Steven Pressfield (born September 1943) is an American author of historical fiction and non-fiction, and screenplays.
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Gates of Fire (1998)
- I have always found the spear to be a rather inelegant weapon
- Apollo p. 47
- You have never tasted freedom friend, or you would know it is purchased not with gold, but steel.
- Dienekes p. 60
- If you think this is funny, wait 'till you get into combat. You'll think that's hysterical!
- Polynikes p. 80
- There is something I must tell you. When Leonidas selected you for the Three Hundred, I went to him in private and argued strenuously against your inclusion. I thought you would not fight. [...] I was wrong.
- Polynikes p. 324
- I believe him, Dienekes. He's so fucking stupid, this is just the way he would skrew it up.
- Polynikes p. 371
- This aspis was my father's and his father's before him. I have sworn before God to die before another man took this from my hand. He crossed to the ranks of Thespians, to a man, an obscure warrior among them. Into the fellow's grasp he placed the shield.
- Polynikes p. 405
- Why have I nominated you, lady, to bear up beneath this most terrible of trials, you and your sisters of the Three Hundred? Because you can.
- Leonides p. 427
- Do you love your country? [...] This man, with his life, has preserved it. Bear him with honor.
- Orontes (Handing over Xeones' corpse to Athenian civilians) p. 430
Last of the Amazons (2002)
- Both men were aware of the imperative held by all warrior races to serve honor before survival.
- Mother Bones (Narrator) p. 10
- At Athens and Athens alone, a new stamp of person was being born, neither baron nor yeoman, but a man of the city. A citizen.
- Father p. 87
- A youth loathes nothing more than his own callowness. Experience is his object. Experience, however ghastly, for the lad longs before all for the lined face and the chiseled squint of the vetern.
- Damon p.91
- Humankind is commanded to ascend from savagery. This is God's mandate, which cries out from the epicenter of our being: the imperative to mount from the base to the noble, from the savage to the civil, from beast to human.
- Theseus p. 119
- Straight to her face advanced the Athenian Lykos, and it must be said that it took no slender spirit for him to do so, such was the light of slaughter in the Amazon's eyes. "What do you call this, thou savage!" The prince gestured to the broth irrigating the walls and floors of the canyon. "Are these God's footsteps?" Is this the 'path of holiness' in which your race treads?" Theseus hastened forward, reining-in at his countryman's shoulder. "This is not war," Lykos bellowed to Antiope. "It is butchery!" Theseus sought to speak, as if to offer extenuation for the actions of the Amazons. Lykos cut him off with a curse. "You cannot defend the indefensible!"
- Lykos p.153
- Bear your command with humility. Lead, do not condescend. Remember, these are great events and men will rise to them. Treat every man as a Soldier. He may surprise you and be one.
- Theseus p. 210
- It is a terrible thing to be a king, especially a great one, for one must serve ideals of the spirit at the price of lovers of flesh and blood. Who profits from a king's fidelity save generations a thousand years unborn, and which of his works will they recall at that remove, or care?
- Damon p. 221
- The foe fell back. Our companies pushed through. For the time it takes to count to five hundred, I thought we might even conquer. For now the mulishness of the Athenian Soldier-farmer, the pigheaded refusal to yield which had at first been scorned by his betters-now this shone to the fore. By the gods, these clodkickers had learned how to fight! [...] They no longer fell apart at the apparition of cowardice among their comrades or themselves, but had come to understand that the same man may play the craven in the morning and the hero in the afternoon. Give them this: they were tough. Tougher than the Scyths and Getai, for all their savage valor, and tougher than the Amazons, despite their dash and dazzle.
- Damon p. 308
The War of Art (2002)
- Most of us have two lives. The life we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands Resistance.
- p. 13
- To yield to Resistance deforms our spirit. It stunts us and makes us less than we are and were born to be.
- p. 13
- The counterfeit innovator is wildly self-confident. The real one is scared to death.
- p. 50