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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Wholesale \Whole"sale`\, n. Sale of goods by the piece or large quantity, as distinguished from retail. [1913 Webster] By wholesale, in the mass; in large quantities; without distinction or discrimination. [1913 Webster] Some, from vanity or envy, despise a valuable book, and throw contempt upon it by wholesale. --I. Watts. [1913 Webster]