Quotes / Martyrdom Culture

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Prayer may cleanse the soul, but pain cleanses the body. Both are necessary for the survival of humanity.
Confessor Ganinimus

Death? What is death? It is the natural state of all things. It is life that is the aberration. It is life that should be feared, for it can go by with our work left undone, it can be wasted away on failure and indolence. Death is to be embraced
Daeyanathos - "The catechisms martial"

Every man is a spark in the darkness, by the time he is noticed he is gone forever. A retinal after-image that fades and is obscured by newer, brighter lights.

Those who believe that they have done all the Emperor asks deserve not rest, but the pyre. The Emperor tasks us unto death and even that moment shall be in His service.
Saint Drusus - "Meditations on the Forgotten Hero"

The Daemon wears many forms. You must know them all. You must tell the Daemon from its disguise and root them from hidden places.
Trust no one. Trust not even yourself.

It is better to die in vain than to live in abomination. The zealous martyr is praised for his valor. The craven and the unready are justly abhorred.
The First Book of Indoctrinations

Every man, even the greatest man, is but a ripple in space-time. In an empire of a million worlds, how much can one man truly matter? Only one being is truly essential to its continued existence, hail his name, the Master of Mankind. Serve the Emperor today, for tomorrow you may be dead.

We are the Imperium; we are a slave to our past. Our future is bound to things that are lost to memory and legend. This is our strength, our curse and our destiny. Ask me not of the future; ask me instead what fate is written in the deeds of the dead.
Yoren Kipraus, Cardinal of Verronus, martyred 245.M36

Death in service to the Emperor is its own reward. Life in failure to Him is its own condemnation.
Uriah Jacobus - "Epistles" (Verse 93)

The wheel of fate spins at the Emperor's right hand. It spins for balance, for symmetry. What was given will be taken, what was loaned shall be paid back. A life saved is only a life spared.

There will be times when a officer will find the limitless hosts of the enemies of man arrayed against him, when all hopes for victory fade away to leave them confronted with the bitter truth of their own mortality. Perhaps it could have been avoided, but perhaps not, know that this galaxy despises man and his works, and in such a dark place and dark time, the only victory possible is over one's own despair. The commander must reach deep into his own soul, and the souls of his men, and find the most terrible and potent weapon in his arsenal - devotion to the Emperor, defiance unto death, face the enemy in their multitude with fire in your heart and a prayer on your lips! Your deaths are your own, and thus do you deny the enemy his victory.
The Tactica Imperialis

Do not waste your tears, I was not born to see the world grow dim. Life is not measured in years, but by the deeds of men.
Epistles Beati, final verse

What is the terror of death? That we die, our work incomplete. What is the joy of life? To die, knowing that our task is done.

Even a man who has nothing can still have faith. Even a man who has nothing can still offer his life.
Curse now the death in vain.
Only in death does duty end.
If a job's worth doing it's worth dying for.
Know your duty!
The martyr's grave is the keystone of the Imperium.
All mortal life is folly that does not feed the spirit.
As the mind to the body so the soul to the spirit, as death to the mortal man so failure to the immortal, such is the price of all ambition.
Death brings its own reward.
No man who died in His service died in vain.
Death is the only answer.
Serve the Emperor today, tomorrow you may be dead.
To cease purpose is to die.
Speed the bolt that brings the end of enemy and friend.
Praise the sun that brings the dawn of our final doom.
The lot of courage is to be sacrificed on the altar of battle.
Do not wait for Death!
Dying for something is greater than living for nothing.
It is the bitter tears that the gods weep that bind us to their hearts.
Call no man happy until he is dead.
No man died in His service that died in vain.
Death is the servant of the righteous.
It is better to die for the Emperor than to live for yourself.
Life is the Emperor's currency, spend it well.
The blood of martyrs is the seed of the Imperium.
The road to purity is drenched in the blood of the martyred.
The wise man learns from the deaths of others.
We are bound by the blood of martyrs.
There will be no victory without your sacrifice.
The graves of the warriors who have given their lives for the Emperor now outnumber the stars themselves.
My armour is contempt.
Mankind stands on the shoulders of the martyred.
The brave man always chooses danger.
Our enemies cannot stop us. They can only test our faith, strength and courage.
Life is a prison, death a release.
The question not is when, but how, will I die!
Your purpose is greatness.
Imperial Thoughts for the Day

It is better to die for the Emperor than live for yourself.
Dreadnought, Dawn of War

Chaplain Ecastus: What is the terror of death?
Brother Gerhart: That we die, our work incomplete. Chaplain Ecastus: What is the joy of life? Brother Gerhart: To die, knowing our task is done.

  • Ballad of the Green Beret by Robin Moore and Staff Sgt. Barry Sadler.
    "Back at home a young wife waits.
    Her Green Beret has met his fate.
    He has died for those oppressed,
    Leaving her this last request:
    'Put silver wings on my son's chest.
    Make him one of America's best.
    He'll be a man they'll test one day.
    Have him win the Green Beret.'"

  • It's A Good Day To Die from Starship Troopers 3.
    "It's a good day to die,
    When you know the reasons why.
    Citizens, we fight for what is right!
    When duty calls, you pay the price.
    For The Federation I will give my life."


"Bushido is realised in the presence of death. In the case of having to choose between life and death you should choose death. There is no other reasoning. Move on with determination."
Tsunetomo Yamamoto, The Hagakure


- The Famous Last Words of Sontaran Commander Skorr, Doctor Who, "The Poison Sky"

"Strange... [cough] I have always dreamed of dying in combat. I am not enjoying it as much as I had hoped."
Strax, Doctor Who, "A Good Man Goes to War" (he gets better)

Gebt euer Leben für das Deutsche Reich!trad. 
Gebt euer Leben für den Führer!trad.: 
—SS Soldiers, Call of Duty

"I live, I die, I live again!"
The War Boys' Battle Cry, Mad Max: Fury Road

"I shall render unconditional obedience and that as a brave soldier I shall at all times be prepared to give my life for this oath."

"Gefallen für Führer, Volk und Reich"trad 
—Obituaries for soldiers in German newspapers of the Third Reich.

"You have to go out, but you don't have to come back."
Unofficial motto of the United States Coast Guard, originating in the regulations for one of its predecessor organizations, the Life-Saving Service, which said that rough seas are not an acceptable reason not to attempt a rescue in a boat: it has to be physically impossible to launch the boat in order for it to be acceptable not to attempt a rescue.