from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The business of buying and selling commodities, products, or services; commerce. synonym: business.
  • noun A branch or kind of business.
  • noun The people working in or associated with a business or industry.
  • noun The activity or volume of buying or selling.
  • noun An exchange of one thing for another.
  • noun An occupation, especially one requiring skilled labor; craft.
  • noun The trade winds.
  • intransitive verb To engage in buying and selling for profit.
  • intransitive verb To make an exchange of one thing for another.
  • intransitive verb To be offered for sale or be sold.
  • intransitive verb To shop or buy regularly.
  • intransitive verb To give in exchange for something else.
  • intransitive verb To buy and sell (stocks, for example).
  • intransitive verb To pass back and forth.
  • adjective Of or relating to trade or commerce.
  • adjective Relating to, used by, or serving a particular trade.
  • adjective Of or relating to books that are primarily published to be sold commercially, as in bookstores.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Commodities designed for use in trading.
  • noun A trade-wind: used commonly in the plural.
  • noun An obsolete preterit of tread.
  • To take or keep one's course; pass; move; proceed.
  • To engage in trade; engage in the exchange, purchase, or sale of goods, wares, and merchandise, or anything else; barter; buy and sell; traffic; carry on commerce as a business: with in before the thing bought and sold.
  • To buy and sell or to exchange property in a specific instance: as, A traded with B for a horse or a number of sheep.
  • To engage in affairs generally; have dealings or transactions.
  • To carry merchandise; voyage or ply as a merchant or merchantman.
  • To pass; spend.
  • To frequent for purposes of trade.
  • To sell or exchange in commerce; barter; buy and sell.
  • noun A footstep; track; trace; trail.
  • noun Path; way; course.
  • noun The bearing part of the felly of a wheel; the tread of a wheel.
  • noun Course of action or effort.
  • noun Way of life; customary mode or course of action; habit or manner of life; habit; custom; practice.
  • noun Business pursued; occupation.
  • noun Specifically, the craft or business which a person has learned and which he carries on as a means of livelihood or for profit; occupation; particularly, mechanical or mercantile employment; a handicraft, as distinguished from one of the liberal arts or of the learned professions, and from agriculture.
  • noun The exchange of commodities for other commodities or for money; the business of buying and selling; dealing by way of sale or exchange; commerce; traffic.
  • noun The persons engaged in the same occupation or line of business: as, the book- trade.
  • noun A purchase or sale; a bargain; specifically, in United States politics, a deal.
  • noun The implements, collectively, of any occupation.
  • noun Stuff: often used contemptuously in the sense of ‘rubbish.’
  • noun In Great Britain, a committee of the Privy Council which has, to a large extent, the supervision of British commerce and industry. At its head are the President of the Board of Trade, who is usually a member of the Cabinet, the parliamentary secretary (formerly vice-president), the permanent secretary, and six assistant secretaries at the head of six departments—the commercial, harbor, finance, railway, marine, and fisheries. Attached to the Board of Trade are also the bankruptcy and emigration departments, the Patent Office, etc. A committee for trade and the plantations existed for a short time in the reign of Charles II. The council of trade was again constituted in the reign of William III., but discontinued in 1782. In 1786 the Board of Trade was organized, and its functions were subsequently greatly extended.
  • noun Synonyms and
  • noun Pursuit, Vocation, etc. See occupation.
  • Pertaining to or characteristic of trade, or of a particular trade: as, a trade practice; a trade ball or dinner; trade organizations.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To sell or exchange in commerce; to barter.
  • intransitive verb To barter, or to buy and sell; to be engaged in the exchange, purchase, or sale of goods, wares, merchandise, or anything else; to traffic; to bargain; to carry on commerce as a business.


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, course, from Middle Low German.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English trade ("path, course of conduct"), cognate with Old English tredan ("tread"); See Online Etymology Dictionary


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  • It is called (in contradistinction to the foreign slave trade) _ "the internal slave trade_."

    My Bondage and My Freedom Frederick Douglass 1856

  • According to divers masters in the art of ethics now flourishing among ourselves, more especially in the atmosphere of the journals of the commercial communities, the people that "_can_ trade and _won't_ trade, _must be made to trade_."

    Afloat and Ashore A Sea Tale James Fenimore Cooper 1820

  • This miscreant lives unnoticed, in a little village near Paris, upon a slender income, which he has made in trade, not in the _trade of blood_; for it appears that Robespierre was not a very liberal patron of his servants.

    The Stranger in France or, a Tour from Devonshire to Paris Illustrated by Engravings in Aqua Tint of Sketches Taken on the Spot. John Carr 1802

  • Is better than a potential team of, if they trade for him, Rose, Gordon, Deng/Salmons (* one of them go in a trade*), CHRIS BOSH, and TT/Noah, obviously wants the Bulls to be garbage or ...

    Yahoo! Sports - Top News 2009

  • Before the commencement of the troubles of France, the universal cry in that country was "liberty and trade," and now their ports were completely shut to trade*

    The Parliamentary Register: Or an Impartial Report of the Debates that Have Occured in the Two ... 1813

  • With a view to give both these questions a full and separate discussion, he had framed tvty distinct resolutions, one oi jrlpch (the second in the series) went to declare that the restraint upon the China trade, as now bylaw esta - blished* should still exist; in fatt, that the East India com-* pany should beseemed in their monopoly of that trade*.

    The Parliamentary Register: Or an Impartial Report of the Debates that Have Occured in the Two ... 1813

  • The system of Dr. Smith tended to the production of that natural freedom of trade, each step toward which would have been attended with improvement in the condition of the people, and increase in the _power to trade_, thus affording proof conclusive of the soundness of the doctrine; whereas every step in the direction now known as free trade is attended with deterioration of condition, and _increased necessity_ for trade, with _diminished power_ to trade.

    The slave trade, domestic and foreign Why It Exists, and How It May Be Extinguished 1836

  • The term "trade area" is not explicitly defined, leaving that to the liquor board or the courts to eventually decide.

    The Seattle Times 2011

  • And there were beads and blankets and scarlet cloths, such as I got in trade from the people who lived to the east, and who got them in trade from the people who lived still beyond in the east.

    An Odyssey of the North 2010

  • Ounenk offered me a kayak, new-made, and a gun which he got in trade from the Hungry Folk.



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