WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2017
- to look into or examine the particulars of (something) carefully so as to discover something hidden, unique, or complex: [no object]The police were called in to investigate.[~ + object]The scientists were investigating the behavior of dolphins.
- to examine, study, or inquire into systematically; search or examine into the particulars of;
examine in detail.
- to search out and examine the particulars of in an attempt to learn the facts about something hidden, unique, or complex, esp. in an attempt to find a motive, cause, or culprit:The police are investigating the murder.
- to make inquiry, examination, or investigation.
- Latin investīgātus, past participle of investīgāre to follow a trail, search out. See in-2, vestige, -ate1