Definition of "indirect" []

  • Diverging from a direct course; roundabout. (adjective)
  • Not proceeding straight to the point or object. (adjective)
  • Not forthright and candid; devious. (adjective)
  • Not directly planned for; secondary: indirect benefits. (adjective)
  • Reporting the exact or approximate words of another with such changes as are necessary to bring the original statement into grammatical conformity with the sentence in which it is included: indirect discourse. (adjective)
  • Deviating from a direct course or line; roundabout; circuitous (adjective)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • Not coming as a direct effect or consequence; secondary (adjective)
  • Not straightforward, open, or fair; devious or evasive (adjective)
  • (of a title or an inheritance) not inherited in an unbroken line of succession from father to son (adjective) (c) HarperCollins Publishers Ltd 2016

Use "indirect" in a sentence
  • "They were crammed with what we term indirect workers—workers on their way to relieve a fellow employee, machine repairers en route to troubleshoot a problem, housekeepers, inventory runners."
  • "In a small group, say a village, what we call indirect reciprocity bestows tremendous advantages, by allowing me to benefit from the experience that others in our clan had when dealing with you."
  • "What they've been doing is what we call indirect attack."