Encyclopedia of Jewish History and Culture Online

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Peddlers
(1,475 words)

In premodern Europe, and in some cases beyond, peddling was a characteristically Jewish occupation. The work of the travelling peddler who went door to door to offer his wares allowed certain sections of the Jewish lower classes to earn their livelihood over generations. With the emergence of the industrial society and the Jewish rise into the middle class, the trade disappeared almost completely among Jews in Central and Western Europe, while it could still sometimes be found in Eastern Europe up until the Second World War.

Jewish peddlers can be shown to have existed in most Eu…

Cite this page
Richarz, Monika, “Peddlers”, in: Encyclopedia of Jewish History and Culture Online, Original German Language Edition: Enzyklopädie Jüdischer Geschichte und Kultur. Im Auftrag der Sächsischen Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Leipzig herausgegeben von Dan Diner. © J.B. Metzler, Stuttgart/Springer-Verlag GmbH Deutschland 2011–2017. Consulted online on 25 July 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2468-8894_ejhc_COM_0298>
First published online: 2017
First print edition: 20210312



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