A Charter granted to Bristol by King Edward III in 1347 gave the City the right to arrest people disturbing the peace at night and to punish bakers who broke the Assize of Bread, that is, who sold bread under an agreed weight.  The Assize was a way of controlling the price of bread, and avoiding public disorder when grain was scarce and expensive.  Amongst other punishments, the offending baker would be drawn through the streets on a sledge, and no doubt people would throw rotten vegetables and stale bread (or worse) at him.

The illustrated initial letter of the City Charter of Edward III shows a baker being punished for selling underweight bread.  The lightweight loaf is tied around his neck, and the scales used to defraud customers hung above him.

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