Definition of inform in English:

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Pronunciation: /ɪnˈfɔːm/


1 [reporting verb] Give (someone) facts or information; tell: [with object]: he wrote to her, informing her of the situation [with object and direct speech]: ‘That’s nothing new,’ she informed him [with object and clause]: they were informed that no risk was involved
More example sentences
  • In fact I was informed that the people of the area, not just the parents, had the same claim on the school as the Department.
  • We could book our place on the lake and would have a guaranteed swim for the night; in fact we were informed that only six people were allowed to fish at night at any one time.
  • If someone leaves a comment on one of your posts, you are sent an e-mail informing you of this fact, and containing the comment.
tell, let someone know, notify, apprise, advise, announce to, impart to, communicate to;
brief, prime, enlighten, send word to, keep posted
informal put in the picture, fill in, clue in/up, give the low-down to
1.1 [no object] Give incriminating information about someone to the police or other authority: he had been recruited by the KGB to inform on his fellow students
More example sentences
  • When arrested he referred to him because he believed that that man, who had left his house two minutes before the police arrived, had informed on him.
  • The staff were not expected to inform on clients but should refer matters to their superior.
  • Word has gotten round that they informed to the police, and it seems I, as an associate, have been tarred with the same brush.
denounce, give away, betray, incriminate, inculpate, report, tell the authorities/police about;
double-cross, sell out, stab in the back, be a Judas to, give someone a Judas kiss;
English Law  turn Queen's/King's evidence
informal rat, squeal, squeak, blab, split, tell, tell tales about, blow the whistle, spill the beans, put the finger on, sell down the river, nark, snitch, peach, stitch up, do the dirty on
British informal grass, shop, sneak
Scottish informal clype
North American informal rat out, drop a/the dime on, finger, job
Australian/New Zealand informal dob, pimp, pool, shelf, put someone's pot on, point the bone at
rare delate
2 [with object] Give an essential or formative principle or quality to: religion informs every aspect of their lives
More example sentences
  • New development needs to be informed by the principles of urbanism.
  • Religion can inform every aspect of a person's life, including politics, and this, I think, is not a bad thing.
  • The writing in Mapping is top quality because it is informed by design experience.
suffuse, pervade, permeate, infuse, imbue, saturate;
illuminate, animate;
characterize, typify


Middle English enforme, informe 'give form or shape to', also 'form the mind of, teach', from Old French enfourmer, from Latin informare 'shape, fashion, describe', from in- 'into' + forma 'a form'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: in¦form

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