The Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English has the following sentence:

It has been suggested that the manager will resign if any more players are sold.

I'd like to know which of the following definitions of "suggest" applies here:

a. to tell someone your ideas about what they should do, where they should go etc

b. to state something in an indirect way

I'd appreciate your help.

1 Answer 1


I don't think that either of those definitions, or for that matter any of the definitions given by Longman, are a great fit for this usage. Here's the definition from Merriam-Webster that I think captures it best:

1 transitive verb: a. to mention or imply as a possibility. suggested that he might bring his family

One clue that the sentence deals with a possibility rather than a recommendation in is the word "will". If "suggested" were synonymous with "recommended" we would expect to see something like "should resign" instead.

In the sentence in the question we could replace "suggested" with supposed or speculated without greatly changing the meaning.

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