Language Refresher 90: Imply or Infer?

The Oxford Dictionaries gave the following rules that will help us learn how to use imply and infer. 


Source: Pixabay


(a).  Imply means ‘indicate the truth or existence of (something) by suggestion rather than explicit reference’.

Ex: The way they all talk about their boss implies that he is not a particularly good leader.

(b). Infer, on the other hand, means to ‘deduce or conclude (something) from evidence and reasoning rather than from explicit statements’.

Ex. From the facts in this report we can infer that crime has been increasing.

When someone implies something, it is not explicitly stated; it is up to the person receiving the information to interpret it. When someone infers something, they reach a conclusion about something based on the information available, even if the fact has not been stated outright. Thus, both ‘imply’ and ‘infer’ can be used to describe the same event, which may be in part what leads to the common confusion between them.




For Duzon teachers and staff, please use the link below:

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To read more about this topic, please click here: Imply or Infer?

To take the quiz, please click here.


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