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13 x 7 = 28

13 x 7 = 28 - the classic Abbott and Costello routine, where Lou Costello tries to prove that 13 x 7 Is 28

13 x 7 = 28 – the classic Abbott and Costello routine, where Lou Costello tries to prove that 13 x 7 Is 28

13 x 7 = 28 is a very funny, popular Abbott and Costello routine. They did it on their radio show, television show, and movies. The routine below is taken from The Little Giant.

Benny Miller (Lou Costello): Mr Chairman, twenty-eight vacuums a week, that’s a lot of vacuums to sell, and you only have seven salesmen.
T.S. Chandler (Bud Abbott): Certainly.
Costello: That means they gotta sell thirteen vacuums a piece.
Abbott: You’re right. Thirteen vacuum cleaners a piece.
Costello: Yes, sir.
Abbott: What are you talking about? 7 times 13 is not 28.
Costello: Yes it is.
Abbott: 7 times 4 is 28.
Costello: Mr Chairman, 7 times 13 is 28.
Abbott: 7 times 4 is 28. Did you ever go to school, stupid?
Costello: Yes sir, and I came out the same way.
Abbott: Come here a minute. You claim that 7 goes into 28, 13 times.
Costello: That’s right.
Abbott: Go ahead. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Go ahead. Go ahead. Go ahead.
Costello: Alright.
Abbott: There’s the board. Well, go ahead.
Costello: Ok, Mr. Chairman, I’m going to prove it.
Abbott: Well, go ahead.


Costello: Now, you’ve got seven salesmen.
Abbott: That’s right.
Costello: Ok, now, there’s the 7.
Abbott: Where is it?
Costello: Right there!
Abbott: Alright.
Costello: Now, you’ve got twenty-eight vacuum cleaners a week you’ve got to sell.
Abbott: That’s right.
Costello: Then you divide. Now, there’s your 28 vacuum cleaners.
Abbott: Now –wait, you claim that 7 goes into 28 thirteen times?
Costello: That’s right.
Abbott Show me.
Costello Seven into two –seven won’t go into two-
Abbott: Certainly not!
Costello So I’ve got to take the two from there and put it down there. Right over here.
Abbott: Put it down there?
Costello: Yeah, I am going to use it after work! That’s a cute little two.
Abbott: Yeah, right.
Costello: Now, seven into eight–
Abbott: Once.
Costello: Once. Now, I’m going to carry the seven from here and put it under the eight. Seven from eight?
Abbott: One.
Costello: One. Now, a minute ago, I didn’t use that little two.
Abbott: What are you going to do?
Costello: I’m going to use that two now! And I take it from there and I got to put it right there.
Abbott: Aright.
Costello: Now, seven into twenty-one
Abbott: Three times.
Costello: That’s correct! Seven into twenty-eight is thirteen!


I am going to divide
7 ) 28 ( 13

Abbott: Oh, no no no no no. Nothing of the kind. What kind of figures are these? Just a minute.
Costello: Check they came out right.
Abbott: We’ll multiply this. [Laughing] Okay, go ahead!
Costello: Multiply?
Abbott: Put down thirteen.

Multiply. Put down 13 and 7.

Costello: Okay. Thirteen.
Abbott: That’s right. That’s seven salesmen. Put that down.
Costello: Seven salesmen.
Abbott: Now, you claim that 7 times 13 amounts to what?
Costello: Twenty-eight.
Abbott: Ho ho, prove that.
Costello: Seven times three–
Abbott: Yeah, twenty-one.
Costello: Seven times one
Abbott: Seven.
Costello: Seven and one?
Abbott: Eight.
Costello: And a two!
Abbott: Wait–no! Wait a minute! How do you figure, boy?
Costello: I figure good!
Abbott: No, no you can’t do that.
Costello: That’s right.


Abbott: No, no, nothing of the kind! We will add them up this time.
Costello: Add them?
Abbott: Put down thirteen, uh, seven times. Okay.
Put down 13 seven times. We will add these up.”
13, 13, 13, 13, 13, 13, 13.

Costello: One. Two.
Abbott: Two.
Costello: Three.
Abbott: Three. Four.
Costello: Four.
Abbott: Five.
Costello: Five.
Abbott: Six.
Costello: Six.
Abbott: Seven.
Costello: Seven.
Abbott: Now, wait a minute. You claim that all of that added up amounts to what?
Costello: Twenty-eight.
Abbott: If it does, you’ve got a job.
Costello: Thank you! three–
Abbott: Now, wait a minute. Wait a minute. Wait a minute.
Abbott: 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21- now 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28. 13 + 13 + 13 +13 +13 +13 +13 = 28.
Costello: 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28.
Abbott: What? [defeated] You’re hired!

1 thought on “13 x 7 = 28”

  1. I saw them do the “who’s on first” routine in person at the “steel pier” on the boardwalk in Atlantic City

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