Delegates non potest delegare. This legal phrase, which comes from the Latin language, means that a “delegate cannot delegate”.
A person to whom powers are delegated cannot authorise another person to carry out the specific function with which he has been entrusted. For example, if a shipbroker is engaged to sell a ship and fails to do so, because he cannot obtain the required price, he cannot then ask another agent to sell the ship. Mere administrative functions, such as the signing of bills of lading, can be delegated by the master of a ship (who is an agent of the owner) to the port agent.