These Tecumseh quotes will encourage you to commit an act of valor.
Tecumseh was a Shawnee chief who resisted United States expansion and fought to defend Native American people and lands. He promoted tribal unity through a Native American confederacy.
As a fearless warrior, Tecumseh dedicated his life to protecting his community up until his death in the War of 1812. Tecumseh is considered to be a folk hero in American and Indigenous history. Read the teachings of Tecumseh and this list of the best Tecumseh quotes to learn more about his life and legacy.
His courage will inspire you to face your own fears and overcome your own obstacles. As you read through these incredible words of wisdom, you will feel yourself becoming more empowered. Share these Tecumseh quotes with someone in your life who could use encouragement and strength.
Don’t forget to also check out these warrior quotes on having an unbeatable mind.
Tecumseh quotes highlighting his bravery, passion, and faith
1. “A single twig breaks, but the bundle of twigs is strong.” – Tecumseh
2. “When your time comes to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song, and die like a hero going home.” – Tecumseh
3. “Show respect to all people, but grovel to none.” – Tecumseh
4. “From my tribe I take nothing, I am the maker of my own fortune.” – Tecumseh
5. “When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself.” – Tecumseh
6. “Let us form one body, one heart, and defend to the last warrior our country, our homes, our liberty, and the graves of our fathers.” – Tecumseh
7. “When the legends die, the dreams end; there is no more greatness.” – Tecumseh
8. “Live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart.” – Tecumseh
9. “Always give a word or sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend, or even a stranger, if in a lonely place.” – Tecumseh
10. “Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide.” – Tecumseh
Tecumseh quotes to encourage and motivate
11. “Sell a country?! Why not sell the air, the great sea, as well as the earth? Did not the Great Spirit make them all for the use of his children?” – Tecumseh
12. “I have made myself what I am. And I would that I could make the red people as great as the conceptions of my own mind when I think of the Great Spirit that rules over us all.” – Tecumseh
13. “Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life. Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people.” – Tecumseh
14. “Before the palefaces came among us, we enjoyed the happiness of unbounded freedom and were acquainted with neither riches, wants, nor oppression.” – Tecumseh
15. “I am Shawnee! I am a warrior! My forefathers were warriors. From them, I took only my birth into this world.” – Tecumseh
16. “The white usurpation in our common country must be stopped, or we, its rightful owners, be forever destroyed and wiped out as a race of people. I am now at the head of many warriors backed by the strong arm of English soldiers. Choctaws and Chickasaws, you have too long borne with grievous usurpation inflicted by the arrogant Americans.” – Tecumseh
17. “You, too, will be driven away from your native land and ancient domains as leaves are driven before the wintry storms. Sleep not longer, O Choctaws and Chickasaws, in false security and delusive hopes. Our broad domains are fast escaping from our grasp.” – Tecumseh
18. “The Great Spirit is angry with all men that tell lies.” – Tecumseh
19. “Since my residence at Tippecanoe, we have endeavored to level all distinctions, to destroy village chiefs, by whom all mischiefs are done. It is they who sell the land to the Americans.” – Tecumseh
20. “We gave them forest-clad mountains and valleys full of game, and in return what did they give our warriors and our women? Rum, trinkets, and a grave.” – Tecumseh
Tecumseh quotes that are great examples of courage
21. “Every year, our white intruders become more greedy, exacting, oppressive, and overbearing. Every year, contentions spring up between them and our people, and when blood is shed, we have to make atonement, whether right or wrong, at the cost of the lives of our greatest chiefs and the yielding up of large tracts of our lands.” – Tecumseh
22. “Trouble no one about their religion; respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours.” – Tecumseh
23. “The Great Spirit made all things. He gave the white people a home beyond the great waters. He supplied these grounds with game, and gave them to his red children; and he gave them strength and courage to defend them.” – Tecumseh
24. “Where today are the Pequot? Where are the Narragansett, the Mohican, the Pcanet, and other powerful tribes of our people? They have vanished before the avarice and oppression of the white man, as snow before the summer sun.” – Tecumseh
25. “Let us form one body, one heart, and defend to the last warrior our country, our homes, our liberty, and the graves of our fathers.” – Tecumseh
26. “Abuse no one and nothing, for abuse turns the wise ones to fools and robs the spirit of its vision.” – Tecumseh
27. “Brothers, we must be united; we must smoke the same pipe; we must fight each other’s battles; and more than all, we must love the Great Spirit.” – Tecumseh
28. “When Jesus Christ came upon the Earth, you killed Him. The son of your own God. And only after He was dead did you worship Him and start killing those who would not.” – Tecumseh
