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inkling

[ingk-ling] /ˈɪŋk lɪŋ/
noun
1.
a slight suggestion or indication; hint; intimation:
They hadn't given us an inkling of what was going to happen.
2.
a vague idea or notion; slight understanding:
They didn't have an inkling of how the new invention worked.
Origin
1505-1515
1505-15; obsolete inkle to hint (Middle English inklen) + -ing1; akin to Old English inca suspicion
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for inkling
  • So, from the first inkling of an idea until submission can be a year or two for me.
  • The first inkling of financial difficulties in here surfaced in the chow hall.
  • Punters typically have no inkling of where their meal was caught.
  • But otherwise you have no inkling that the face is there, even though your left eye has been staring at it for many minutes.
  • Yet it stretches credulity for the party to say that it had no inkling.
  • But other investors have an inkling that many big programs will eventually be written the open-source way.
  • The lyrics are full of noble sentiment, if occasionally touched by an inkling of longing or romantic disappointment.
  • Schumpeter had an inkling of this process but did not go far enough.
  • But the first and the last can give an inkling of what's in between.
  • Nor is it necessarily obvious to people who grew up in cities, and who have only an inkling of what happens on a modern farm.
British Dictionary definitions for inkling

inkling

/ˈɪŋklɪŋ/
noun
1.
a slight intimation or suggestion; suspicion
Word Origin
C14: probably from inclen to hint at; related to Old English inca
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for inkling
n.

c.1400, apparently from the gerund of Middle English verb inclen "utter in an undertone, hint at, hint" (mid-14c.), which is of unknown origin; perhaps related to Old English inca "doubt, suspicion."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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