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speculate

[spek-yuh-leyt] /ˈspɛk yəˌleɪt/
verb (used without object), speculated, speculating.
1.
to engage in thought or reflection; meditate (often followed by on, upon, or a clause).
2.
to indulge in conjectural thought.
3.
to engage in any business transaction involving considerable risk or the chance of large gains, especially to buy and sell commodities, stocks, etc., in the expectation of a quick or very large profit.
Origin of speculate
1590-1600
1590-1600; < Latin speculātus, past participle of speculārī to watch over, explore, reconnoiter, derivative of specula watch tower, noun derivative of specere to look, regard; see -ate1
Related forms
overspeculate, verb (used without object), overspeculated, overspeculating.
prespeculate, verb (used without object), prespeculated, prespeculating.
unspeculating, adjective
Synonyms
1. think, reflect, cogitate. 2. conjecture, guess, surmise, suppose, theorize.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for speculating
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In its palmy days people were only speculating upon the borders of an abyss which had not yet opened visibly before them.

    The Women of the French Salons Amelia Gere Mason
  • She felt that she had somehow blundered, and her busy mind was speculating as to how.

    The Law-Breakers Ridgwell Cullum
  • He had enjoyed a very bad night speculating on the probable course of events.

    The Art of Disappearing John Talbot Smith
  • His mother simply accused him of not speculating on the political situation.

  • It is often sought to deepen our sense of this tragedy by speculating on what Shelley would have done if he had lived.

    Shelley Sydney Waterlow
British Dictionary definitions for speculating

speculate

/ˈspɛkjʊˌleɪt/
verb
1.
(when transitive, takes a clause as object) to conjecture without knowing the complete facts
2.
(intransitive) to buy or sell securities, property, etc, in the hope of deriving capital gains
3.
(intransitive) to risk loss for the possibility of considerable gain
4.
(intransitive) (NZ, rugby) to make an emergency forward kick of the ball without taking any particular aim
Word Origin
C16: from Latin speculārī to spy out, from specula a watchtower, from specere to look at
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 speculating

speculate

v.

1590s, back-formation from speculation. Related: Speculated; speculating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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16
22
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