And it came to pass
Or so it was;
that he tarried many days in Joppa;
conversing with the saints, confirming the disciples, and preaching the Gospel, to the conversion of sinners; and his abode
was with one Simon a tanner;
it seems as if persons of this trade used to dwell in towns near the sea, as fit for their business; so we read of some at Sidon, a city on the sea coast, as Joppa was;
``it happened at Sidon that a certain (yorwb) , "tanner", (the same word here used, adopted into the Hebrew language,) died, and he had a brother a tanner F18''where the Gemara F19 distinguishes between a great tanner and a little tanner; the latter, the gloss says, is one that is poor and has but few skins: which of these Simon was, cannot be said. This business was very contemptible with the Jews; they say F20,
``woe to him whose trade is a tanner:''
and further observe F21 that they never make one a king, nor a high priest: but their doctors many of them were of as mean trades, as shoemakers, skinners (See Gill on Mark 6:3) and Simon the Athenian philosopher was (skutotomov) "a leather cutter" F23; and according to the Ethiopic version, this our Simon was a shoemaker; with him Peter chose to abide, and not with Dorcas.
F18 Misn. Cetubot, c. 7. sect. 10.
F19 T. Bab. Cetubot, fol. 77. 1.
F20 T. Bab. Kiddushin, fol. 82. 2. & Bava Bathra, fol. 16. 2.
F21 Kiddush, fol. 82. 1.
F23 Laert. in Vit. Simon