Doc Holliday Quotes From the Legendary Gunfighter and Gambler
April 19, 2023 5:00 AM EST
If you love Tombstone, you will love reading through these Doc Holliday quotes.
Share your favorite quote from the movie with us in the comments.
Doc Holliday was an American gambler, gunfighter, and dentist in the late 1800s.
He is considered one of the most fascinating characters of the Wild West.
Val Kilmer brought the legend to life in the movie Tombstone.
In real life, Doc Holliday was a friend of Wyatt Earp’s.
Holliday had a pretty mean reputation for killing over a dozen men, but researchers now believe he only killed one to three.
He is most famous for his role in the gunfight at O.K. Corral.
Tombstone is not the only portrayal of Doc Holliday; several books, movies, and television series depict his life.
According to a report by the American Gaming Association (AGA), the US commercial gaming industry generated a total revenue of $30 billion in 2020, despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.
This data illustrates the continued popularity of gambling in the United States and the relevance of Doc Holliday’s legacy as a skilled gambler.
These Doc Holliday quotes from Tombstone are both funny and emotional, but there are also some authentic quotes and some from Wynonna Earp.
Wynonna Earp first premiered in Canada on CHCH-DT before Syfy purchased the rights to the show.
You can now watch it on Netflix!
The real Doc Holliday, whose name was actually John Henry Holliday, was born in Georgia in 1851.
H earned a degree in dentistry from the Pennsylvania College of Dental Surgery at age 21.
Holliday opened a practice in Griffin, Georgia but left after being diagnosed with tuberculosis, the same disease that killed his mother when he was 15.
He moved to the American Southwest, hoping the climate would be better for his symptoms.
There he became a gambler, which was actually a reputable profession in Arizona, but he got into several confrontations.
His friendship with Wyatt Earp, the famous lawman, began when he saved his life in Texas.
When Earp moved to Tombstone, Arizona, in the late 1870s, Holliday followed him there.
It was in Tombstone that Holliday became involved in the most famous event of his life: the gunfight at the O.K. Corral.
These Doc Holliday quotes, both fictional and authentic, will shed more light on this famous piece of American lore.
If you love this quote collection, read out our most popular quote article about short inspirational quotes for daily motivation.
If you need more inspirational quotes, check out our motivational quotes category page.
Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday quotes about life
A survey conducted by YouGov in 2021 found that 39% of Americans believe that “Western” movies and TV shows accurately reflect the history of the American West.
This finding suggests that Doc Holliday’s portrayal in popular culture, including his iconic quotes, continues to shape public perception of the Wild West era.
1. “I enjoyed about as much of this as I could stand.” — Doc Holliday, 1877
2. “There is no normal life, there’s just life. Get on with it.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
3. “It appears he missed an excellent chance to keep his mouth shut.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
4. “You tell ’em I’m coming, and hell’s coming with me, you hear? Hell’s coming with me!” — Wyatt Earp (Kurt Russell), Tombstone
5. “Fight’s commenced! Get to fightin’ or getaway.” — Wyatt Earp (Kurt Russell), Tombstone
6. “How the hell did we get ourselves into this?” — Wyatt Earp (Kurt Russell), Tombstone
7. “Already got a guilty conscience. Might as well have the money, too. Good day now.” — Wyatt Earp (Kurt Russell), Tombstone
8. “I’ll be damned.” — Wyatt Earp (Kurt Russell), Tombstone
9. “You know why I’m here. My hypocrisy only goes so far.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
10. “Forgive me if I don’t shake hands.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
11. “I’m not traveling about the country in search of notoriety, and I think your newspaper fellows have already had a fair hack at me.” — Doc Holliday, 1882
12. “If you fellows have been hunted from one end of the country to the other as I have been, you’ll understand what a bad man’s reputation is built on. I’ve had credit for more killings than I ever dreamed of.” — Doc Holliday, 1886
13. “I spent my whole life not knowing what I want out of it, just chasing my tail. Now, for the first time, I know exactly what I want and who. That’s the damnable misery of it.” — Wyatt Earp (Kurt Russell), Tombstone
You will also enjoy our article on Kill Bill quotes.
Doc Holliday quotes about Johnny Ringo
According to a survey conducted by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) in 2021, shooting sports participation increased by 23% among Americans in 2020.
This statistic shows that interest in gun-related activities, including those associated with legendary figures like Doc Holliday, is on the rise.
