Spec·u·late v. i. [imp. & p. p. Speculated p. pr. & vb. n. Speculating.]
1. To consider by turning a subject in the mind, and viewing it in its different aspects and relations; to meditate; to contemplate; to theorize; as, to speculate on questions in religion; to speculate on political events.
It is remarkable that persons who speculate the most boldly often conform with the most pefect quietude to the external regulations of society. --Hawthorne.
2. Philos. To view subjects from certain premises given or assumed, and infer conclusions respecting them a priori.
3. Com. To purchase with the expectation of a contingent advance in value, and a consequent sale at a profit; -- often, in a somewhat depreciative sense, of unsound or hazardous transactions; as, to speculate in coffee, in sugar, or in bank stock.
Spec·u·late, v. t. To consider attentively; as, to speculate the nature of a thing. [R.]
v 1: to believe especially on uncertain or tentative grounds;
"Scientists supposed that large dinosaurs lived in
swamps" [syn: theorize, theorise, conjecture, hypothesize,
hypothesise, hypothecate, suppose]
2: talk over conjecturally, or review in an idle or casual way
and with an element of doubt or without sufficient reason
to reach a conclusion; "We were speculating whether the
President had to resign after the scandal"
3: reflect deeply on a subject; "I mulled over the events of
the afternoon"; "philosophers have speculated on the
question of God for thousands of years"; "The scientist
must stop to observe and start to excogitate" [syn: chew
over, think over, meditate, ponder, excogitate, contemplate,
muse, reflect, mull, mull over, ruminate]
4: invest at a risk; "I bought this house not because I want to
live in it but to sell it later at a good price, so I am
speculating" [syn: job]