Skip to main content

Famous last words from the most badass men of history

You should be familiar with these quotes

George Washington
Image used with permission by copyright holder

It’s not hard to judge a man based on the last words he utters before slipping from life into that unknown void called death.

Of course, it’s also not hard to judge a man based on his shoes or the way he smacks his lips when eating a sandwich. Or you could judge him based on a series of triple lutzes and double axles, provided he is, in fact, a professional figure skater and partaking in a competition.

Let’s focus on those last words and see if we can’t actually get a sense of character from a few final quotes. There are countless compilations of “famous last words” out there in the world, but we’re not concerned with wit, irony, or even profundity. Not today, anyway. No, today we’re here to talk about some of the manliest things a man ever said right before he kicked off.

Sitting Bull
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Memorable famous last words

“Do with me what you like, I am not going! Come on, come on! Take action! Let’s go!” – Sitting Bull

Sitting Bull died after he decided against being taken into custody by the Indian Affairs police, and he went out in a blaze of gunfire and glory. He was 59 years young and incredibly angry.

Nathan Hale
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.” – Nathan Hale

Patriot Nathan Hale spoke these words just before being hung by British soldiers on September 22, 1776. He was 21.

Harry "Breaker" Morant
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“Shoot straight, you bastards!” – Harry “Breaker” Morant

Harry “Breaker” Morant commanded his own firing squad to kill him properly. Morant had (likely) summarily and illegally executed several Boer prisoners of war in his charge as a British military officer in the Second Anglo-Boer War, so his own death sentence wasn’t exactly unfair.

George Washington
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“Tis well. I die hard, but I am not afraid to go.” – George Washington

The first president, George Washington’s last words showed us how it’s done. Now, for the record, his last words might also have just been “Tis well,” but let’s … let’s go with the whole thing. Yeah.

Edward Ahrens
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“The bastards tried to come over me last night. I guess they didn’t know I was a Marine.” – Edward Ahrens, USMC

Private First Class Edward Ahrens, USMC, whispered this as he succumbed to wounds suffered during his single-handed prevention of a breach in American lines on Guadalcanal during World War II. Beside him lay the bodies of multiple enemy soldiers. Ahrens was holding a sword.

Jack Daniel
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“One last drink, please.” – Jack Daniel

Jack Daniel. No further annotation required.

Doc Holliday
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“This is funny.” – Doc Holliday

Notorious gunslinger and gambler Doc Holliday allegedly spoke these words as he died in a Colorado hospital, probably because he always thought he’d go down in a saloon fight.

Thomas Hobbes
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“I am about to take my last voyage, a great leap in the dark.” – Thomas Hobbes

British philosopher Thomas Hobbes reportedly espoused these brave words as he lay in bed at the ripe old age of 91, dying from what some historians believe was a paralytic stroke.

Dienekes 
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“We shall have our fight in the shade.” – Dienekes

As the legend goes, famed Spartan warrior Dienekes uttered this badass line (or some version of it) after being informed that the advancing Persian army was equipped with so many arrows that their fire would block the sun.

Alexander the Great
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“To the strongest.” – Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great allegedly whipped out this manly quip after his men asked him who would take over the empire in his stead.

Giles Corey
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“More weight.” – Giles Corey

Giles Corey was accused of witchcraft during the Salem Witch Trials of 1692. After refusing to show up in court to face the charges, the 80-year-old was sentenced to be crushed to death by rock slabs, a punishment known as “pressing.” Every time a new stone was added to his chest, he was asked to confess, but would only answer, “more weight.”

Captain James Lawrence
Image used with permission by copyright holder

“Don’t give up the ship. Fight her till she sinks.” – Captain James Lawrence

Captain James Lawrence gave this courageous command as his ship, the USS Chesapeake, was overcome by the Royal Navy’s HMS Shannon in the War of 1812.