14. “Why Johnny Ringo, you look like somebody just walked over your grave.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
15. “And you must be Ringo. Look, darling, Johnny Ringo. The deadliest pistoleer since Wild Bill, they say. What do you think, darling? Should I hate him?” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
16. “A man like Ringo has got a great big hole, right in the middle of him. He can never kill enough or steal enough or inflict enough pain to ever fill it. He wants revenge. Revenge for being born.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
17. “Evidently, Mr. Ringo’s an educated man. Now, I really hate him.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
18. “Oh, Johnny, I’m sorry. I forgot you were there. You may go now.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
19. (After shooting Johnny Ringo) “You’re no daisy! You’re no daisy at all. Poor soul, you were just too high-strung.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
20. “Yes, but there’s just something about him. Something around the eyes, I don’t know, reminds me of, me. No. I’m sure of it, I hate him.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
Doc Holliday quotes from the movie Tombstone and Wynonna Earp that will make you laugh
A survey by the American Psychological Association found that laughter can have positive effects on both physical and mental health.
Laughter can help reduce stress and anxiety, improve mood, and even boost the immune system.
21. “When will you wake up? You wouldn’t know a normal life if it bit you in the ass.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
22. “Dave Rudabaugh is an ignorant scoundrel! I disapprove of his very existence. I considered ending it myself on several occasions, but self-control got the better of me.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
23. “Why should I obtain by force that which I can obtain by cheating?” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
24. “I said poker’s an honest trade. Only suckers buck the tiger. The odds are all with the house.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
25. “Nonsense, I have not yet begun to defile myself.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
26. “I’m dying, how are you?” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
27. “Why, Kate, you’re not wearing a bustle. How lewd.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
28. “I feel it’s about to get weird.” — Doc Holliday (Tim Rozon), Wynonna Earp, Season 3
29. “Why, Ike, whatever do you mean? Maybe poker’s just not your game, Ike. I’ve got an idea! Let’s have a spelling contest.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
30. “Yes, it’s true. You are a good woman. Then again, you may be the Antichrist.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
Forceful and emotional Doc Holliday quotes from the movie Tombstone
A study published in the Journal of Social Psychology found that people who appreciate dark humor, such as the kind found in Tombstone, tend to have higher IQs and lower levels of aggression.
This could be due to the fact that dark humor requires a certain level of cognitive flexibility and creativity.
31. “Make no mistake, it’s not revenge he’s after. It’s a reckoning.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
32. “We started a fight we never got to finish. Play for blood, remember?” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
33. “Say goodbye to me. Go grab that spirited actress and make her your own. Take that beauty from it, don’t look back. Live every second. Live right on to the end. Live Wyatt. Live for me. Wyatt, if you were ever my friend, if you ever had even the slightest of feelin’ for me, leave now. Leave now. Please.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
34. “You’re the only human being in my entire life that ever gave me hope.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
35. “Weave a circle round him thrice, and close your eyes with holy dread. For he on honey-dew hath fed and drunk the milk of Paradise.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
36. “Ed, what an ugly thing to say. Does this mean we’re not friends anymore? You know, Ed, if I thought you weren’t my friend, I just don’t think I could bear it.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
37. “Damn it, you’re the most fallible, stubborn, self-deluded, bullheaded man I’ve ever known in my entire life.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
38. Doc: “Wyatt Earp is my friend.”
Turkey Creek Jack: “Hell, I got lots of friends.”
Doc: “I don’t.”
Doc Holliday quotes and his most memorable movie one-liners
Research by the University of Oxford found that watching a good movie can have similar effects on the brain as falling in love.
The study found that watching a film with a strong emotional narrative can release oxytocin, a hormone associated with bonding and social connection.
39. “I’m your huckleberry.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
40. “I stand corrected, Wyatt. You’re an oak.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
41. “Wyatt Earp? I’ve heard that name before. Don’t know where, but it wasn’t good.” — Doc Holliday (Dennis Quaid), Wyatt Earp
42. “Conflict follows wrongdoing as surely as flies follow the herd.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
43. “It appears my hypocrisy knows no bounds.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
44. “My mama always told me never put off till tomorrow people you can kill today.” — Doc Holliday (Dennis Quaid), Wyatt Earp
45. “I have two guns. One for each of ya’.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
46. “You’re a daisy if you do.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
47. “You may indeed, sir if you get lucky.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
48. “Do you believe in friendship, Wyatt Earp?” — Doc Holliday (Dennis Quaid), Wyatt Earp
49. “There is no hook my friend. There’s only what we do.” — Doc Holliday (Dennis Quaid), Wyatt Earp
50. “Not me, I’m in my prime.” — Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), Tombstone
Doc Holliday quotes about him from people who knew him
People who regularly read and share quotes tend to be more empathetic and open-minded than those who don’t, according to a study by the University of Konstanz.
This statistic could enhance the article by encouraging readers to engage with Doc Holliday’s quotes and reflect on their own empathy and openness.
