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merchant

Syllabification: mer·chant
Pronunciation: /ˈmərCHənt
 
/

Definition of merchant in English:

noun

1A person or company involved in wholesale trade, especially one dealing with foreign countries or supplying merchandise to a particular trade: the area’s leading timber merchant a tea merchant
More example sentences
  • Some of the well-known family businesses include timber merchants and builders' providers the McMahon Group.
  • On the Chinese side, the Canton authorities limited trade with the foreign merchants to a group of Chinese merchant houses, the Hongs, nominally thirteen in number.
  • In the printing industry, for example, very large printers obtain their inks direct from manufacturers, while smaller printers tend to rely on wholesale merchants.
1.1chiefly North American A retail trader; a store owner: the credit cards are accepted by 10 million merchants worldwide
More example sentences
  • All Pro projects that the products will bring in more than $8-million in retail sales to area merchants.
  • Inside the walls were the rest, the ones who fell into the middle, the lower merchants, traders, dealers, hawkers, along with business of all kinds crammed into the walls.
  • Most of these marketing efforts were directed toward retail merchants.
Synonyms
trader, dealer, wholesaler, broker, agent, seller, buyer, buyer and seller, vendor, distributor, peddler, retailer, shopkeeper, storekeeper
1.2(Especially in historical contexts) a person involved in trade or commerce: prosperous merchants and clothiers had established a middle class
More example sentences
  • He also initiated trade between the Franks and the Muslims and made commercial pacts with the merchants of Venice who traded with both Byzantium and Islam.
  • In virtue of the abundant salt produced in Shanxi, the earliest Shanxi merchants arrived on the historical stage.
  • It was founded high on a series of hills by prosperous Saxon merchants in the Middle Ages.
2 [usually with modifier] informal , chiefly derogatory A person with a partiality or aptitude for a particular activity or viewpoint: his driver was no speed merchant a merchant of death
More example sentences
  • I have only heard what Jimmy told me, which was told to him by Lawrence, the Champion embellisher wind-up merchant - he spread it round the neighbourhood we were lost in the Maldives.
  • A rarity from the archives, this solo album was recorded for the Japanese market a quarter of a century ago, when he was almost as well known as the thinking person's funk merchant as a straightahead pianist.
  • I work in internet advertising (but not in sales, I have my pride) so sometimes the spam merchant techniques to grab people's attention will perk my interest.

adjective

[attributive] Back to top  
1Of or relating to merchants, trade, or commerce: the growth of the merchant classes
More example sentences
  • At this stage in history, the merchant class, desperate for money to finance their adventures, struggled with the monopoly of the moneylenders and overcame it.
  • In the end, it will be commerce and the merchant class that will provide, and they will have to go it alone, without the help of superpowers.
  • Toward the left foreground are the small yellow houses of the common people; note the red roofs of the merchant class, clustered around the open bazaar.
1.1(Of ships, sailors, or shipping activity) involved with commerce rather than military activity: a merchant seaman
More example sentences
  • She gave protection to the merchant ships and sailors, and gave those ashore confidence that the vital supplies would always get through under her watchful eye.
  • The rest of his young adulthood became a quest for financial security, and he shipped out as a merchant sailor.
  • Built of English oak and Cornish elm, they are traditionally designed and locally built rowing boats originally used to deliver pilots to incoming merchant ships.

Origin

Middle English: from Old French marchant, based on Latin mercari 'to trade', from merx, merc- 'merchandise'.

Words that rhyme with merchant

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