Star Wars Darth Vader stormtroopers
Lucasfilm

Famous fictional last words

We’ve just run through some of the most iconic last words from men throughout history, and they were memorable, but sometimes you just need the help of a Hollywood screenwriter to craft a truly memorable and badass exit line before the character shuffles off this mortal coil. With that in mind, here are some of the most memorable last words from fictional characters.

  • “You were right, you were right about me. Tell your sister … you were right.” Darth Vader (Return of the Jedi – 1983) to Luke Skywalker as he lay dying on the Death Star.
  • “You cannot win Darth. If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.” – Obi Wan Kenobi (Star Wars – 1977) to Darth Vader during their lightsaber duel
  • “I have been and always shall be your friend … Live long and prosper.” Spock (Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan – 1982) to Kirk on the Enterprise. Yes, we know Spock came back to life in Star Trek III, but this line is too iconic not to include.
  • “Clever girl …” Robert Muldoon (Jurassic Park – 1993) uttered right before he became velociraptor chow.

Editors' Recommendations

Nate Swanner
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Nate is General Manager for all not-Digital-Trends properties at DTMG, including The Manual, Digital Trends en Espanol…
6 of the Most Important Black Inventors in U.S. History
Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett and President Joe Biden

Who was the most famous Black inventor? What are some famous Black inventions? What was the first Black invention? You may be surprised by the answers to these and other questions you may have about these six important Black inventors in U.S. history. 
What Are Some Famous Black Inventions?
From 1870 to 1940, Black inventors filed and secured around 50,000 U.S. patents, according to data from the Brookings Institution. Since then, Black inventors have continued to develop new products. From indulgent snacks to traffic control, and from home security to life-saving medicine, there’s so much for us to uncover and examine. 

You might already know the story of Dr. George Washington Carver and his tasty peanut-based inventions, but the stories of Black inventors don’t end there. Here are some more remarkable examples from history of Black excellence and Black innovation. 

Read more
10 Best Candles for Men 2022: From Pine-Scented to Pirate-Inspired
best scented candles for men 2020

Fellas, it’s time to face reality: Candles are freaking amazing. Like nothing else out there, these waxy vessels can make your home smell phenomenal while transporting you to dreamy locations all over the world. And though candles may conjure up images of your grandma’s house (complete with crocheted coasters, kitten needle points, and a too-sweet aroma of vanilla), they’re no longer kitschy afterthoughts, but full-on statement essentials that can set the tone for an entire space. You can get the cabin woods smell inside your apartment year long or grab one to gift for the holiday season.

It’s time to drop the notion that candles aren’t for guys and get into it! Don’t know where to start? Begin your votive journey with a few of our favorite scented candles for men below.
Square Trade Goods Balsam Fig & Sage Scent

Read more
There’s a free Super Bowl Halftime Show live stream (and it’s legal)
super bowl tickets lvii

Usher fans will be super excited to know that we’ve made it. Today is finally the day of the Super Bowl Halftime Show plus that little sports game known as the Super Bowl. If you’re confident that one of the best Super Bowl halftime shows is coming up fast, you won’t want to miss out on a second. Fortunately, there are many ways to watch a free Super Bowl Halftime Show live stream and they’re all legal options. That’s thanks to the game and the halftime show being aired on CBS which many streaming services offer. It’s the perfect chance to catch other iconic moments like the best Super Bowl commercials too. Here’s what you need to know about how to watch the Super Bowl Halftime show live stream entirely for free.
Watch the free Super Bowl Halftime Show live stream on Fubo

Fubo is a popular streaming option for sports fans thanks to being one of the best ways to watch live sports online. Because of its channel roster and the fact that the Super Bowl Halftime show is on the same station as the main event, you can easily catch CBS on Fubo. Even better, the cord cutter’s dream has a great Fubo free trial. It lasts seven days and gives you unrestricted access to whichever Fubo plan you sign up for. The only catch is you need to hand over your credit card details so it’s a smart move to make sure you cancel ahead of the seven-day expiry date so you don’t end up paying anything.

Read more