merchant

noun
mer·​chant | \ ˈmər-chənt How to pronounce merchant (audio) \

Definition of merchant

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a buyer and seller of commodities for profit : trader
2 : the operator of a retail business : storekeeper
3 : one that is noted for a particular quality or activity : specialist a speed merchant on the base paths

merchant

adjective

Definition of merchant (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : of, relating to, used in, or engaged in commerce The city's reputation, though, is as a merchant city in this nation historically known for its traders.— Peter Theroux
2 : of, relating to, or used in a merchant marine part of the merchant fleet One hundred years ago, a group of 11 senators blocked a bill that would have allowed U.S. merchant ships to arm themselves against German U-boats as World War I raged in Europe.— James Hohmann

merchant

verb
merchanted; merchanting; merchants

Definition of merchant (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

archaic : to deal or trade as a merchant

transitive verb

: to deal or trade in

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of merchant in a Sentence

Noun

Merchants traveled hundreds of miles to trade in the city. a family of wealthy merchants The town's merchants closed their shops during the parade. Prizes were given by local merchants.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Executives also hope the card will boost use of Apple Pay, which has been slow to catch on among users and merchants. Peter Rudegeair, WSJ, "Apple, Goldman Sachs Team Up on Credit Card Paired With iPhone," 21 Feb. 2019 In the 19th century they were sold across the world through merchants in Mumbai. The Economist, "From pearls to black goldHow oil transformed the Gulf," 21 June 2018 There will also be some merchants and nonprofit agencies as well. Annie Alleman, Lake County News-Sun, "HarborFest, parade anchor July Fourth week in Waukegan," 21 June 2018 Stanton's reply explained that most U.S. merchants won’t ship directly to Russia. Mark Davis, kansascity, "Overland Park man was looking for an ‘easy job.’ He found a scam with ties to Russia," 30 May 2018 The states in the compact also compensate merchants for the expense of collecting the sales tax. Hiawatha Bray, BostonGlobe.com, "Online tax bills are hugely complicated — more than you ever knew — and small firms are finding that out," 25 June 2018 The high court ruled that Amex has a right to block merchants from steering customers to other credit cards, such as MasterCard and Visa, that have lower fees. Richard Wolf, USA TODAY, "Supreme Court says American Express contract with merchants does not stifle credit card competition," 25 June 2018 Alipay has taken a higher-profile approach, enlisting merchants in Europe and America to accept it as a means of payment for the benefit of Chinese residents and tourists. The Economist, "Paying respectsHow mobile money is spreading," 3 May 2018 Mr Agarwal, once a scrap merchant who built the company over four decades, has prided himself on understanding India better than foreign interlopers trying to make a quick rupee. The Economist, "Shootings in India tarnish Vedanta’s reputation," 31 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

So basically merchant refineries should not be the ones that have to purchase these credits or blend the ethanol. Jacob Weisberg, Slate Magazine, "The Obscure EPA Rule That Brought Down a Trump Adviser," 23 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'merchant.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of merchant

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

15th century , in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for merchant

Noun

Middle English marchant, from Anglo-French, from Vulgar Latin *mercatant-, mercatans, from present participle of mercatare to trade, frequentative of Latin mercari — more at market

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about merchant

Statistics for merchant

Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for merchant

The first known use of merchant was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for merchant

merchant

noun

English Language Learners Definition of merchant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

somewhat old-fashioned : someone who buys and sells goods especially in large amounts
chiefly US or Scotland : the owner or manager of a store
informal : someone who is known for a particular quality, activity, etc.

merchant

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of merchant (Entry 2 of 2)

: used for or involved in trading goods

merchant

noun
mer·​chant | \ ˈmər-chənt How to pronounce merchant (audio) \

Kids Definition of merchant

1 : a person who buys and sells goods especially on a large scale or with foreign countries

merchant

noun
mer·​chant | \ ˈmər-chənt How to pronounce merchant (audio) \

Legal Definition of merchant

: a person who trades in goods especially of a certain kind and possesses expertise in the area of the goods and the practices of trading in them or who employs others with such expertise a warranty that the goods shall be merchantable is implied in a contract for their sale if the seller is a merchant with respect to goods of that kindUniform Commercial Code

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on merchant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for merchant

Spanish Central: Translation of merchant

Nglish: Translation of merchant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of merchant for Arabic Speakers

Comments on merchant

What made you want to look up merchant? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a shady place in a garden or forest

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt-painting-a-young-scholar-and-his-tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!