By Ernie J. Zelinski
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(A Comprehensive Collection of Famous Last Words by the Famous and Not-so-Famous Selections: These selections of last words are of persons who actually lived or are for all intents and purpose are believed to have actually lived. Selections by Ernie J. Zelinski, Author of How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free) 

Famous Last Words Image 

Note: Last Words are a person's final words spoken before death. Last Words however, may also refer to:

  • Last Words, an Australian punk band
  • Last Words, a memoir by George Carlin
  • Last Words, a short film made in 1968 which was directed by Werner Herzog
  • Last Words, a song by The Real Tuesday Weld

Interestingly, it is reported that around 17 percent of individuals have given thought to what their last words would be if they knew they were dying. But sadly, it is estimated that 94 percent of modern last words come from suicide notes.

Hopefully you are more interested in things such as Retiring Happy, Top-10 reasons to retire early and collecting Social Security for a long time rather than writing your own last words. Here are some of the famous last words by famous people and not-so-famous people:

Karl Marx's Famous Last Words

Get out of here and leave me alone. Last words are for fools who haven't said enough already.
— Karl Marx

Jerry Kosinski's Famous Last Words

I am going to put myself to sleep now for a bit longer than usual. Call the time Eternity. (quoted in Newsweek, May 13, 1991).
— Jerzy Kosinski, American Author

Teresa of Avila's Famous Last Words

The hour I have long wished for is now come.
— Teresa of Avila

Oscar Wilde's Famous Last Words

Either that wallpaper goes, or I do.
— Oscar Wilde (1856 - 1900) Anglo-Irish playwright, novelist
Attributed last words, as he lay dying in a drab Paris hotel room.

Humphrey Bogart's Famous Last Words

I should never have switched from Scotch to Martinis.
— Humphrey Bogart

Nostradamus's Famous Last Words

Tomorrow, I shall no longer be here
— Nostradamus

George Appel's Not-So-Famous Last Words

You're about to see a baked apple.
— George Appel, who was executed in an electric chair

David Stoker's Not-So-Famous Last Words

Let's rock and roll.
— David Stoker, who was executed for the murder of a convenience store clerk

Lenny Bruce's Famous Last Words

I'll be comfortable on the couch.
— Lenny Bruce (quoted in The Essential Lenny Bruce, J. Cohen)

George Eastman's Famous Last Words

My work is done, why wait?
— George Eastman, founder of Kodak (in suicide note)

Elizabeth I's Famous Last Words

All my possessions for a moment of time.
— Elizabeth I (1533 - 1603) English ruler
Alleged last words.

W. Somerset Maugham's Famous Last Words

Dying is a very dull, dreary affair. My advice to you is to have nothing whatever to do with it.
W. Somerset Maugham


Lope de Vega 's Famous Last Words

All right, then, I'll say it: Dante makes me sick.
— Lope de Vega, Spanish playwright (upon being reassured on his deathbed that his end was near)

Luthar Burbank's Famous Last Words

I don't feel good.
— Luther Burbank, American horticulturist (who developed countless new varieties of fruits, vegetables, and flowers, including the Burbank potato)

Pancho Villa's Famous Last Words

Don't let it end like this. Tell them I said something.
— Pancho Villa, Mexican revolutionary leader

William Hazlitt's Famous Last Words

Well, I've had a happy life.
— William Hazlitt (1778 - 1830) English writer, essayist
Last words, quoted in W. C. Hazlitt, Memoirs of William Hazlitt

Gertrude Stein's Famous Last Words

What is the answer? [Silence] In that case, what is the question?

— Gertrude Stein (1874 - 1946) US author

Logan Pearsall Smith's Famous Last Words

Thank heaven, the sun has gone in, and I don't have to go out and enjoy it.
— Logan Pearsall Smith (1865 - 1946) US-English essayist, editor, anthologist

Stonewall Jackson's Famous Last Words

Let us cross over the river and rest in the shade.
— Stonewall Jackson (1824 - 1863) US confederate army general (His famous last words before being shot mistakenly by his own men 10 May 1863.)

