Solomon Northup: I did as instructed. If there's something wrong, it's wrong with the instructions! Tibeats: You black bastard. You... goddamn... black bastard. Strip your clothes. [shoving Solomon] Tibeats: Strip. Solomon Northup: I will
Solomon Northup: We need a sympathetic ear. If we have an opportunity to explain our situation... Clemens: Who in your estimation is that sympathetic ear? Solomon Northup: The two men I journeyed with. I'm certain they're making inquires at this very moment. Clemens: I would be just as certain the
Radburn: [brings food in to Solomon; a shriveled piece of meat and some water. Just barely enough to sustain Solomon. Radburn also has a shirt] That old thing of yours is just rags and tatters. Need something proper to wear. Go'won. Put it on. [Solomon reluctantly does so] Radburn: There. Tha's fi
Patroller: [in a vain attempt to escape, Solomon runs into some patrollers who are fixing to hang a trio of slaves] Boy, where are you going? Solomon Northup: To the store, Sir, to Bartholomew's. I was sent there by Mistress Epps. Patroller: [the patroller reaches out for Solomon's free pass aroun
Edwin Epps: [Having awakened Solomon in the middle of the night, Epps coaxes him outside, puts his arm around him as if consoling a friend, and guides him into the woods] Well, boy. I understand I've got a larned nigger that writes letters and tries to get white fellows to mail 'em. Well, Armsby t
Tibeats: [singing] Nigger run, nigger flew/Nigger tore his shirt in two/Run, run, the pattyroller git you/Run nigger run, well ya better get away. That's right, like you mean it. Nigger run, run so fast/Stove his head in a hornet's nest/Run, run, the pattyroller git you/Run nigger, run, well ya be
Chapin: [Tibeats and a gang are trying to lynch Solomon] Gentlemen... Whoever moves that nigger another foot from where he stands is a dead man. I am overseer of this plantation seven years, and in the absence of William Ford, my duty is to protect his interests. Ford holds a mortgage on Platt of
Patsey: I went to Massa Shaw's plantation! Edwin Epps: Ya admit it. Patsey: Freely. And you know why? [she produces a piece of soap from the pocket of her dress] Patsey: I got this from Mistress Shaw. Mistress Epps won't even grant me no soap ta clean with. Stink so much I make myself gag. Five hu
Mistress Shaw: In his own time, the Good Lord will manage them all. The curse of the pharoahs was a poor example of what waits for the plantation class.
Solomon Northup: [Solomon awakens Armsby in the middle of the night. He offers him a handful of coins] The proceeds of my fiddling performances. A few picayunes, but all I have in the world. I promise them to you if you will do me the favor I require. But I beg you not to expose me if you cannot g
Clemens: If you want to survive, do and say as little as possible. Tell no one who you really are and tell no one that you can read and write. Unless you want to be a dead nigger.
Freeman: You see how fit the boy is. Like ripe fruit. He will grow into a fine beast. [makes Randall run and jump in place] Freeman: Six hundred, and that's fair and fina
Solomon Northup: [Upon meeting his family again after 12 years] I apologize for my appearance. But I have had a difficult time these past several years.
Solomon Northup: I don't want to survive. I want to live.
Burch: Well, my boy, how yah feel now? Solomon Northup: I am Solomon Northup. I am a free man; a resident of Saratoga, New York. The residence also of my wife and children who are equally free. I have papers. You have no right whatsoever to detain me... Burch: Yah not any... Solomon Northup: And I
Ford: I believe Tibeats is skulkin' about the premises somewhere. He wants you dead, and he will attempt to have you so. It's no longer safe for you here. And I don't believe you will remain passive if Tibeats attacks. I have transferred my debt to Edwin Epps. He will take charge of you. Solomon N
Hamilton: I'm afraid that Brown and I haven't brought you much luck. But rough waters bring smooth sailing. Eventually they do. Solomon Northup: So... so sorry... Hamilton: Shhh. We won't hear it. We won't. Brown: Let him sleep. Hamilton: Hmm. A good night's sleep. And tomorrow... tomorrow you wil
Solomon Northup: [Epps has just whipped Patsey within an inch of her life] Thou devil! Sooner or later, somewhere in the course of eternal justice thou shalt answer for this sin! Edwin Epps: No sin! There is no sin! A man does how he pleases with his property. At the moment, Platt, I am of great p
Tibeats: I thought I told yah ta commence ta puttin' on clapboards this morn'.
Edwin Epps: "And that servant which knew his Lord's will... which knew his Lord's will and prepared not himself... prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes..." D'ye hear that? "Stripes." That nigger that don't take care, that don't obey his lord -
Edwin Epps: [bursting into the slaves' quarters in the middle of the night] Get up! Get up, we dance tonight! We will not waste the evenin' with yer laziness. Get up.
Burch: Yah a slave. Yah a Georgia slave! [savagely beats Solomon until his paddle breaks. He switches to a whip and continues] Burch: Are yah a slave? Solomon Northup:
Ford: What is the price for the ones Platt and Eliza? Freeman: A thousand for Platt; he is a nigger of talent. Seven hundred for Eliza. My fairest price. Ford: You will accept a note? Freeman: Always from you, Mr. Fo
Robert: I say we fight. Solomon Northup: The crew is fairly small. If it were well planned, I believe they could be strong armed. Clemens: Three can't stand against a whole crew. The rest here are niggers, born and bred slaves. Niggers ain't got the stomach for a fight, not a damn one. Robert: All
Edwin Epps: A plague! It's damn Biblical. Two season God done sent a plague to smite me. I am near ruination. Why, Treach? What I done that God hate me so? Do I not preach His word? Treach: The whole Bayou sufferin'. Edwin Epps: I don't care nothin' fer the damn Bayou. I'm sufferin'. [looks at the
Edwin Epps: [about Patsey] Damned Queen. Born and bred to the field. A nigger among niggers, and God give 'er to me. A lesson in the rewards of righteous livin'. All be observant ta that. All!
[first lines] Overseer: Alright now, y'all fresh niggers. Y'all gonna be in the cuttin' gang
Tibeats: My name is John Tibeats, William Ford's chief carpenter. You will refer to me as Master. Mister Chapin is the overseer on this plantation. He is responsible for all of Ford's property. You too will refer to him as Master. This plantation covers many hundreds of acres, and you will travers
Mistress Ford: [to Eliza] Something to eat and some rest; your children will soon enough be forgotten.
Freeman: Put the least thought in your head. C'mon, now. Think of somethin'.