Maximus: Ancestors, I ask you for your guidance. Blessed mother, come to me with the Gods' desire for my future. Blessed father, watch over my wife and son with a ready sword. Whisper to them that I live only to hold them again, for all else is dust and air. Ancestors, I honor you and will try to live with the dignity that you have taught me.
Maximus: Are you in danger of becoming a good man, Proximo?
Maximus: At my signal, unleash hell.
Maximus: Do you remember what it was to have trust, Proximo?
Proximo: [unfamiliarly] Trust?
Maximus: Five thousand of my men are out there in the freezing mud. Three thousand of them are bloodied and cleaved. Two thousand will never leave this place. I will not believe that they fought and died for nothing.
Marcus Aurelius: And what would you believe?
Maximus: They fought for you and for Rome.
Marcus Aurelius: And what is Rome, Maximus?
Maximus: I've seen much of the rest of the world. It is brutal and cruel and dark, Rome is the light.
Marcus Aurelius: Yet you have never been there. You have not seen what it has become. I am dying, Maximus. When a man sees his end... he wants to know there was some purpose to his life. How will the world speak my name in years to come? Will I be known as the philosopher? The warrior? The tyrant...? Or will I be the emperor who gave Rome back her true self? There was once a dream that was Rome. You could only whisper it. Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish... it was so fragile. And I fear that it will not survive the winter.
Maximus: Five thousand of my men are out there in the freezing mud. Three thousand of them are bloodied and cleaved. Two thousand will never leave this place. I will not believe they fought and died for nothing.
Maximus: I am required to kill, so I kill. That is enough.
Proximo: That's enough for the provinces, but not enough for Rome.
Maximus: I knew a man once who said, "Death smiles at us all. All a man can do is smile back."
Commodus: I wonder, did your friend smile at his own death?
Maximus: You must know. He was your father.
Commodus: You loved my father, I know. But so did I. That makes us brothers, doesn't it? Smile for me now, brother.
Maximus: I may die here in this cell or in the arena tomorrow. What possible difference can I make?
Maximus: Nothing happens to anyone that he is not fitted by nature to bear