John Quincy Adam's Famous Last Words

This is the last of Earth! I am content.
— John Quincy Adams

Voltaire's Famous Last Words

This is no time for making new enemies.
— Voltaire (1694-1778 — on being asked on his deathbed to renounce the Devil)

Lytton Strachey's Famous Last Words

If this is dying, then I don't think much of it.
— Lytton Strachey (1880-1932)

John Sedgwick's Famous Last Words

They couldn't hit an elephant at this distance.
— John Sedgwick (immediately prior to being killed by enemy fire at the battle of Spotsylvania in the American Civil War, May 1864)

Emily Dickinson's Famous Last Words

Let us go in; the fog is rising.
— Emily Dickinson (1830 - 1886) US poet
Attributed last words; in "A Certain World," " Words, Last," by W. H. Auden, 1970

W.C. Field's Famous Last Words

I have spent a lot of time searching through the Bible for loopholes.

— W. C. Fields (1880 - 1946) US actor, comedian

Famous Words of The Author of The World's Best

Retirement Book While He Is Alive 

Forget how old you are — this get's more important the older you get!
— from the international bestseller How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free: Retirement Wisdom That You Won't Get from Your Financial Advisor

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H. L. Mencken's Famous Last Words

If after I depart this vale, you ever remember me, and have thought to please my ghost, forgive some sinner and wink your eye at some homely girl.
— H. L. Mencken (1880 - 1956) US editor, satirist

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's Last Words

Light, light, the world needs more light.
— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Last Words Image

Robert Louis Stevenson's Last Words

I am going to that country which I have all my life wished to see.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

Winston Churhill's Famous Last Words

I am bored with it all.
— Winston Churchill (1874 - 1965) English statesman, author

Heinrich Heine's Famous Last Words

God will forgive me, it is his trade.
— Heinrich Heine


Francois Rabelais's Famous Last Words

I am going to seek a great purpose, draw the curtain, the farce is played.
— Francois Rabelais (1494 - 1553) French author

Famous Words of The Author of The World's Second Best Retirement Book While He Is Alive

Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.
— from The Joy of Not Working: A Book for the Retired, Unemployed, and Overworked


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Ludwig van Beethoven's Last Words

I shall hear in heaven.
— Ludwig van Beethoven

Thomas Edison's Famous Last Words

It is very beautiful over there.
— Thomsas Edison

Aldous Huxley's Famous Last Words

Let us be kinder to one another.
— Aldous Huxley

William Blake's Famous Last Words

I am going to that country which I have all my life wished to see.
— William Blake

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If you want avoid saying your last words for some time and instead want to learn about how to retire happy, wild, and free including . . .

  • 9 Dumbest Retirement Moves

  • Why Retiring Too Late Means You Don't Get Another Chance

  • 10 Youthful Activities Never Too Late to Pursue Unless You Are Dead

  • How to Create a "Get-a-Life Tree" So That You Don't Die of Retirement Boredom

  • The Magical Retirement Plan for High Achievers

  • 17 Secrets to a Happy Retirement

You must give yourself the most important retirement gift that anyone can receive:


  • Over 425,000 Copies Sold Worldwide 
  • Published in 9 Foreign Languages 

Purchase How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free Today: Logo Purchase on 


by Ernie J. Zelinski — All Rights Reserved
Author of The World's Best Book on Retirement

 I will do today
what others won't,
so I will have
tomorrow what
others don't.
— John Addison
No organization — government or
otherwise — can take great care of you in retirement.     Organizations aren't capable of this — only  you are!
— from Life's Secret Handbook

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How to Retire Happy on


How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free on

Surveys of seniors overwhelmingly      suggest that higher incomes don't drive satisfaction in   retirement. That said, there is a minimum
of income required to enjoy retirement.
— Dan Richards
I'm regularly asked     what my [retirement]  plan is, and I    deliberately don't have much of a plan. I've had lots of plans in my life and it might be nice to have a period      that is less planned.
— Malcolm Hamilton, Expert on Pensions 
& Retirement Planning

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