example, 'He inquired her if she was well'.

2. 'ask'

Inquire and enquire are fairly formal words. In conversation, people usually use ask. Ask can be used with or without a direct object.

She asked about his work.
I asked him what he wanted.


Past participle: enquired
Gerund: enquiring

I enquire
you enquire
he/she/it enquires
we enquire
you enquire
they enquire
I enquired
you enquired
he/she/it enquired
we enquired
you enquired
they enquired
Present Continuous
I am enquiring
you are enquiring
he/she/it is enquiring
we are enquiring
you are enquiring
they are enquiring
Present Perfect
I have enquired
you have enquired
he/she/it has enquired
we have enquired
you have enquired
they have enquired
Past Continuous
I was enquiring
you were enquiring
he/she/it was enquiring
we were enquiring
you were enquiring
they were enquiring
Past Perfect
I had enquired
you had enquired
he/she/it had enquired
we had enquired
you had enquired
they had enquired
I will enquire
you will enquire
he/she/it will enquire
we will enquire
you will enquire
they will enquire
Future Perfect
I will have enquired
you will have enquired
he/she/it will have enquired
we will have enquired
you will have enquired
they will have enquired
Future Continuous
I will be enquiring
you will be enquiring
he/she/it will be enquiring
we will be enquiring
you will be enquiring
they will be enquiring
Present Perfect Continuous
I have been enquiring
you have been enquiring
he/she/it has been enquiring
we have been enquiring
you have been enquiring
they have been enquiring
Future Perfect Continuous
I will have been enquiring
you will have been enquiring
he/she/it will have been enquiring
we will have been enquiring
you will have been enquiring
they will have been enquiring
Past Perfect Continuous
I had been enquiring
you had been enquiring
he/she/it had been enquiring
we had been enquiring
you had been enquiring
they had been enquiring
I would enquire
you would enquire
he/she/it would enquire
we would enquire
you would enquire
they would enquire
Past Conditional
I would have enquired
you would have enquired
he/she/it would have enquired
we would have enquired
you would have enquired
they would have enquired
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.enquire - inquire aboutenquire - inquire about; "I asked about their special today"; "He had to ask directions several times"
communicate, intercommunicate - transmit thoughts or feelings; "He communicated his anxieties to the psychiatrist"
ask - direct or put; seek an answer to; "ask a question"
pry - be nosey; "Don't pry into my personal matters!"
confer with, consult - get or ask advice from; "Consult your local broker"; "They had to consult before arriving at a decision"
ask - address a question to and expect an answer from; "Ask your teacher about trigonometry"; "The children asked me about their dead grandmother"
2.enquire - conduct an inquiry or investigation of; "The district attorney's office investigated reports of possible irregularities"; "inquire into the disappearance of the rich old lady"
spy - secretly collect sensitive or classified information; engage in espionage; "spy for the Russians"
probe, examine - question or examine thoroughly and closely
3.enquire - have a wish or desire to know something; "He wondered who had built this beautiful church"
query, question - pose a question
request - inquire for (information); "I requested information from the secretary"


see inquire


also enquire
1. To put a question to (someone):
2. To go into or through for the purpose of making discoveries or acquiring information:
يَتَحَرّى عن، يُحَقِّق فييَسْأل عنيَسْأل عن شَخْصيَسْأل عن صِحَّةيَسْتَعْلِمُ عَنْ
dotázat se
grennslast fyrir umgrennslast fyrir um, rannsakaspyrja umspyrjast fyrir um
apjautātiesievākt ziņasjautātpētīt
hỏi thông tin



(inˈkwaiə) verb
1. to ask. He inquired the way to the art gallery; She inquired what time the bus left.
2. (with about) to ask for information about. They inquired about trains to London.
3. (with after) to ask for information about the state of (eg a person's health). He enquired after her mother.
4. (with for) to ask to see or talk to (a person). Someone rang up inquiring for you, but you were out.
5. (with for) to ask for (goods in a shop etc). Several people have been inquiring for the new catalogue.
6. (with into) to try to discover the facts of. The police are inquiring into the matter.
inˈquiry ( American also ˈinkwəri) , enˈquiry (American also ˈenkwəri) plural inquiries, ~enquiries noun
1. (an act of) asking or investigating. His inquiries led him to her hotel; (also adjective) All questions will be dealt with at the inquiry desk.
2. an investigation. An inquiry is being held into her disappearance.
make inquiries
to ask for information.


يَسْتَعْلِمُ عَنْ dotázat se forespørge erkundigen (sich) ερευνώ inquirir tiedustella demander pitati chiedere 問い合わせる 문의하다 navragen spørre zasięgnąć informacji informar-se осведомляться efterfråga ถามคำถาม araştırmak hỏi thông tin 询问
References in classic literature ?
But a kind of continuation of the Tales of my Landlord had been recently attempted by a stranger, and it was supposed this Dedicatory Epistle might pass for some imitation of the same kind, and thus putting enquirers upon a false scent, induce them to believe they had before them the work of some new candidate for their favour.
The disseminators of this tale are the accusers whom I dread; for their hearers are apt to fancy that such enquirers do not believe in the existence of the gods.
Proportions and values were upside-down; the ugly things he had expected, the ugly things of his far-away youth, when he had too promptly waked up to a sense of the ugly - these uncanny phenomena placed him rather, as it happened, under the charm; whereas the "swagger" things, the modern, the monstrous, the famous things, those he had more particularly, like thousands of ingenuous enquirers every year, come over to see, were exactly his sources of dismay.
Of this the enquirers of the seventeenth century, who to themselves appeared to be working out independently the enquiry into all truth, were unconscious.
The TV Amplifier we are now giving enquirers we are now giving enquirers will be given free to keep, with will be given free to keep, with with hearing difficulties with hearing difficulties IIbatteries included.
In one of the few studies on adoption recruitment, Simmonds's (2000) survey of NAW found that 23 per cent of enquirers had gone on to approach an adoption agency and a further 13 per cent had started the adoption process.
Enquirers who decide on adoption have to be accepting of the children and willing to support their needs, yet research has repeatedly shown that most enquirers have an initial preference for healthy infants (Simmonds, 2000; Wallis, 2006).
Simmonds (2000), for example, found that 23 per cent of NAW enquirers who had contacted an agency cited a lack of positive feelings from the agency as their reason for withdrawing.
This random sample of enquirers was designed to explore the links between the characteristics of enquirers, their decision-making about adoption and their experience of making an enquiry.
The findings from these studies have focused on agency practices, such as how the initial contact with enquirers is handled, how information is shared about adoption and how stereotypes that people might hold about adoption are addressed.
Over more than five decades as America's original supermarket tabloid, the National Enquirer has chronicled Elvis Presley sightings, two-headed calves, ghastly car wrecks and the many, many ways in which celebrities behave badly.
The twin blockbusters engendered a wave of admiring media coverage for the Enquirer, an unusual occurrence for a publication that once trumpeted stories like "I Put My Baby in a Waste Basket and Poured Concrete Over Her.