Collection No. 60: The Nabob, by Samuel Foote

Publication Details | Synopsis | Secondary Commentary |Varieties & Dialects | Other

Publication details

Author: Foote, Samuel
Author dates: 1720 - 1777
Title: The Nabob

First played: 1772
First published: 1778, by T.Sherlock, for T.Cadell. 71p.
C18th availability: Available from ECCO (1778):

Modern availability: Available from LION (1996):

Genre: Comedy

Character types: Legal; Jewish

[Return to Top]



[Return to Top]

Secondary commentary

A) Howard, Douglas. ‘Samuel Foote: January, 1721-October 21, 1777.’ Dictionary of Literary Biography, Volume 89: Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Dramatists, Third Series. A Bruccoli Clark Layman Book. Edited by Paula R. Backscheider, University of Rochester. The Gale Group, 1989. LiteratureResourceCenter. 26 May 2008.

"Foote's new play, The Nabob, satirized unscrupulous individuals who had made large fortunes in India and then returned to England, where they sustained their wealth and position by the same corrupt means. One such nabob, Lord Robert Clive, had in fact been investigated by Parliament, and was thus a celebrated case. The plot of the play in some sense reverses the situation of The Maid of Bath, as young Sophy Oldham tries to save her family from debt by offering to marry their creditor, Sir Matthew Mite, a nabob just returned from India. A generous uncle finally saves the day, and the sentimental plot concludes with Sophy's marriage to her cousin."

[Return to Top]

Varieties & Dialects

Overview of varieties / dialects

An "oriental" legal term is read from a document. Jewish speakers are linguistically stereotyped (Moses Mendoza): As to dat matter, I vas not enquire dat; I believe not.

Varieties / dialects


[Return to Top]

Narrative comments on varieties and dialects

Legal/Indian "Oriental" "jargon"

Thomas. "Or if it should be more agreeable to the parties, Sir Matthew will settle upon Sir John and his Lady, for their joint lives, a jagghire."
Sir John. A jagghire?

Thomas. The term is Indian, and means an annual income.

[Return to Top]

Other points of interest


[Return to Top]

©2008 Arden Hegele