Reference > Quotations > John Bartlett, comp. > Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. > 10439. Appendix
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John Bartlett (1820–1905).  Familiar Quotations, 10th ed.  1919.
 
 
NUMBER:10439
AUTHOR:Appendix
QUOTATION:Hobson’s choice.
ATTRIBUTION:Tobias Hobson (died 1630) was the first man in England that let out hackney horses. When a man came for a horse he was led into the stable, where there was a great choice, but he obliged him to take the horse which stood next to the stable-door; so that every customer was alike well served according to his chance,—from whence it became a proverb when what ought to be your election was forced upon you, to say, “Hobson’s choice.”—Spectator, No. 509.
Where to elect there is but one,
’T is Hobson’s choice,—take that or none.
 

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