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The book of trades; or, Familiar descriptions of the most useful trades, manufactures, and arts practised in England: and the manner in which the workmen perform their various employments.
(undated, inscribed 1829)

The auctioneer.,   p. 6

Page 6

  THE business of an Auctioneer is to sell
by Auction certain Lands, Houses, House-
hold Furniture, or other Effects, which may
be consigned to him for Public Sale. The
Romans, by whom it appears Sales were first
instituted, originally performed it under a
spear, which was stuck up on that occasion,
when the public Crier came forward and
offered the Goods, attended by a Magistrate,
who was bound to see them safely delivered
to the highest bidder. In England, sales
have become very common of late years;
which may be principally owing to the nu-
merous Bankrupts that have appeared in the
Gazette. The Auctioneer generally pro-
ceeds by first taking an inventory of all the
goods, which he afterwards puts in Lots,
which are described by a printed Catalogue.
The Sale is most frequently Advertised in
the public Newspapers. On the commence-
ment of it, the Auctioneer ascends a pulpit
erected at the end of a spacious Room, where
he reads the conditions, and then proceeds
to sell to the highest bidder, who is bound
to take his purchase, or forfeit a certain
deposit: when this occurs, the lot is gene-
rally put up again and re-sold, and the de-
ficiency made good by the defaulter.

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