- enquire (chiefly British)
From Latin inquīrō (“to seek for”), composed of in- (“in, at, on; into”) + quaerō (“I seek, look for”), of uncertain origin, but possibly from Proto-Italic *kʷaizeō, from Proto-Indo-European *kʷeh₂- (“to acquire”). Displaced Middle English enqueren (from Old French enquerre, of the same source) and native Middle English speir (“ask, inquire”).
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ɪnˈkwaɪə/
- (General American) IPA(key): /ɪnˈkwaɪɹ/
Audio (US) (file)
- Hyphenation: in‧quire
- Rhymes: -aɪə(ɹ)
- (intransitive, US, Canada, Australia) To ask (about something).
- 1910, Emerson Hough, chapter I, in The Purchase Price: Or The Cause of Compromise, Indianapolis, Ind.: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, →OCLC:
- "A fine man, that Dunwody, yonder," commented the young captain, as they parted, and as he turned to his prisoner. "We'll see him on in Washington some day. […] A strong man—a strong one; and a heedless." ¶ "Of what party is he?" she inquired, as though casually.
- (intransitive) To make an inquiry or an investigation.
- (transitive, obsolete) To call; to name.
- In British English, the spelling enquire is more common, with inquire often reserved for official inquests. In Canada and the US, both spellings are acceptable, though inquire is favored. In Australian English, inquire is preferred in all contexts.
- frain (dialect or obsolete)
- (Classical) IPA(key): /inˈkʷiː.re/, [ɪŋˈkʷiːrɛ]
- (modern Italianate Ecclesiastical) IPA(key): /inˈkwi.re/, [iŋˈkwiːre]
- Hyphenation: in‧qui‧re