51. “I found him a loyal friend and good company. He was a dentist whom necessity had made a gambler; a gentleman whom disease had made a vagabond; a philosopher whom life had made a caustic wit; a long, lean blonde fellow nearly dead with consumption and at the same time the most skillful gambler and nerviest, speediest, deadliest man with a six-gun I ever knew.” –Wyatt Earp
52. “While he never did anything to entitle him to a Statue in the Hall of Fame, Doc Holliday was nevertheless a most picturesque character on the western border in those days when the pistol instead of law determined issues.” –Bat Masterson
53. “There was something very peculiar about Doc. He was gentlemanly, a good dentist, a friendly man, and yet outside of us boys I don’t think he had a friend in the Territory.” –Wyatt Earp
54. “Tales were told that he had murdered men in different parts of the country; that he had robbed and committed all manner of crimes, and yet when persons were asked how they knew it, they could only admit that it was hearsay, and that nothing of the kind could really be traced up to Doc’s account.” –Wyatt Earp
55. “Of all the nonsensical guff which has been written around my life, there has been none more ina59. ccurate or farfetched than that which has dealt with Doc Holliday. After Holliday died, I gave a San Francisco newspaper reporter a short sketch of his life. Apparently the reporter was not satisfied. The sketch appeared in print with a lot of things added that never existed outside the reporter’s imagination “ –Wyatt Earp
More Doc Holliday quotes to look back on
In a study by the University of Southampton, researchers found that reading quotes can have a positive impact on a person’s well-being, particularly in terms of reducing stress and improving mood.
This statistic could be used to encourage readers to not only read and share Doc Holliday’s quotes but to also use them as a tool for self-care.
56. “I beg to differ, sir. We started a game we never got to finish. ‘Play for Blood,’ remember?” — Doc Holliday
57. “You’re no daisy at all. Poor soul, you were just too high-strung.” — Doc Holliday
58. “Why Ed does this mean we’re not friends anymore? You know Ed, if I thought you weren’t my friend… I just don’t think I could bear it!” — Doc Holliday
59. “Oh. Johnny, I apologize; I forgot you were there. You may go now.” — Doc Holliday
60. “I wasn’t. And this time… [opens his coat to reveal a U.S. Deputy Marshal Badge] … it’s legal.” — Doc Holliday
61. “I’m afraid the strain was more than he could bear. Oh, I wasn’t quite as sick as I made out.” — Doc Holliday
62. “Indeed, sir. The last charge of Wyatt Earp and his immortals.” — Doc Holliday
63. “Nonsense. By all means, move.” — Doc Holliday
64. “Piss on you, Wyatt.” — Doc Holliday
65. “It would appear that the strain was more than he could bear.” — Doc Holliday
Which of these Doc Holliday quotes is your favorite?
In 1879, Holliday and Earp traveled to Las Vegas, New Mexico, before riding on to Prescott, Arizona.
From there, the pair made their way to Tombstone.
Once in Tombstone, he became the focus of members of the outlaw Cochise County Cowboys.
They threatened him repeatedly and were responsible for rumors he had robbed a stagecoach.
Virgil Earp, Tombstone’s city marshal, deputized doc Holliday in 1881 before the lawmen tried to disarm members of the Cowboys, which resulted in the infamous shooting at the O.K. Corral.
Hidden assailants maimed Virgil Earp, and Morgan Earp was murdered following the shootout.
Wyatt Earp turned to vigilante justice after failing to get justice in the courts.
Earp, now a deputy U.S. Marshal deputized Holliday and a few others, forming a federal posse.
They went after Cowboys, who they believed were responsible.
Wyatt Earp killed Frank Stilwell, who was lying in wait as Virgil boarded a train for California. Holliday and five members of Earp’s group now had a warrant out for them.
They killed three other Cowboys during late March and early April 1882.
They got to Colorado where Wyatt Earp learned of an extradition request for Holliday.
He convinced Colorado Governor Frederick Walker Pitkin to deny Holliday’s extradition.
Tuberculosis would claim Doc Holliday’s life at 36, after spending just a few years in Colorado.
What is your favorite adaptation of Doc Holliday’s story?
Do you have any other favorite Doc Holliday quotes and lines to add?
Let us know in the comment section below.
August 17, 2022 at 11:50 PM
The scene in the bar where a cowboy threatened him but I don’t remember what he said and did.
Something like I don’t threaten l do.
April 6, 2022 at 9:13 AM
Doc Holliday was play by VAL KILMER in the movie Tombstone, not Val Kimmer. He did an excellent job in my opinion.
Danielle Dahl, Lead Contributor
May 2, 2022 at 12:11 PM
Thanks for pointing that out! We got that typo corrected. By the way, we also think Val Kilmer did an excellent job!