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SPY. One who goes into a place for the purpose of ascertaining the best way of doing an injury there.
     2. The term is mostly applied to an enemy who comes into the camp for the purpose of ascertaining its situation in order to make an attack upon it. The punishment for, this crime is death. See Articles of War, 1 Story's Laws U. S. 992; Vattel, Droit des Gens. liv. 3, Sec. 179.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
"People have spied on each other ever since people moved apart from each other and wanted to know what their neighbors were doing," says Jennifer Saxon, media relations manager at the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C.
In 1995, a former Russian spy presented evidence that Julius Rosenberg had indeed spied for the Soviet Union.
has spied on its enemies since the days of George Washington (who recruited spies for the Revolutionary Army), the Central Intelligence Agency, the government's most famous spy agency, was only established in 1947.