Quotations by Robert E. Lee

Duty then is the sublimest word in the English language. You should do your duty in all things. You can never do more, you should never wish to do less.

To be a good soldier, you must love the army. To be a good commander, you must be willing to order the death of the thing you love.

Strike the tent.
(Last words, 12 October 1870)

You cannot be a true man until you learn to obey.
(To students at Washington College)

True patriotism sometimes requires of men to act exactly contrary, at one period, to that which it does at another, and the motive which impels them the desire to do right is precisely the same.
(Letter to General P. G. T. Beauregard, October 3, 1865)

It is well that war is so terrible. Otherwise we would grow too fond of it.
(Statement at the Battle of Fredericksburg (13th December 1862))