15 Interesting, Insightful and Just Plain Random Last Words of Famous Authors

YouTube Channel: Pearls of Wisdom

Sometimes, words fail to suffice the depth of our emotions, capture our innermost thoughts, and honestly just don’t always come out the right way. Check out 15 of the last words and phrases spoken by some of the best authors, writers, and poets that have graced our world.

1. Joseph Wright, Linguist

Joseph was a prominent figure in the first publication of the English Dialect Dictionary. Funny enough, his last word was in fact, “Dictionary.” Talk about devotion to your profession!


Source: Wikipedia

2. George Orwell, Author

George Orwell was a notable writer and essayist during the 1940s and produced classic novels such as Animal Farm and 1984. His last words were, “At fifty, everyone has the face he deserves.”  This one made me laugh because of the bluntness of it. I suppose he is right!

1EN-625-B1945 Orwell, George (eigentl. Eric Arthur Blair), engl. Schriftsteller, Motihari (Indien) 25.1.1903 - London 21.1.1950. Foto, um 1945.

Source: Wikipedia

3. Vladimir Nabokov, Author

Vladimir Nabokov was a long-standing literary critic and Russian author who gained fame for his controversial novel, Lolita, published in 1955. His hobbies included studying the life and death of insects, more specifically butterflies. His last words were, “A certain butterfly is already on the wing.” Kind of remarkable and could be taken in a variety of ways if you think about it!


Source: Wikipedia

4. Herman Melville, Author

Herman Melville, perhaps best known for his novel Moby Dick, was a beloved American author during the mid 1800s who later devoted himself to writing mainly poetry later on in his life. His last words, “God bless Captain Vere!,” was a reference to his last novel he had finished, Billy Budd, a short story about a sailor’s life at sea.


Source: Wikipedia

5. Richard Feynman, Physicist, Author, Professor, Musician

Richard Feynman spent a majority of his life inquiring and studying quantum mechanics, in which most of his books were about. His last words were, “This dying is boring.”


Source: Telegraph

6. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Author and Physician

Sir Author Conan Doyle is perhaps best known as the creator of the classic Sherlock Holmes character and series. His last words, “You are wonderful,” were told to his wife as they held hands in his last moments. So sweet!


Source: Wikipedia

7. Ernest Hemingway, Author

Ernest Hemingway was an esteemed author whose most popular books include For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Old Man and the Sea. Before he took his own life, Hemingway told his wife, Mary, “Goodnight my kitten.”


Source: Wikipedia

8. Eugene O’Neill, Playwright

Eugene O’Neill was an American Pulitzer prize-winning playwright most known for being the first to introduce new techniques of American drama into his plays. Among his works were, The First Man and Three Plays. O’Neill was born in the Broadway Hotel and lay dying in a hotel in Boston. His last words were, “I knew it! Born in a hotel room and, goddamn it, dying in a hotel room.” That surely is ironic!


Source: Wikipedia

9. Charles Gussman, Writer and TV Announcer

Charles Gussman worked on the popular daytime soap-opera Days of Our Lives and in fact wrote the pilot episode for NBC’s longest-running scripted series. Wanting his last words to be memorable and smile-worthy he told his daughter, “And now for a final word from our sponsor.” Memorable, indeed!


Source: Soap Central

10. Emily Dickinson, Author

Emily Dickinson was an American poet and one of the first known women to enter into the world of writing during the mid-1800s, which was still a time where women were not seen as equal as their male counterparts. Some of her most notable works are Because I Could Not Stop for Death (check out a reading of it in the video above), I’m Nobody! Who Are You? as well as Heart, We Will Forget Him. Her last words were, ” I must go in, for the fog is rising.”


Source: French Quest

11. Truman Capote, Writer

Truman Capote was an American author, playwright, actor, among other professions who’s most well known works include In Cold Blood, a 1966 non-fiction novel surrounding the murders of the Herbert Clutter family and Breakfast at Tiffany’s in which Audrey Hepburn starred in the film adaptation. His last words were, “Mama-Mama-Mama.”

12. J.M. Barrie, Author

The creator and author of the beloved Peter Pan series was apparently not able to relax and enjoy a peaceful slumber. His last words were simply, “I can’t sleep.”


Source: Biography

13. Jane Austen, Author

Another highly regarded woman in literary history, Jane Austen’s last words were, ” I want nothing but death,” which were in response to what her sister asked her what she wanted. Some of Austen’s most famous works are Pride and Prejudice, Emma, Persuasion, and Sense and Sensibility.


Source: Wikipedia

14. James Joyce, Author

James Joyce was a well-known Irish poet and author who was popular during the early 1900s. He gained fame for introducing more explicit and complex ideas and plots into his writing. Among his most known works are Ulysses, Dubliners, and A Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man. His last words were, “Does nobody understand?”

by GisËle Freund, colour print, 1939

Source: NPG

15. Edgar Allan Poe, Author, Poet

Known for his classic works such as The Raven, Annabel Lee, and The Pit and the Pendulum, Edgar Allan Poe is hardly a name that most people do not recognize. After the death of his cherished wife, Virginia Eliza Clemm Poe in 1847, Poe was reportedly extremely depressed and lost his will to live. He passed away two years following his wife’s death. His last words do show that he might have been in extreme emotional pain, “Lord! Help my poor soul.”


Source: Epic Times


There you have it! 15 last words by a few of our most cherished authors, poets, playwrights and more! What would you want your last words to be?



Featured image via UCC Manhattan 

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