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Speculate

means to look out of a watch-tower, to spy about (Latin). Metaphorically, to look at a subject with the mind's eye, to spy into it; in commerce, to purchase articles which your mind has speculated on, and has led you to expect will prove profitable. (Specularis lapis is what we should now call window-glass.)

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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