what the market will bear


Senior Member
I came across the phrase "what the market will bear." For example, "His strategy is to charge what the market will bear."
I understand it means the highest price you can sell your goods at in the market.
But in this case, what does the word "bear" mean?
The verb "bear" has a lot of meanings: stand, support, produce, give birth to, carry....
I was wondering which the word "bear" means. Maybe "support"?

Does anyone know?
  • "Bear" here means "accept" or "tolerate." You have to imagine the market as, for example, a beast of burden that can only carry ("bear") so much. If the price goes higher, the market can no longer bear it and something will happen.
    Thank you, Miss Julie, Chris K, and sdgraham!

    I clearly understand its meaning now. I also understand why "bear" can mean both "carry" and "tolerate."