hint

noun
\ ˈhint \

Definition of hint

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 archaic : opportunity, turn
2a : a statement that expresses indirectly what one prefers not to say explicitly had been dropping hints that he would like to be invited
b : an indirect or general suggestion for how to do or solve something helpful hints for inexperienced cooks can't tell you the answer but can give you a hint
3 : a slight indication of the existence, approach, or nature of something : clue gave only a hint of what was to come
4 : a very small amount : suggestion with just a hint of spice

hint

verb
hinted; hinting; hints

Definition of hint (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to convey indirectly and by allusion rather than explicitly a suspicion that she scarcely dared to hint

intransitive verb

: to give an indirect suggestion or piece of evidence that leads one toward the solution of a problem : to give a hint usually used with at hint at the answer

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Other Words from hint

Verb

hinter noun

Choose the Right Synonym for hint

Verb

suggest, imply, hint, intimate, insinuate mean to convey an idea indirectly. suggest may stress putting into the mind by association of ideas, awakening of a desire, or initiating a train of thought. a film title that suggests its subject matter imply is close to suggest but may indicate a more definite or logical relation of the unexpressed idea to the expressed. measures implying that bankruptcy was imminent hint implies the use of slight or remote suggestion with a minimum of overt statement. hinted that she might get the job intimate stresses delicacy of suggestion without connoting any lack of candor. intimates that there is more to the situation than meets the eye insinuate applies to the conveying of a usually unpleasant idea in a sly underhanded manner. insinuated that there were shady dealings

Examples of hint in a Sentence

Noun

Her face gave me a hint of what she was thinking. “I have a lot of work to do.” “OK, I'll leave. I can take a hint.” The sauce has a subtle hint of garlic. He had a hint of a German accent. They'll betray you at the first hint of trouble.

Verb

I keep hinting, but she's not catching on. I think I need to be more direct. The boss hinted about possible layoffs.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Crown Prince Mohammed has been dropping hints that a formal rapprochement may be in the offing. Karen Elliott House, WSJ, "Will Netanyahu Go to Riyadh?," 6 Jan. 2019 The app didn't offer any hints about ideal internal temperature for the food. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Review: The June oven made me want a camera in every cooking device," 22 Dec. 2018 The Reuters report gives us a few hints about why that is. Russell Brandom, The Verge, "Smart speakers have no idea how to give us news," 18 Nov. 2018 After being in the public arena of 36 years without a hint, a whiff of an allegation like this. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Read the Full Transcript of Brett Kavanaugh's Opening Statement at Today's Hearing," 27 Sep. 2018 Though largely kept under wraps, the designer has dropped a few hints of what to expect: he’s designed a custom tour look for Beyoncé, unveiled a graphic logo T-shirt, and announced that the brand will go fur-free. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "Chance the Rapper Hypes Up Burberry, Before Riccardo Tisci’s Big Debut," 16 Sep. 2018 Malik has been dropping hints that the follow-up to his 2016 solo debut, Mind of Mine, will be hitting the earbuds of eager fans sooner vs. later. Hilary Hughes, Billboard, "Zayn Malik Covers Elvis Presley's 'Can't Help Falling in Love': Listen," 8 July 2018 Other officials have given not-so-subtle hints about what couples should do with a bit more time on their hands. Brian Murphy, Washington Post, "South Korea’s president wants people to work less — and have more children," 28 June 2018 Despite the dark wood paneling and stately portrait of G.W. himself, there is no hint of stiffness—but plenty of stiff drinks. Stan Parish, WSJ, "A Splendid, (Mostly) Stationary Sunday at the Freehand New York," 10 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

But as Obama hinted, some people still don’t feel comfortable discussing their infertility. Julia Belluz, Vox, "Why Michelle Obama’s revelation that she had a miscarriage and did IVF matters," 9 Nov. 2018 The news comes as insiders hint that CBS is negotiating Moonves’ exit that could include a package worth more than $100 million. Tyler Mccarthy, Fox News, "CBS CEO Les Moonves accused by six more women of sexual misconduct amid reports he'll get big money to leave network," 9 Sep. 2018 But in the two months since that statement was made, deputy commissioner Bill Daly in multiple interviews has strongly hinted the NHL favors a later start date. Geoff Baker, The Seattle Times, "NHL could announce October 2021 start date for new Seattle team as early as Tuesday," 3 Dec. 2018 And the designer has hinted at plans for new battle modes, allowing for solo play and dungeon-crawling adventure scenarios. Owen Duffy, Ars Technica, "Wildlands may be the slickest, simplest fantasy skirmish game ever made," 1 Dec. 2018 Don’t look for Reddit to IPO any time soon, says Sarah Frier: Huffman has hinted previously that an IPO could be in Reddit’s future. Casey Newton, The Verge, "A new kind of dark money on Facebook is influencing elections," 18 Oct. 2018 Well the writers have hinted that moment will be important in season 2. Darren Orf, Popular Mechanics, "Everything We Know So Far About 'Star Trek: Discovery' Season 2," 5 Sep. 2018 Meghan has also previously hinted that a family could be in their future. Andrea Park, Glamour, "Prince Harry Just Gave a Cheeky Response When Asked About Having Kids With Meghan Markle," 11 July 2018 Trump also has hinted at tariffs on auto imports and threatened not to renew the NAFTA trade pact with Canada and Mexico. Paul Davidson, USA TODAY, "The economy is humming. So why do experts foresee a recession in 2020?," 11 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hint.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hint

Noun

1604, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1648, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for hint

Noun and Verb

probably alteration of obsolete hent act of seizing, from hent, verb

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Statistics for hint

Last Updated

15 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hint

The first known use of hint was in 1604

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More Definitions for hint

hint

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hint

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a small piece of information that helps you guess an answer or do something more easily

: information about something given in an indirect way; especially : a statement that suggests something that you do not want to say in a direct way

: a very small amount of something

hint

verb

English Language Learners Definition of hint (Entry 2 of 2)

: to say (something) or give information about (something) in an indirect way

hint

noun
\ ˈhint \

Kids Definition of hint

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : information that helps a person guess an answer or do something more easily
2 : a small amount : trace There's a hint of spring in the air.

hint

verb
hinted; hinting

Kids Definition of hint (Entry 2 of 2)

: to suggest something without plainly asking or saying it I hinted that I need help.

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More from Merriam-Webster on hint

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hint

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hint

Spanish Central: Translation of hint

Nglish: Translation of hint for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hint for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hint

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