hint

noun
\ ˈhint How to pronounce hint (audio) \

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

But its windows, pockmarked by bulletholes, hint at a dark history: in 1990 government soldiers massacred 600 people here. The Economist, "Liberia’s economic crisis and corruption could lead to violence," 8 Aug. 2019 Other experiments have found different, complementary hints. Adrian Cho, Science | AAAS, "Resurrected detector will hunt for some of the strangest particles in the universe," 8 Aug. 2019 One of the first industrial hemp fields planted in Alabama in mid-May, just below Chandler Mountain in St. Clair County, has an herbal scent, almost like a hint of basil. al, "First legal hemp crop growing well, near harvest, farmers report," 7 Aug. 2019 Wright family gatherings happen on the deck or on the sectional, always with a hint of (play) violence. Alexandra Lange, Curbed, "The Big Little Lie of the TV kitchen island," 1 Aug. 2019 Those names, and the dozens more booked through the end of the year (Phantogram, Ween, Ludacris, Wilco, etc.) hint at both the diversity and import of the bands that AEG has been able to lure to the venue. John Wenzel, The Know, "Take a look inside Mission Ballroom, Denver’s newest venue built just for live music," 28 July 2019 The answer, which came without a hint of self-consciousness, was: construction. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, "Worker Skills to Pay the Bills," 25 July 2019 German-born, America-defined The Beetle was born in Germany in 1938 to humble circumstances, a modest two-door economy car with no hint of future fame. Michael J. Coren, Quartz, "The Beetle, 81, is no more," 11 July 2019 To Joseph Bump, a University of Minnesota ecologist and Gable’s co-advisor, that hints at the potency of wolf cognition—and even, perhaps, something resembling culture, behavior shared by a group and transmitted through social learning. Ben Goldfarb, National Geographic, "The secret lives of fish-eating, beaver-ambushing wolves of Minnesota," 21 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Since the late 1990s, experiments have hinted at their existence. Adrian Cho, Science | AAAS, "Resurrected detector will hunt for some of the strangest particles in the universe," 8 Aug. 2019 The assault Pambakian describes has been hinted at before in the suit filed last August. Chris Morris, Fortune, "Former Tinder Exec Sues Former CEO For Sexual Assault," 6 Aug. 2019 Khalilzad has hinted that a peace agreement could be reached in the next round of talks, scheduled to be held in Qatar. Fox News, "US to withdraw from historic arms control treaty with Russia; Michelle Obama addresses calls to join 2020 race," 2 Aug. 2019 Other times, people would hint at possible trafficking but could provide no proof. Saja Hindi, The Denver Post, "A fate “worse than death”: Aurora teen Lashaya Stine still missing after 3 years, family suspects human trafficking," 23 July 2019 General manager Eric DeCosta hinted at a wide range of possibilities after drafting him, from screen passes to reverses to long balls. Jonas Shaffer, baltimoresun.com, "Ravens 2019 training camp preview: Wide receiver," 17 July 2019 The co-creators of the show, Matt and Ross Duffer, have hinted about what might happen in Stranger Things 4. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "'Stranger Things' Season 4 Will Tie up Loose Ends, but Feel Very Different," 10 July 2019 More recent discoveries hint at a different migratory mode: through time. Daniel Ackerman, Anchorage Daily News, "Ancient life awakens amid thawing ice caps and permafrost," 8 July 2019 The Game of Thrones star had previously hinted at the possibility of wearing Vuitton at her second wedding. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Sophie Turner's Full Wedding Dress Was Just Revealed on Instagram," 4 July 2019

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

13 Aug 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 How to pronounce hint (audio) \

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

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