Merchant: The Hebrew word so rendered is from a root meaning "to travel about,"
"to migrate," and hence "a traveller." In the East, in ancient times,
merchants travelled about with their merchandise from place to place
(Genesis 37:25; Job 6:18) and carried on their trade mainly by bartering
(Genesis 37:28; 39:1) After the Hebrews became settled in Palestine they
began to engage in commercial pursuits, which gradually expanded
(Genesis 49:13; Deuteronomy 33:18; Judges 5:17) till in the time of Solomon they are
found in the chief marts of the world
(1 Kings 9:26; 10:11,26,28; 22:48)
(2 Chronicles 1:16; 9:10,21) After Solomon's time their trade with foreign
nations began to decline. After the Exile it again expanded into wider
foreign relations, because now the Jews were scattered in many lands.