Christiany & Islamic Opinion on Merchants

Views on Merchants DBQ

Trade was a benefiting factor in many ways, but merchants were not always looked at in a positive way by Christianity and Islamic society. These documents from both religions talk about the way a merchant should sell, the morality a merchant should have, and acceptance in the later centuries.
Merchants who were selling at a higher price than originally bought were not accepted in Islamic document #5. A leading Muslim scholar during the fourteenth century said,”…Lead to a decrease and weakening in virtue and manliness. For these acts inevitably affect the soul.” In document 4, the holy bible is quoted by Thomas Aquinas which states that no man should sell a thing to another man for more than its worth, and it is unjust and lawful.
The morality of merchants in document 3 is told in a story in which a merchant has achieved great riches and wealth but then “began to yearn for solitude, and to hold his merchandise in less esteem than heretofore, he began to think of spending on charity to God’s honor and service.” In documents one and two, both are religious writings and are not for merchants. The Christian Bible says that a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. And the Qur’an says,” Woe to the cheaters! When they measure …..And give less than is due.
During the later centuries merchants are becoming more acceptable. In document 7, Islamic court decisions are disputing cotton prices and the right owner. It shows hesitation but acceptance in this court trial between merchant and trade ideas. Document 6 shows letters between merchants and reminders that by God’s they have suffice wealth in being merchants and shows their tolerance.
Christianity and Islamic attitudes toward merchants from the religions’ origin until about 1500 was conflicting, but was more tolerable in the 15th and 17th century.