Statuta de Forstallariis (Statute of Forestallers), c. 1300
Of the various mercantile statutes, the Statute of Forestallers appears in very few
of the Common Law statute books. Prohibiting forestalling, an activity of middlemen
designed to drive up prices, the statute first appears in books written at the beginning
of the fourteenth century (See: R. H. Britnell, "Forstall, Forestalling and the
Statute of Forestallers," EHR 102 (1987): 89-102).
And also Forestallers, that buy any thing afore the due and accustomed hour ["hour
which is due and appointed in the Town"?] against the good state and regulation of
the town and market, or that pass out of the town to meet such things as come to the
market, and buy outside of the town, to the intent that they may sell the same in the town
more dearly, that utter it more dear than they would that brought it, in case they had
come to the town or market. And their names shall be presented distinctly and openly, and
they be amerced for every default, or to be judged to the Tumbrel, if they forestall
contrary to the statute.
From: A. Luders, ed., The Statutes of the Realm: Printed by Command of His Majesty
King George the Third, in Pursuance of an Address of the House of Commons of Great
Britain, From Original Records and Authentic Manuscripts, 11 vols., (London: Record
Commission, 1810-1828), Vol. I, p. 202.
Scanned by Jerome S. Arkenberg, Cal. State Fullerton. The text may have been modernized
by Prof. Arkenberg.
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© Paul Halsall, August 1998