What is the X in X-mas?
1560s, "buying and selling," verbal noun from market (v.). Meaning "produce bought at a market" is from 1701. The business sense, "process of moving goods from producer to consumer with emphasis on advertising and sales," is attested by 1897.
early 12c., "a meeting at a fixed time for buying and selling livestock and provisions," from Old North French market "marketplace, trade, commerce" (Old French marchiet, Modern French marché), from Latin mercatus "trading, buying and selling, trade, market" (source of Italian mercato, Spanish mercado, Dutch markt, German Markt), from past participle of mercari "to trade, deal in, buy," from merx (genitive mercis) "wares, merchandise," from Italic root *merk-, possibly from Etruscan, referring to various aspects of economics. Meaning "public building or space where markets are held" first attested mid-13c. Sense of "sales, as controlled by supply and demand" is from 1680s. Market value (1690s) first attested in writings of John Locke. Market economy is from 1948; market research is from 1921.
1630s, from market (n.). Related: Marketed; marketing.