Trading in the city is a common right of all peers of the city, but certain persons contrary to city custom have the practice of using several of their servants, or others whom they claim to be their servants or representatives, in order to purchase multiple shares in merchandize to the disadvantage of peers. Henceforth no-one is to make purchases except personally or through a single servant only, so that his fellow citizens who may wish to join in purchasing the same merchandize are not prevented from having an equal share, as they ought. Whoever is convicted of contravening this, as result of a complaint or an action taken by the bailiffs, is to be heavily amerced and the complainant is to recover damages and his share in the bargain. If no complaint is made at the time of the offence, but one is later revealed to have been committed, the bailiffs should make enquiry and punish the guilty in a way designed to deter others and avoid the scandal such offences bring on the city, lest the community is compelled to apply a remedy by the bailiffs' failure to act.
[It was a fundamental right of freemen to be able to claim a share in any mercantile bargain made by one of their fellows, if they were present when the bargain was made. Only in special cases could they claim a share if not present. The use of multiple representatives undermined this equal shares principle, and favoured the urban upper class, which supplied most bailiffs perhaps explaining the final clause of this chapter, suggesting that the bailiffs might be reluctant to investigate such abuses in absence of a specific complaint, and producing a statement of the source of political authority in towns. ]