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Richard III to Zarnoff
Richard III, King of England
"A horse!  A horse!  My kingdom for a horse."

Play:  Richard III by William Shakespeare, 1593?

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Ah, Durendal, fair, hallowed and devote,
What store of relics lie in thy hilt of gold!
St. Peter's tooth, St. Basil's blood, it holds,
Hair of my lord St. Denis, there enclosed,
Likewise a piece of Blessed Mary's robe;
To Paynim hands 'twere sin to let you go;
You should be served by Christian men alone,
Ne'er may you fall to any coward soul!
Many wide lands I conquered by your strokes
For Charles to keep whose beard is white as snow,
Whereby right rich and mighty is his throne.
Mea culpa; Thy mercy, Lord, I beg
For all the sins, both the great and the less,
That e'er I did since first I drew my breath
Unto this day when I'm struck down by death.

Epic Poem:  Song of Roland, Turold?, 12th century

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Here's to my love!  O true apothecary!
Thy drugs are quick.  Thus with a kiss I die.

Play:  Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare, 1591?

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Rubashov, N. S.

Novel:   Darkness at Noon, Arthur Koestler, 1941

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"The devil has told you!  The devil has told you!"

Fairy Tale:  "Rumplestiltskin," collected by the Brothers Grimm, 1812-1815

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"Ah! I have kissed your mouth, Iokanaan, I have kissed your mouth.  Your lips had a bitter taste.  Was it the taste of blood? . . .  Perhaps it was the taste of love.  They say that love has a bitter taste. . . .  But what does it matter?  What does it matter?  I have kissed your mouth."

Play:  Salome, Oscar Wilde, 1896

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Samsa, Gregor
"And now what?"

Short Story: "The Metamorphosis," Franz Kafka, 1915

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Stark, Willie (actor - Broderick Crawford) 
"Could have been whole world, Willie Stark, whole world, Willie Stark.  Why did he do it to me, Willie Stark?  Why?"

Novel:  All the King's Men, 1947 
Movie:  All the King's Men, 1949

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Sullivan, Rocky (actor - James Cagney)
"Oh, I don't wanna die!  Oh, please.  I don't wanna die!  Oh, please.  Don't let me burn.  Oh, please.  Let go of me.  Please."

Movie:  Angels with Dirty Faces, 1938

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Traherne, Judy (actress - Bette Davis)
"Is that you, Martha? . . .  I don't want to be disturbed."

Movie:  Dark Victory, 1939

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Usher, Roderick
"We have put her in the tomb!  Said I not that my senses were acute?  I now tell you that I heard her first feeble movements in the hollow coffin.  I heard them--many, many days ago--yet I dared not--I dared not speak!  And now--to-night--Ethelred--ha! ha!--the breaking of the hermit's door, and the death-cry of the dragon, and the clangor of the shield--say, rather, the rending of her coffin, and the grating of the iron hinges of her prison, and her struggles with the coppered archway of the vault!  Oh! whither shall I fly?  Will she not be here anon?  Is she not hurrying to upbraid me for my haste?  Have I not heard her footstep on the stair? Do I not distinguish that heavy and horrible beating of her heart?  Madman!  Madman!  I tell you that she no stands without the door!"

Short Story:  "The Fall of the House of Usher,"  Edgar Allan Poe, 

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Valjean, Jean
"You will weep for me a little, will you not?  Not too much.  I do not wish you to have any deep grief. . . .  My children, you will not forget that I am a poor man, you will have me buried in the most convenient piece of ground under a stone to mark the spot. That is my wish.  No name on the stone. . . .  So I am going away, my children.  Love each other dearly always.  There is scarcely anything else in the world but that: to love one another. . . .  Think of me a little.  You are blessed creatures.  I do not know what is the matter with me, I see a light.  come nearer.  I die happy.  Let me put my hands upon your beloved heads."

Novel: Les Miserables by Victor Hugo, 1862

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Wicked Witch of the West (actress - Margaret Hamilton)
Movie:  "You cursed brat. Look what you've done. I'm melting! Melting! Oh, what a world! What a world! Who would have thought a good little girl like you could destroy my beautiful wickedness."
Children's Book:  "See what you've done!  In a minute I shall melt away. . . .  Didn't you know water would be the end of me? . . . .  Well, in a few minutes I shall be all melted, and you will have the castle to your self.  I have been wicked in my day, but I never thought a little girl like you would ever be able to melt me and end my wicked deeds.  Lookout--here I go!"

Children's Book:  The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum, 1900 
Movie:  The Wizard of Oz, 1939

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Wilson (actor - Jack Palance)
"Prove it."

Movie:  Shane, 1953

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Winter, Lady de
"D'Artagnan!  d'Artagnan! remember that I have love you.  I am lost!  I must die! . . .  Where am I to die?"

Novel:  The Three Musketeers, Alexander Dumas

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"You stupid goose.  The opening's large enough.  Watch, even I can get in."

Fairy Tale:  "Hansel and Gretel," collected by the Brothers Grimm, 1812-1815

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Zaroff, General
"I see.  Splendid!  One of us is to furnish a repast for the hounds.  The other will sleep in this very excellent bed.  On guard, Rainsford."

Short Story:  "The Most Dangerous Game," by Richard Connell, 1924?

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Fictional Last Words Index