Well, I have about an hour to post and not enough effort to write out a proper article. I had originally intended to write about the best sources of information for medieval arms, armor, and swordplay. A couple of my dear readers have asked me about this topic, and so I wished to create a page on it. That will have to wait until tomorrow. Today, having been motivated by finishing Edward G. Longacre’s biography of General Wade Hampton III, I would like to post some famous last words. I have always been fascinated by what people say in their dying moments and often pondered what I should say if I was in full possession of my faculties. Let me begin with Hampton’s last words and then I shall continue with some others which I have found striking.
“God bless all my people, black and white.” – General Wade Hampton III
” ‘Tis well.” – George Washington
“Strike the tent.” – General Robert E. Lee
“What a beautiful sight.” – St. Dominic Savio
“I see black light.” – Victor Hugo
After a nurse told Henrik Ibsen that he seemed to be doing well that day, he responded by saying “On the contrary” and died.
“Let us cross over the river, and rest under the shade of the trees.” – General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson
“Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.” – Our Lord Jesus Christ
“Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” – St. Stephen
“Youth, I forgive thee. Take off his chains, give him 100 shillings and let him go.” – King Richard the Lionheart, speaking first to the crossbowmen who had mortally wounded him and then to his captors.
“Stand before me, and hew me a mighty stoke on the head, for it is not fitting that highborn lords should die like thieves. Be firm, poor man, for I have prayed to God for you that he may have mercy upon you.” – St. Magnus of Orkney to his executioner.
“Jesus. Mary.” – St. Padre Pio
“Jesus.” – St. Francis de Sales
“I have loved justice and hated iniquity: therefore, I die in exile.” – Pope Gregory VII
“Ah, that tastes nice. Thank you.” – Johannes Brahms
“I am still alive!” – Caligula
“I have tried so hard to do the right.” – Grover Clevland
“Monks! Monks! Monks!” – King Henry VIII
“Please put out the light.” – Theodore Roosevelt before dying in his sleep.
“They couldn’t hit an elephant at that distance.” – General John Sedgwick
“Why weep you? Did you think I should live for ever? I thought dying had been harder.” – King Louis XIV
“Dying is easy. Comedy is hard.” – George Bernard Shaw
“Thomas Jefferson still survives.” – John Adams. Thomas Jefferson had actually died earlier on that same day, July 4, 1826.
“Praised be God! Blessed be God! May the holy will of God be done!” – St. Joseph of Cupertino
“I regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.” Nathan Hale
“See in what peace a Christian can die.” – Joseph Addison
“I should never have switched from Scotch to Martinis.” – Humphrey Bogart
Hope that you found these quotes as interesting as I do!