Reference > Quotations > John Bartlett, comp. > Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. > 149. John Heywood
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John Bartlett (1820–1905).  Familiar Quotations, 10th ed.  1919.
 
 
NUMBER:149
AUTHOR:John Heywood (1497?–1580?)
QUOTATION:By hooke or crooke. 1
ATTRIBUTION:Proverbes. Part i. Chap. xi.
 
Note 1.
This phrase derives its origin from the custom of certain manors where tenants are authorized to take fire-bote by hook or by crook; that is, so much of the underwood as may be cut with a crook, and so much of the loose timber as may be collected from the boughs by means of a hook. One of the earliest citations of this proverb occurs in John Wycliffe’s Controversial Tracts, circa 1370.—See Skelton, Quotation 5. Francis Rabelais: book v. chap. xiii. Du Bartas: The Map of Man. Edmund Spenser: Faerie Queene, book iii. canto i. st. 17. Beaumont and Fletcher: Women Pleased, act i. sc. 3. [back]
 

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