Published: 1960
Author: Theodor Geisel
Illustrator: Theodor Geisel
Characters: Sam I Am
Secondary Characters: cat, dog, fox, mouse, engineer, passengers, goat, sailor
Setting: house, box, car, tree, train, dark, rain, and boat

Green Eggs and Ham is a book by Dr. Seuss. It was first published in 1960 and as of 2001 was the fourth-best-selling English language children's book of all time. Sam-I-Am wants Guy-Am-I to taste some green eggs and ham. He refuses many, many times, until finally, trapped with no other alternative, he tries a bite, and realizes he does, in fact, like the aforementioned dish.


Sam-I-Am pesters his friend Guy-Am-I (who was unnamed in the original book) to eat a dish of green eggs and ham. However, Guy-Am-I tells him he doesn’t like the food while saying, "I do not like green eggs and ham! I do not like them Sam-I-Am!" He continues to repeat similar responses all throughout the story as Sam persistently follows him. While Guy-Am-I is followed by Sam-I-am, Sam-I-Am continues to ask Guy-Am-I if he would eat that food in or on various different environments and locations (house, box, car, tree, train, dark, rain, and boat) and with various animals (mouse, fox and goat), but Guy-Am-I still refuses, regardless to the circumstances by saying, "I do not like them here (this place) or there (the other place). I do not like them anywhere." Finally, in exasperation, Guy vainly samples the dish just to get Sam to "let him be". When he finds that he actually likes the dish after-all, he announces that he would eat them in all of the places and with all of the animals mentioned. The story ends with Guy (who has eaten the entire dish) and Sam becoming friends, with Guy happily saying, “I do so like green eggs and ham. Thank you. Thank you, Sam-I-Am.”


  • This book features a self-centered fellow and a persistent, happy-go-lucky counterpart to him as a theme which would be continued in Fox in Socks, and It might be Knox.
  • The origin of Green Eggs and Ham stems from a bet Seuss had with his publisher, Bennett Cerf. Seuss’s previous book The Cat in the Hat, used only 223 words based off a list of 348 required words for beginner readers to learn. Cerf bet Seuss that he couldn’t write a book with on 50 words from the aforementioned list.
  • This book was made into an animated TV special in 1973 in the TV film Dr. Seuss on the Loose with Paul Winchell as both Sam-I-Am and Guy-Am-I.
  • In the book, Sam and Guy go on a long train voyage. Eventually, the train runs off a poorly designed railroad and collides with a passenger ship. All personnel on both vehicles survive, and take part in Guy's culinary celebration. The 1973 cartoon is more implicitly violent, as the train, whose engineer appears to be asleep at the throttle, charges down the ship's smokestack, causing both vehicles to sink to the bottom. While Guy then wades to shore, noone else emerges from either vehicle, so it might be presumed that all hands in both crews were drowned.
  • This book was featured in a film titled I Am Sam (2001), directed by Jessie Nelson, and starred by Sean Penn, Michelle Pfieffer, and Dakota Fanning. The character Sam loves reading this book.
  • Four Cartoon Network shows, Johnny Bravo, Dexter's Laboratory, Cow and Chicken and Codename: Kids Next Door, have references to Green Eggs and Ham references.
  • In Horton Hears a Who, The McDodd family is shown eating green eggs and ham for breakfast.
  • Oceanhouse Media publishs the book to be uses as an app on iPhones, iPod Touch, iPad, and Android Apps.
  • The fox might be fox in socks.
  • The book now has a Netflix series. Learn more here.


Beginner Book Video

This Book was also used in the Random House Home Video Series which is entitled "Dr. Seuss Beginner Book Video", featuring "Ten Apples Up on Top!" and "The Tooth Book".

First Appearances

Goofs, Errors, and Corrections

In the train scene it is shown the train has multiple coaches and a coal tender and two other passengers were missing.


  • In a 2008 cartoon called "Martha Speaks", in the episode "Ice Scream" the girl read a book called "Blue Mangoes", which is very similar to Green Eggs and Ham and is rhymed.
  • The SpongeBob SquarePants episode "Just One Bite" parodies the plot of this book, although the ending is different.
  • The episode of VeggieTales feature stories that parody Dr. Seuss: "The Story of Flibber-O-Loo" from "Are You My Neighbor?" and the title story of the episode, "A Snoodle's Tale". At the end of the latter, Larry says that something about the story makes him want to eat green ham...and eggs.
  • The Johnny Bravo episode "Cookie Crisis" parodies this book.


You can watch Green Eggs and Ham here: Read book in pdf.


Video Book Gallery

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.