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  • Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Sweepstake A complete removal or carrying away; a clean sweep.
    • Sweepstake A winning of all the stakes or prizes.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n sweepstake A game of cards, in which apparently a player could take all the tricks or win all the stakes.
    • n sweepstake Same as sweepstakes.
    • sweepstake By winning and taking all the stakes at once; hence, by wholesale; indiscriminately.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • Sweepstake (Shak.) one who wins all—usually in Sweep′stakes
    • ***


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. swápan; Ger. schweifen, Cf. Swoop.


In literature:

Then he distinguished himself at Pueblo by winning a handicap sweepstakes where the odds were heavy against him.
"Lippincott's Magazine, November 1885" by Various
The world is informed of a series of sweepstakes, in which guardsmen and peers and foreigners of distinction take part.
"Modern Women and What is Said of Them" by Anonymous
The young Sweepstakes are to get theirs made first for patterns.
"Forgotten Tales of Long Ago" by E. V. Lucas
She had her up in a jiffy and now she is heading her straight for the sweepstakes.
"The Paliser case" by Edgar Saltus
There's a man in the regiment who has 'em sent up from Bombay, and we have a sweepstake for the quickest solutions.
"An Unknown Lover" by Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey
Our best plan would be to take the Sweepstakes.
"No Moss" by Harry Castlemon
You don't bar me from entering for sweepstakes.
"A Mysterious Disappearance" by Gordon Holmes
Although we in the West think of Japan as a newcomer in the high-tech sweepstakes, it actually has a long tradition of innovation.
"The Samurai Strategy" by Thomas Hoover
The sweepstakes of 28 subscribers, at 10s.
"Norfolk Annals A Chronological Record of Remarkable Events in the Nineteeth Century, Vol. 1" by Charles Mackie
By the way, let us have a sweepstake on the time we drop anchor in South Bay.
"Geoffrey Hampstead" by Thomas Stinson Jarvis
Dam MAYFLOWER (1399) by Megunticook (251); 2d dam Leonora (1371) by Sweepstakes imported from the herd of the Duke of Norfolk, England.
"Herd Record of the Association of Breeders of Thorough-Bred Neat Stock" by Various
Out of courtesy to him I took a ticket in a sweepstake in which he was concerned, but in which I felt no interest.
"Bygones Worth Remembering, Vol. 2 (of 2)" by George Jacob Holyoake
This grass-land would be grand for a racer or two; I've my eye on the Melton sweepstakes yet.
"A Terrible Tomboy" by Angela Brazil
The lay preachers are carrying off the sweepstakes.
"Unicorns" by James Huneker
In the following year the earl established a sweepstake of 50 sovs.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 13, Slice 6" by Various
They talk about getting up a sweepstake in the office.
"The Crime and the Criminal" by Richard Marsh
Moreover, we are told that at a meeting of 1803 sweepstakes were offered for guessing the correct weight of a wether.
"Makers of Modern Agriculture" by William Macdonald
I have in my mind at this moment the drawing of a certain sweepstakes.
"Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 108, June 8, 1895" by Various
The latter were to be known as the "All-Alaska Sweepstakes," and as such the races have been known ever since.
"The Land of Tomorrow" by William B Stephenson, Jr.
A large sweepstake on the date of the relief has been started for all European troops.
"The Secrets of a Kuttite" by Edward O. Mousley

In poetry:

You always read about it:
the plumber with the twelve children
who wins the Irish Sweepstakes.
From toilets to riches.
That story.
"Cinderella" by Anne Sexton

In news:

Salute to Service Local Legends take Flight Sweepstakes Rules.
Last year about this time, I wrote a Forbes post stating that before Michigan State even played its bowl game it had already lost the BCS sweepstakes.
Quikrete, a manufacturer of packaged concrete products for the building and home improvement markets, has announced the six winners of the Quikrete "What America's Made Of" sweepstakes.
Recently I received a letter saying I'd won a $250,000 sweepstakes prize.
The grand prize winner of the sweepstakes competition is Cory Uttech of Sheboygan.
Handicapping the Carmelo Anthony sweepstakes.
Arizona Midday Hyatt Regency Phoenix Hotel OFFICIAL SWEEPSTAKES RULES.
Ohio bill seeks to regulate sweepstakes devices at internet cafes.
Marvin Fong, The Plain Dealer A bill in the Ohio legislature would regulate sweepstakes devices at internet cafes.
There seemed to be plenty of reasons for Dallas fans to lament over the summer when the Mavericks lost out on the Deron Williams free agency sweepstakes.
Seven years later, Sox rejoin Beltran sweepstakes.
The New iPad Sweepstakes Rules.
Apple iPhone 5 (Gift Card) Sweepstakes .
How to enter the "iPhone" sweepstakes .

In science:

The neutrino mechanism, legitimately the front-runner in the CCSN mechanism sweepstakes, has engendered much speculation concerning the physical conditions for explosion.
Perspectives on Core-Collapse Supernova Theory