In the context of a computation, I would like to refer to “the sought value”. I think this is the most precise and terse formulation. However, I have noticed that people often use “sought-after” rather than “sought” in some similar situations. I could certainly say “the sought-after value”, but it’s a bit clumsier, especially if it isn’t necessary. Dictionary entries for ‘seek’ don’t seem to indicate that a preposition should be necessary.
Of course, “the value sought” or “the value sought after” (again, which is best?) could do the trick, and perhaps that’s better English in general, but in my mathematical context, I think the precise meaning gets through more clearly when I use ‘sought’ in an adjective-like manner.
So, is my preferred formulation “the sought value” kosher, or should I modify it with a preposition or otherwise?