Definition of question in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkwɛstʃ(ə)n/


1A sentence worded or expressed so as to elicit information: we hope this leaflet has been helpful in answering your questions
More example sentences
  • Curiously, you might not actually perceive this as a question designed to elicit information.
  • She lets Chomsky answer these tough questions in his own words.
  • Organisers of both courses will be there on the evening to provide information and answer questions.
enquiry, query;
interrogation, examination
British informal quiz, quizzing
1.1A doubt about the truth or validity of something: there’s no question that the company’s true financial situation is different
More example sentences
  • It was the seventh time Harrington had finished second that season and naturally his mind screamed with questions and doubts.
  • For some the confidence of adolescence is replaced with questions and doubt, marking the transition to adulthood.
  • There are also some questions over the validity of the Lancet study in the case of measuring casualties in Iraq.
doubt, dispute, argument, debate, uncertainty, dubiousness, controversy, reservation
rare dubiety
1.2 [mass noun] The raising of a doubt about or objection to something: Edward was the only one she obeyed without question her loyalty is really beyond question
More example sentences
  • Throughout her career, her commitment was never in doubt and her courage beyond question.
  • The compilations always, without question, included his preamble to the track and his following comments.
  • The medical benefits of research on primates are beyond question.
undoubted, beyond doubt, without doubt, certain, indubitable, indisputable, irrefutable, incontestable, incontrovertible, unquestionable, undeniable, unmistakable, clear, patent, manifest, obvious, palpable
indisputably, irrefutably, incontestably, incontrovertibly, unquestionably, undeniably, undoubtedly, beyond doubt, without doubt, certainly, indubitably, unmistakably, clearly, patently, manifestly, obviously, palpably
2A matter requiring resolution or discussion: the question of local government funding worried ministers
More example sentences
  • That is why the political questions we are discussing today are so significant.
  • He asked for subsequent parish council meetings to discuss the question of lack of support from Bradford Council.
  • One of them was an article authored by Mahatma Gandhi, discussing the minority question.
2.1A matter or concern depending on or involving a specified condition or thing: it was not simply a question of age and hierarchy
More example sentences
  • All songs have meaning to someone, it's more a question of subject matter.
  • Colin Davey, a member of the Bradford team, said it was a question of educating businesses about the tax system.
  • That has to be a question of opinion rather than fact, so it depends on what you make of the evidence.
issue, matter, business, problem, point at issue, point, concern, subject, topic, theme, item, case, proposal, proposition, debate, argument, dispute, bone of contention, controversy


[with object]
1Ask (someone) questions, especially in an official context: four men were being questioned about the killings (as noun questioning) the young lieutenant escorted us to the barracks for questioning
More example sentences
  • Then they were stopping, searching and questioning people as they came through.
  • Although a number of people were questioned under caution, no-one was ever charged.
  • Hammer was arrested on Sunday night after six people were questioned at a house near the crime scene.
interrogate, ask questions of, put questions to, cross-examine, cross-question, quiz, probe, canvass, catechize, interview, debrief, sound out, examine, give the third degree to
informal grill, pump
1.1Feel or express doubt about; raise objections to: members had questioned the cost of the scheme
More example sentences
  • No matter what our build we always have doubts; we always question our desirability and self-worth.
  • If a battle did not succeed, its execution, not its objectives, were questioned.
  • If you question the cost; a local agency told us we should focus on the child and somehow raise the money.
query, call in/into question, doubt, raise/entertain doubts about, throw doubt on, have/harbour/express suspicions about, suspect, feel uneasy about, have/harbour/express reservations about, challenge, dispute, cast aspersions on, object to, raise objections to



be a question of time

Be certain to happen sooner or later: it is only a question of time before somebody is killed
More example sentences
  • For years now the Government has announced the national strategy is working and that it is just a question of time before we all see the results.
  • It is only a question of time and trying to get the adequate funding to make it happen, ‘she told The Montserrat Reporter.’
  • Next to a grainy black-and-white photo of a youthful man in a beard, a large inscription reads, ‘Our victory is merely a question of time.’

