Facts of the Case – Fisher v Bell 1961

The litigant retailer showed in his shop window a flick blade joined by a value ticket showed simply behind it. He was accused of offering available to be purchased a flick blade, in spite of s. (1) of the Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act 1959.


The issue was whether the presentation of the blade established a proposal available to be purchased (in which case the respondent was liable) or a challenge to treat (wherein case he was most certainly not).


The court held that as per the overall standards of agreement law, the showcase of the blade was not a proposal of offer but rather only a challenge to treat, and as such the respondent had not offered the blade available to be purchased inside the importance of s1(1) of the Act. Despite the fact that it was recognized that in conventional language a layman should seriously think about the blade to be offered available to be purchased, in lawful terms its situation in the window was welcoming clients to offer to get it. The rule should be interpreted as per the legitimate importance, as

“… any resolution should be taken a gander at considering the overall law of the country, for Parliament should be taken to know the overall law” (per Lord Parker C.J. at para. 4).

It is grounded in agreement law that the showcase of a thing in a shop window is a solicitation to expected clients to treat. The litigant was consequently not liable of the offense with which he had been charged.