Samuel Foote

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A portrait of Samuel Foote in 1769

Samuel Foote (January 1720 – October 21, 1777) was an English dramatist, actor and theatre manager from Cornwall.


  • Play me no plays.
    • The Knights (1748, published 1754), act ii.
  • Born in a cellar, and living in a garret.
    • The Author (1757), Act ii. Compare: "Born in the garret, in the kitchen bred", Lord Byron, A Sketch; "I came up stairs into the world, for I was born in a cellar" William Congreve, Love for Love, Act ii, Scene 7.
  • He made him a hut, wherein he did put
    The carcass of Robinson Crusoe.
    O poor Robinson Crusoe!
    • The Mayor of Garratt (1763, published 1764), Act i, Scene 1.
  • "Foote," (said lord Sandwich) "I have often wondered what catastrophe would bring you to your end; but I think, that you must either die of the p-x, or the halter."
    "My lord," (replied Foote instantaneously) "that will depend upon one of two contingencies; — whether I embrace your lordship's mistress, or your lordship's principles."
    • Percival Stockdale, The Memoirs of the Life and Writings of Percival Stockdale (1809), quoted in The Yale Book of Quotations, ed. Fred R. Shapiro, 2006, Yale University Press.

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