Pursuers William Knox and Henry Knox, merchants in Dunbar, supplied barley to brewers in Glasgow and Edinburgh. Knox and Knox alleged that defender William Law, the sheriff of the county of East Lothian, had set the fiar (fixed price) of barley too high. An Act of Sederunt in 1723 established the process by which a sheriff of a given county in Scotland would set friars. The Act required the sheriff to appoint a jury of at least eight landowners in the county, with knowledge of the good at issue, to set the price. According to the pursuers, the sheriff's responsibilities were purely ministerial, setting a price agreeable with the verdict of the jury. Knox and Knox alleged that Law did not comply with the 1723 Act when he set the fiar for barley.
William Morison, The Decisions of the Court of Session (1811), pg. 4420
Sir David Dalyrymple of Hailes, Decisions of the Lords of Council and Session, from 1766 to 1791 (1826), pg. 460