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indirect question

a question reported in indirect speech, as in She asked why you came Compare direct question
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
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Examples from the Web for indirect question
Historical Examples
  • Aurora replied neither to the direct nor the indirect question.

    Aurora Floyd, Vol. II (of 3)

    M. E. (Mary Elizabeth) Braddon
  • An indirect question to one of the clerks helped him to an explanation of this.

  • An indirect question expresses the substance of a direct question in the form of a subordinate clause.

  • An indirect question, on the contrary, has an interrogative sense which may be seen by turning the question into the direct form.

  • An indirect question is sometimes expressed by means of an interrogative pronoun or adverb followed by an infinitive.

  • An exclamatory sentence in the form of an indirect question is followed by an exclamation point; as,How absolute the knave is!

  • But whichever tense be used in the summary, a past tense in indirect discourse or in indirect question remains unchanged.

    The Elements of Style William Strunk
  • Durnford was absorbed in the landscape, and made no reply to the indirect question.

    Mohawks, Volume 1 of 3 Mary Elizabeth Braddon
  • Dante by an indirect question, seeks to learn how much experience of Inferno is possessed by his guide.

  • The indirect quotation is usually introduced by that, and the indirect question by whether or if, or regular interrogatives.

    An English Grammar W. M. Baskervill and J. W. Sewell
Contemporary definitions for indirect question

a question embedded in a sentence; an inquiry in reported speech, e.g. He asked who I was.

Usage Note

gram.'s 21st Century Lexicon
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