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as in:  a speculative venture

I’m too old to invest in speculative business enterprises.
  uncertain — especially in reference to a profit-making investment or venture


inclined to guess and think about subjects where there is no certainty
 Mark word for later review on this computer
Strongly Associated with:   speculate
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  • I’m too old to invest in speculative business enterprises.
  • My speculative sister, she of the rocket-science brain and the rodeo spirit, dropped out of college and moved to Manhattan in the late ’90s.
    Gillian Flynn  --  Gone Girl
  • He sounds just like my dad on one of his speculative rants, and suddenly I’m annoyed, I’m not sure why.
    Rick Yancey  --  The 5th Wave
  • Indeed, I suspected that many pairs of lupine eyes were already watching me with speculative interest.
    Farley Mowat  --  Never Cry Wolf

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  • I gave the lute’s neck a sour, speculative look.
    Patrick Rothfuss  --  The Name of the Wind
  • How long Sophie had been gazing down I could not tell, of course, but I had the uneasy feeling that it had been for quite a spell; the expression she wore was sweet, speculative, not without humor.
    William Styron  --  Sophie’s Choice
  • Their eyes during these conversations look dewy, blurred, pulpy, easily hurt, like the eyes of blind baby kittens; but also sly and speculative, and filled with greed and deceit.
    Margaret Atwood  --  Cat’s Eye
  • His mouth held a neutral line, but I detected a speculative smile trapped behind it.
    Becca Fitzpatrick  --  Hush, Hush
  • He was hustling me out the door before I had time to do more than register the extraordinary look of speculative acquisitiveness on the face of the redcoat officer.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • Once out of the lobby, I ducked into the doorway of the florist next door to check my messages and text Kitsey before heading downtown, just in case; if she was just getting out of her movie, I could meet her for dinner and a drink (alone, without the girlfriends: the weirdness of the incident seemed to call for it) and —definitely —a speculative and humorous talk on the behavior of Em.
    Donna Tartt  --  The Goldfinch