29. “Here is how the Americans have treated us well: They have killed many Shawnee, many Winnebagoes, many Miamis, many Delawares, and have taken land from them. When they killed them, no American ever was punished, not one.” – Tecumseh
30. “When the white men approach you the yawning earth shall swallow them up. Soon shall you see my arm of fire stretched athwart the sky. I will stamp my foot at Tippecanoe, and the very earth shall shake.” – Tecumseh
Tecumseh quotes to inspire you to live your life
31. “Brothers, we are friends; we must assist each other to bear our burdens. The blood of many of our fathers and brothers has run like water on the ground, to satisfy the avarice of the white men.” – Tecumseh
32. “Let the white race perish. They seize your land; they corrupt your women; they trample on the ashes of your dead! Back, whence they came, upon a trail of blood, they must be driven.” – Tecumseh
33. “The red men have borne many and great injuries; they ought to suffer them no longer. My people will not; they are determined on vengeance; they have taken up the tomahawk; they will make it fat with blood; they will drink the blood of the white people.” – Tecumseh
34. “Burn their dwellings! Destroy their stock! Slay their wives and children! The Red Man owns the country, and the Pale-faces must never enjoy it.” – Tecumseh
35. “The white men despise and cheat the Indians; they abuse and insult them; they do not think the red men sufficiently good to live.” – Tecumseh
36. “War now! War forever! War upon the living! War upon the dead! Dig their very corpses from the grave. Our country must give no rest to a white man’s bones. This is the will of the Great Spirit.” – Tecumseh
37. “We, ourselves, are threatened with a great evil; nothing will pacify them but the destruction of all the red men.” – Tecumseh
38. “The white people have no right to take the land from the Indians because the Indians had it first.” – Tecumseh
39. “If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in yourself…” – Tecumseh
40. “The way, and the only way, to stop this evil is for all the red men to unite in claiming a common and equal right in the land, as it was at first, and should be yet; for it was never divided, but belongs to all for the use of each.” – Tecumseh
More Tecumseh quotes
41. “Will we let ourselves be destroyed in our turn without a struggle, give up our homes, our country bequeathed to us by the Great Spirit, the graves of our dead, and everything that is dear and sacred to us? I know you will cry with me, ‘Never! Never!’” – Tecumseh
42. “Brothers, the white people are like poisonous serpents: when chilled they are feeble and harmless but invigorate them with warmth and they sting their benefactors to death.” – Tecumseh
43. “My father! The sun is my father, and the earth is my mother, and on her bosom, I will recline.” – Tecumseh
44. “I would not then come to Governor Harrison to ask him to tear up the treaty, and to obliterate the landmark, but I would say to him, ‘Sir, you have the liberty to return to your own country.’” – Tecumseh
45. “The whites have driven us from the sea to the lakes. We can go no further… unless every tribe unanimously combines to give a check to the ambition and avarice of the whites they will soon conquer us apart and disunited and we will be driven from our native country and scattered as autumn leaves before the wind.” – Tecumseh
46. “And of that, I might make the destiny of my red people, of our nation, as great as I conceive to in my mind, when I think of Weshemoneto, who rules this universe!” – Tecumseh
47. “My people wish for peace; the red men all wish for peace; but where the white people are, there is no peace for them, except it be on the bosom of our mother.” – Tecumseh
48. “The white men aren’t friends to the Indians… At first, they only asked for land sufficient for a wigwam; now, nothing will satisfy them but the whole of our hunting grounds from the rising to the setting sun.” – Tecumseh
49. “Accursed be the race that has seized on our country and made women of our warriors. Our fathers, from their tombs, reproach us as slaves and cowards. I hear them now in the wailing winds…The spirits of the mighty dead complain. Their tears drop from the weeping skies.” – Tecumseh
50. “Someday I will embrace our brother tribes and draw them into a bundle and together we will win our country back from the whites.” – Tecumseh
What are your favorite Tecumseh quotes?
As a Shawnee chief, Tecumseh had a tremendous impact on war, religion, and advancements in society. If you are looking for motivation or guidance, read the insight thoughts of this brilliant leader. His advice will inspire and empower you. These Tecumseh quotes on death are the perfect reminders to live your life.
The Battle of Tippecanoe, the Battle of the Thames, and many other sieges from that time were led by Tecumseh. His acts of valors and wartime accomplishments are undeniable. The next time you are feeling fearful and ready to run away from your problems, just think of the resilience of Tecumseh and his empowering death song quotes.
What are your favorite Tecumseh quotes and sayings to inspire you to live your life? Let us know in the comment section below.
April 14, 2021 7:00 AM EST