"a bargain," early 13c., cheffare "buying and selling," also (14c.) cheapfare, probably from Old English ceap "bargain, traffic, gain, sale" (see cheap) + faru "faring, going" (see fare (n.)). In later use, "haggling." The verb is recorded from mid-14c. as "to trade, buy and sell," from 1725 as "to haggle."
1620s, "pertaining to harlots," from Latin meretricius "of or pertaining to prostitutes," from meretrix (genitive meretricis) "prostitute," literally "woman who earns money," from merere, mereri "to earn, gain" (from PIE root *(s)mer- (2) "to get a share of something"). Meaning "gaudily alluring, alluring by false attractions" is from 1630s. Related: Meretriciously; meretriciousness.
"person who scouts, one sent out to gain and bring in information," 1550s, from scout (v.1). Scout-watch (late 14c.) was an old word for "sentinel, guard." Boy Scout is from 1908, as is Scout for a shortening of it. Scout's honor in reference to Boy Scouting is attested from 1908.
"miser, one who makes use of contemptible economy to keep money," 1700, slang; literally "kind of person who would skin a flint to save or gain something," from skin (v.) + flint. Flay-flint in same sense is from 1670s. Among the 18c. slang terms for a miserly person was nipcheese (1785, originally "a ship's purser").
also stakeholder, 1708, "one with whom bets are deposited when a wager is made," from stake (n.2) + agent noun from hold (v.). Originally one with whom bets are deposited when a wager is made. By 1965 as "one who has something to gain or lose" (in a business, etc.), "one who has an interest in" (something).
mid-13c., "income derived from an office, property, transaction, etc.;" c. 1300, "benefit, spiritual benefit, advantage;" from Old French prufit, porfit "profit, gain" (mid-12c.), from Latin profectus "growth, advance, increase, success, progress," noun use of past participle of proficere "accomplish, make progress; be useful, do good; have success, profit," from pro "forward" (from PIE root *per- (1) "forward") + combining form of facere "to make, do" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put"). An Old English word "gain, profit" was gewinn.
From mid-14c. as "use, usefulness." The specific sense of "the advantage or gain resulting to the owner of capita; from its employment in any undertaking, acquisition beyond expenditure" is from c. 1600. Profit margin "what remains when costs involved are deducted from profit" is attested from 1853. Profit-sharing is by 1881.
As used in political economy, profit means what is left of the product of industry after deducting the wages, the price of raw materials, and the rent paid in the production, and is considered as being composed of three parts — interest, risk or insurance, and wages of superintendence. [Century Dictionary]