I have been wondering about if there is a synonym for a person who gives clues but does not give away the real answer. These keywords are too extensive for any thesaurus. Can anyone find a synonym for this definition?

  • 'Heuristic' is defined in one adjectival sense as meaning 'Enabling [prompting] a person to discover or learn something for themselves' [ ODO ]. Perhaps the corresponding sense of 'heurist' as the agent(-ish) noun is given in OED. Commented Jun 5, 2015 at 22:12

4 Answers 4


If you want the verb, I would use hinting/suggesting/insinuating/alluding. I'm not sure if there is a noun for a person who does those things.


The term for such a person is "tease", one who teases, while the verb means

to tantalize especially by arousing desire or curiosity often without intending to satisfy it


"hint" is the first thing that strikes mind

  • A "hint" is not a person, though.
    – Margana
    Commented Jun 5, 2015 at 19:43
  • Hi, and thanks for taking the time to post under this question. It's great that you want to help. However, this answer doesn't really seem to be a full answer. When answering it's best, in the case of single-word-requests, to give a good explanation why the word you're suggesting is a good one. If necessary quote and reference a dictionary. Commented Jun 6, 2015 at 21:27

Sometimes that activity is called spoonfeeding. In that context, you might use the term "spoonfeeder".

To be more specific, I'm referring to game developers who operate ARG's, which are heavily based on spoonfeeding clues to game players. In some circumstances, they hide these clues, but I refer to that as hiding the spoon, instead of coming up with a new term for it. While it might not be in wide use, it certainly conveys the meaning and does so concisely.

Here's a helpful reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alternate_reality_game

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