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  • He noticed her speculative look.
    Nora Roberts  --  Dark Witch
  • Though my interests lie less in the area of romance and more in the speculative nature of things.
    Kate DiCamillo  --  Flora & Ulysses
  • The search for new weapons continues unceasingly, and is one of the very few remaining activities in which the inventive or speculative type of mind can find any outlet.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • I think his broad brow to be full of a prairie-like placidity, born of a speculative indifference as to death.
    Herman Melville  --  Moby Dick
  • Ian tilted his head to one side, his expression speculative.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  The Host
  • And, if you remember, Hammond’s plan was extremely speculative.
    Michael Crichton  --  Jurassic Park
  • The Inquisitor’s colorless lashes grazed her cheeks as she narrowed her eyes, her gaze speculative.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Ashes
  • He fixed her with a speculative expression.
    Nicholas Sparks  --  The Lucky One
  • Although there may be some truth in both hypotheses, this sort of posthumous off-the-rack psychoanalysis is a dubious, highly speculative enterprise that inevitably demeans and trivializes the absent analysand.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
  • Thoughts speculative their unsure hopes relate; But certain issue strokes must arbitrate: Towards which advance the war.
    William Shakespeare  --  Macbeth
  • She eyed me with a look that was much more speculative than it was resigned, and then reached out to take my hand.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  Breaking Dawn
  • Jack’s eyes bad fluttered open again and this time Daddy was looking directly at him, his gaze strangely flat and speculative.
    Stephen King  --  The Shining
  • He looked over the remainder of the team with a speculative eye that summed up instantly the salient traits of each animal.
    Jack London  --  White Fang
  • We crossed a walk to the other part of the academy, where, as I have already said, the projectors in speculative learning resided.
    Jonathan Swift  --  Gulliver’s Travels
  • Of course, this is highly speculative.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into Thin Air
  • My particular province is speculative philosophy.
    H.G. Wells  --  The War of the Worlds
  • Kynes directed a speculative look at Jessica, gave a subtle hand signal to Tuek.
    Frank Herbert  --  Dune
  • Many of them sat languidly along the benches or milled in the aisles discussing the trial in hushed and speculative tones.
    David Guterson  --  Snow Falling on Cedars
  • Abruptly, Jacob’s expression shifted, and he was staring at Edward with an odd, speculative expression.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  Eclipse
  • She looked at him, speculative.
    William Faulkner  --  Light in August
  • Francie took a speculative look at the Pennsylvania fellow standing ten feet away.
    Betty Smith  --  A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
  • Rhett watched the train until it was out of sight and on his face there was a look of speculative bitterness that was not pleasant.
    Margaret Mitchell  --  Gone with the Wind
  • Consider the wastes incidental to the blind and haphazard production of commodities—the factories closed, the workers idle, the goods spoiling in storage; consider the activities of the stock manipulator, the paralyzing of whole industries, the overstimulation of others, for speculative purposes; the assignments and bank failures, the crises and panics, the deserted towns and the starving populations!
    Upton Sinclair  --  The Jungle
  • It was an ambiguous, speculative look.
    Robert Penn Warren  --  All the King’s Men
  • Indian, Greek, and Norse mythology all have obvious leanings toward a philosophic, or "speculative," view of the world.
    Jostein Gaarder  --  Sophie’s World
  • When sorrow ceases to be speculative, sleep sees her opportunity.
    Thomas Hardy  --  Tess of the d’Urbervilles
  • A thin man in a stained leather vest with embroidery on the front was watching John Grady with narrowed and speculative eyes.
    Cormac McCarthy  --  All the Pretty Horses
  • Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, was speculative and irresolute, and we have a great tragedy in consequence.
    George Eliot  --  The Mill on the Floss
  • Conway had no desire to discuss the matter further in a merely speculative way; there had been enough of that during the journey.
    James Hilton  --  Lost Horizon
  • X. The Barnards Elizabeth Barnard’s parents lived in a minute bungalow, one of fifty or so recently run up by a speculative builder on the confines of the town.
    Agatha Christie  --  The ABC Murders
  • Morris had a speculative idea that she had a little property; but he naturally did not press this.
    Henry James  --  Washington Square
  • Dispositions more boldly speculative may derive a stern enjoyment from the discovery, since there must be evil in the world, that a high man is as likely to grasp his share of it as a low one.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The House of the Seven Gables
  • …young affects In me defunct,—and proper satisfaction; But to be free and bounteous to her mind: And heaven defend your good souls, that you think I will your serious and great business scant For she is with me: no, when light-wing’d toys Of feather’d Cupid seel with wanton dullness My speculative and offic’d instruments, That my disports corrupt and taint my business, Let housewives make a skillet of my helm, And all indign and base adversities Make head against my estimation!
    William Shakespeare  --  Othello, the Moor of Venice
  • Larry, too, was quiet, though in a more speculative way than Brian.
    Nicholas Sparks  --  A Bend in the Road
  • Nevertheless, there was a peculiar quietness in the look, as if taking merely a speculative, not a human interest, in the young man.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  Rappaccini’s Daughter
  • Percy Driscoll had worn himself out in trying to save his great speculative landed estate, and had died without succeeding.
    Mark Twain  --  Pudd’nhead Wilson
  • I concluded, at length, that the mere speculative conviction that it was our interest to be completely virtuous, was not sufficient to prevent our slipping; and that the contrary habits must be broken, and good ones acquired and established, before we can have any dependence on a steady, uniform rectitude of conduct.
    Benjamin Franklin  --  The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
  • Her mother too, in whose mind not one speculative thought of their marriage had been raised, by his prospect of riches, was led before the end of a week to hope and expect it; and secretly to congratulate herself on having gained two such sons-in-law as Edward and Willoughby.
    Jane Austen  --  Sense and Sensibility
  • Have you never made a speculative investment?
    Agatha Christie  --  Early Cases Of Hercule Poirot
  • Having no close relatives, and approaching an age beyond which she could not reasonably hope for a proposal of marriage, and when even speculative second looks from rakish or lonely widowers had grown rare, her whole life centered in the office.
    Pat Frank  --  Alas, Babylon
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Associated words [difficulty]:   speculative [3] , speculate [1]
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Most commonly used in these subjects:   Personal Finance, Business, Human Behavior, Philosophy, Logic & Reasoning
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