Duty (from "due," that which is owing, O. Fr. deu, did, past participle of devoir; Lat. debere, debitum; cf. "debt") is a term loosely applied to any action (or course of action) which is regarded as morally incumbent, apart from personal likes and dislikes or any external compulsion.
- The great problem is not to serve ones duties. The great problem is to understand what is my duty.
- Duty grows everywhere, like children, like grass.
- Duty is the sublimest word in our language. Do your duty in all things. You cannot do more. You should never wish to do less.
- Perish discretion when it interferes with duty.
- The people of this country have shown by the highest proofs human nature can give, that wherever the path of duty and honor may lead, however steep and rugged it may be, they are ready to walk in it.
- The true way to render ourselves happy is to love our duty and find in it our pleasure.
- Let him who gropes painfully in darkness or uncertain light, and prays vehemently that the dawn may ripen into day, lay this precept well to heart: "Do the duty which lies nearest to thee," which thou knowest to be a duty! Thy second duty will already have become clearer.
- Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
- Commonplace though it may appear, this doing of one's duty embodies the highest ideal of life and character. There may be nothing heroic about it; but the common lot of men is not heroic.
- Who escapes a duty avoids a gain.
- Let us do our duty in our shop or our kitchen, the market, the street, the office, the school, the home, just as faithfully as if we stood in the front rank of some great battle, and we knew that victory for mankind depended upon our bravery, strength, and skill. When we do that the humblest of us will be serving in that great army which achieves the welfare of the world.
- In every profession the daily and common duties are the most useful.
- Let men laugh when you sacrifice desire to duty, if they will. You have time and eternity to rejoice in.
- Be not diverted from your duty by any idle reflections the silly world may make upon you, for their censures are not in your power, and consequently should not be any part of your concern.
- It is thy duty oftentimes to do what thou wouldst not; thy duty, too, to leave undone that thou wouldst do.
- There is no evil that we cannot either face or fly from but the consciousness of duty disregarded. A sense of duty pursues us ever. It is omnipresent, like the Deity. If we take to ourselves the wings of the morning, and dwell in the utmost parts of the seas, duty performed, or duty violated, is still with us, for our happiness or our misery. If we say the darkness shall cover us, in the darkness as in the light our obligations are yet with us. We cannot escape their power, nor fly from their presence. They are with us in this life, will be with us at its close, and in that scene of inconceivable solemnity which lies yet further onward we shall still find ourselves surrounded by the consciousness of duty, to pain us wherever it has been violated, and to console us so far as God may have given us grace to perform it.
- Duty is heavier than a mountain, death lighter than a feather
- Japanese proverb, also used by Robert Jordan
- Do not confuse "duty" with what other people expect of you; they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.
- When I get to heaven, to St. Peter I will tell; One more Marine reporting sir, I've done my time in hell.
- England expects that every man will do his duty.
- For a right is never anything but the other aspect of a duty.