bring something into question

Raise an issue for further consideration or discussion: technology had brought into question the whole future of work
More example sentences
  • Stunned silence for a few moments and then all hell let loose as my lineage was brought into question by a few ‘concerned’ supporters.
  • While that move was brought into question by several people, what has finally emerged is worse!
  • It's not that a community can't exist without a good mix of the rich and poor, but rather what is actually meant by the word community is brought into question.

come into question

Become an issue for further consideration or discussion: our Sunday Trading laws have come into question
More example sentences
  • If the Government is able to transfer questions of this sort of importance to any old Minister, who can use those responses as answers, then the point of question time does seriously come into question.
  • Well then, you might not be the right person for the job, and that job may not be the right one for you, but better to find out now, than in two months when the Microsoft Word expertise you claimed you had is coming into question.
  • Their sons and daughters serve in large numbers in a war whose validity is increasingly coming into question.

good question

Said to indicate that one has been asked a particularly tricky question to which one does not know the answer: What’s it all about, then? Good question!
More example sentences
  • We are a world game, and we're also the largest participation sport, so why aren't we successful? Well, good question.
  • How did we go from a $20 million budget being a lot to a $120 million budget being a lot? Good question.
  • What will be the impact on those now nearing retirement age? Good question.

in question

1Being considered or discussed: on the day in question, there were several serious emergencies
More example sentences
  • It seems to me that part of the dilemma you are discussing herein is not a function of the art in question per se.
  • Furthermore it's equally hard to believe that the song in question is that old.
  • I would think that the woman in question has severe emotional issues that should be dealt with.
at issue, being discussed, under discussion, under consideration, on the agenda, for debate, to be discussed, to be decided
2In doubt: all of the old certainties are in question
More example sentences
  • That was no doubt the case of the minister whose expenses were in question in the case of Jardine v Gillespie.
  • His good faith may not be in question, but his credibility most certainly is.
  • Their patriotism, more in evidence then than it is today, was not in question.

no question of

No possibility of: there is no question of the fight not going ahead
More example sentences
  • They need, too, to be protected from exploitation, but there was no question of that in this case.
  • It is evident that there is no question of whether he will do this, only about how long it will take.
  • We were all taken back by the ease of it all, the fact that there was no question of not paying the tax.

out of the question

Too impracticable or unlikely to merit discussion.
Example sentences
  • Games that involved any running were completely out of the question.
  • Wearing them in public was completely out of the question, of course.
  • The idea that we somehow want to limit our trade with Mexico is out of the question.
impossible, beyond the bounds of possibility, impracticable, unattainable, unachievable, not feasible, not worth considering, unworkable, unobtainable, inconceivable, unthinkable, unimaginable, unrealizable, unsuitable;
beyond one, hopeless, absurd, ridiculous, preposterous, outrageous, ludicrous, beyond the realm of reason
informal not on

put the question

(In a formal debate or meeting) require supporters and opponents of a proposal to record their votes.
Example sentences
  • I just say that I am required to put the question.
  • I have already put the question and the vote has been taken.
  • Steinbach city council could well come in for some sound criticism in the coming days and weeks after narrowly deciding on Tuesday to put the question of licensed dining rooms to a vote.



Pronunciation: /ˈkwɛstʃ(ə)nɪŋli/
Example sentences
  • After a few more uptempo hits Joe turned questioningly to one of his musicians, shrugging slightly.
  • At the door I look back at him and he responds by raising his eyebrows questioningly at me.
  • He moved over and stood next to the bench, looking at me questioningly, as if to ask my permission to sit down.




Late Middle English: from Old French question (noun), questionner (verb), from Latin quaestio(n-), from quaerere 'ask, seek'.

  • This comes via Old French from Latin quaerere ‘ask, seek’. Also from quaerere are query (mid 17th century) an anglicized form of the Latin quaere, ‘Ask!’ used in the 16th century in English as a verb in the sense ‘enquire’; quest (Late Middle English); and inquest.

Words that rhyme with question

congestion, digestion, ingestion, suggestion

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: ques|tion

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