Speculation

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SPECULATION, contracts. The hope or desire of making a profit by the purchase and resale of a thing. Pard. Dr. Com. n. 12. The profit so made; as, be made a good speculation.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in classic literature ?
As the deceased had taken no further notice of his nephew in his lifetime, than sending to his eldest boy (who had been christened after him, on desperate speculation) a silver spoon in a morocco case, which, as he had not too much to eat with it, seemed a kind of satire upon his having been born without that useful article of plate in his mouth, Mr Godfrey Nickleby could, at first, scarcely believe the tidings thus conveyed to him.
Speculation is a round game; the players see little or nothing of their cards at first starting; gains MAY be great--and so may losses.
She assumed a freedom of speculation, then common enough on the other side of the Atlantic, but which our forefathers, had they known it, would have held to be a deadlier crime than that stigmatised by the scarlet letter.
Sir Thomas, after a moment's thought, recommended speculation. He was a whist player himself, and perhaps might feel that it would not much amuse him to have her for a partner.
"Very well," was her ladyship's contented answer; "then speculation, if you please, Mrs.
All the agreeable of her speculation was over for that hour.
We began in this way with an excellent speculation in cattle--buying them for shillings and selling them for pounds.
Finding, from the report of the men who had followed the gig, that he had distanced all pursuit, and having therefore no direct clew to his whereabout, they had been obliged to hunt after him in various directions, on pure speculation. Alicia's letter to her father gave the address of the house at Crickgelly; and to this the runner repaired, on the chance of intercepting or discovering any communications which the doctor might make to his daughter, Screw being taken with the officer to identify the young lady.
Hem, of Leipsic; not by way of explanation, unless the reader may choose to take it so, but because of its intrinsic interest as a singular speculation. This distinguished scientist has expounded his views in a book entitled "Verschwinden und Seine Theorie," which has attracted some attention, "particularly," says one writer, "among the followers of Hegel, and mathematicians who hold to the actual existence of a so- called non-Euclidean space--that is to say, of space which has more dimensions than length, breadth, and thickness--space in which it would be possible to tie a knot in an endless cord and to turn a rubber ball inside out without 'a solution of its continuity,' or in other words, without breaking or cracking it."
But if the word "missing" brings all hope to an end and settles the loss of the underwriters, the word "overdue" confirms the fears already born in many homes ashore, and opens the door of speculation in the market of risks.
Cocky himself was the first to discover that the door was ajar, and was looking at it with speculation (if by "speculation" may be described the mental processes of a bird, in some mysterious way absorbing into its consciousness a fresh impression of its environment and preparing to act, or not act, according to which way the fresh impression modifies its conduct).
"Tingin ko dapat nga mas maaga na tayo na-update, kasi hindi nakakabuti sa atin na may speculations. Sino naman magwi-wish ng ill sa Pangulo?" she told reporters.