Hobson's choice

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Sat Jul 6 05:15:50 UTC 2013

Dave Wilton wrote:
> EEBO has a cite of "Hobson's choise" from 1659.
> Anon, "A Word to Purpose: Or, A Parthian Dart," 1659, n.p.
> pp. 13-14:
> "But is it not meant a Free State, that every one shall be free to do that
> which is good in his own eyes, or that every one shall be free to do what he
> hath power enough to do, or that every one shall be free in Hobson's choise,
> to take, enjoy, or have what the Army will suffer us to take, enjoy, or
> have, or nothing? or Free in paying the Souldiers, or Free to doe what the
> Army would have us."
> And yes, that epitaph does appear to reference his letting out only one
> horse at a time, expressing irony that six horses are pulling his coffin.

Great find! That's another interesting spelling for "choice". Thanks
for searching, Dave.  I found the following spelling in 1715:


{Begin excerpt]
 ... the Crow had only Hobson's Choyce before him; That, or Nothing.
[End excerpt]

Also, thanks to Charlie for this comment about the epitaphs for Hobson


The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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