From Latin indicatus, past participle of indicāre (to point out, indicate), from in (in, to) + dicāre (to declare, originally to point); see diction. Compare index.


  • IPA(key): /ˈɪndɪkeɪt/
  • (file)


indicate (third-person singular simple present indicates, present participle indicating, simple past and past participle indicated)

  1. To point out; to discover; to direct to a knowledge of; to show; to make known.
    The guard blew his whistle to indicate imminent departure.
    • 1910, Emerson Hough, “A Lady in Company”, in The Purchase Price: Or The Cause of Compromise, Indianapolis, Ind.: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, →OCLC:
      With just the turn of a shoulder she indicated the water front, where, at the end of the dock on which they stood, lay the good ship, Mount Vernon, river packet, the black smoke already pouring from her stacks.
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, “Eye Witness”, in The China Governess: A Mystery, London: Chatto & Windus, →OCLC, page 249:
      The story struck the depressingly familiar note with which true stories ring in the tried ears of experienced policemen. [] The second note, the high alarum, not so familiar and always important since it indicates the paramount sin in Man's private calendar, took most of them by surprise although they had been well prepared.
    • 2013 May-June, Katrina G. Claw, “Rapid Evolution in Eggs and Sperm”, in American Scientist, volume 101, number 3:
      Many genes with reproductive roles also have antibacterial and immune functions, which indicate that the threat of microbial attack on the sperm or egg may be a major influence on rapid evolution during reproduction.
  2. To show or manifest by symptoms; to point to as the proper remedies.
    Great prostration of strength indicates the use of stimulants.
  3. To signal in a vehicle the desire to turn right or left.
  4. To investigate the condition or power of, as of steam engine, by means of an indicator.
    • 1903, "How to indicate an engine" in The Star Improved Steam Engine Indicator, p.64:
      To a person who is familiar with the use of an indicator, whether it be of one make or another, it is needless to give instructions as to how an engine should be indicated, [].
    • 1905, Power, Vol.25, p.448:
      I found it fully as easy to indicate an engine at a speed of 320 to 340 revolutions as at 80.
    • 1905, Central Station, Vol.5, p.76:
      An indicator will give the working of these valves at all times and soon return its cost in higher engine efficiency. The day has passed when it was only the expert who could indicate an engine or afford to own an indicator.


Related termsEdit


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Further readingEdit




indicate f pl

  1. feminine plural of indicato



  1. inflection of indicare:
    1. second-person plural present indicative
    2. second-person plural imperative
    3. feminine plural past participle





  1. vocative masculine singular of indicātus



  1. second-person plural present active imperative of indicō