The Swede
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Quotes for
The Swede (Character)
from "Hell on Wheels" (2011)

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"Hell on Wheels: Slaughterhouse (#2.3)" (2012)
[first lines]
The Swede: In the beginning, there was blood. The land demands it. Every new land demands blood, and we relent. It is our nature.
[farmer bludgeons a pig]
The Swede: We are after all, animals. In our arrogance we forget this. But, in the end we rise from the land - only to return.

The Swede: Our Lord rode into Jerusalem on the back of an ass. One of the first things he done when he got there was cleanse the Temple. Threw the money lenders out on their avaricious rumps. It's time we over turned the tables, Reverend. We must cast them out.

The Swede: You keep agitating trouble on this railroad, and you're goin' to a deep sleep at the bottom of your mud pile. And they'll be no one to mourn or miss you, either.
Cullen Bohannan: You will miss me, Mr. Bohannan.

"Hell on Wheels: Chinatown (#5.1)" (2015)
The Swede: [to dog] You know, I have some bones to bury too, eh?
[opens crate with guns]

[last lines]
The Swede: I am the one true prophet.
Cullen Bohannan: Prophet? You have any followers? Besides that tick-bit mongrel?
The Swede: [looks to the dog] I will reveal you, Mr. Bohannan, as you have revealed me. For if I was never Bishop Dotson, you have never been reformed husband and father. No, you are the devil, sent by divine providence to test me. To forge me into the lion I must become. Oh, I look forward to this next test. Devil.
Cullen Bohannan: Now you think I'm the devil. That's fine. Probably take the devil to finish this road.
The Swede: Mm hmm.
Cullen Bohannan: And you can call yourself whatever you like, long as you brought a shovel. 'Cause this ain't the Mormon fort, you Swedish son of a bitch. You work for me. I gotta race to win.
[slams his door shut]

"Hell on Wheels: God of Chaos (#1.10)" (2012)
Thomas 'Doc' Durant: Mr. Gundersen, have you ever had your heart ripped out by a woman?
The Swede: I was married once, sir, but she run off with a gypsy. Uh, my heart was not ripped out, but, she did steal my cuckoo clock.

The Swede: [mocking Bohannan as he searches for his quarry] In the midst of my homeland, there is a god who goes by the name of Loki. This Loki is the god of chaos. He causes nothing but trouble where ever he goes. No matter how hard the other gods try catch him, the slippery little devil always manages to escape.

"Hell on Wheels: White Justice (#5.3)" (2015)
The Swede: Just as I expected. It is ordained from on high that you should put suffering in my path.
Cullen Bohannan: Mmm. Best get to shoveling, then.
[pushes past him]
The Swede: I was right to put down in that well, just as now it is right that you set me to shoveling snow far away - in the wilderness, where my brethren freeze and starve.
Cullen Bohannan: We pay enough to keep them fed.
The Swede: It is what I have said. That to be tested by you is the making of my soul. You are God's instrument.

The Swede: You have said what is in your heart, and what is true. But truth... truth does not always serve us. When it is... when it is so naked and hot, it will not allow us to... to enact God's will.
[tears up Phineas' letter]

"Hell on Wheels: Blood Moon Rising (#2.10)" (2012)
Thomas 'Doc' Durant: What am I going to do!
The Swede: Your suffering, that is good. Suffering builds character.

The Swede: In your own myopic single-mindedness,
The Swede: I was surprised that you made it so easy to take her from you. Thank you. It was inexplicably pleasurable.
Cullen Bohannan: Not as much as it'll be to see you swing, you evil son of a bitch.
The Swede: Regrettably not, Mr. Bohannan. For you and I are now consummated. Are we not?

"Hell on Wheels: Escape from the Garden (#4.2)" (2014)
The Swede: They're planning his escape, now you do your duty.
Aaron Hatch: My duty's to God.
The Swede: God speaks through me!

"Hell on Wheels: Pride, Pomp and Circumstance (#1.6)" (2011)
The Swede: This brigand... this rebel has upset the balance once again, and he must be dealt with.
Mr. Toole: I still don't follow.
The Swede: Why does that not surprise me?

"Hell on Wheels: Immoral Mathematics (#1.2)" (2011)
The Swede: I used to be a bookkeeper.
Cullen Bohannan: You look like a bookkeeper.
The Swede: Mm. I was always more comfortable around numbers than people. I could control numbers.
Cullen Bohannan: The war put a stop to that, didn't it?

"Hell on Wheels: The Elusive Eden (#4.1)" (2014)
[last lines]
Cullen Bohannan: You're not allowing me to leave. Is that as Bishop Dutson, or a the Swede? Also known as Thor Gundersen.
The Swede: The late Thor Gundersen was Norwegian!
Cullen Bohannan: Well, who ever you are, you better shoot to kill. I'm comin' back to finish this once and for all.

"Hell on Wheels: Jamais je ne t'oublierai (#1.4)" (2011)
The Swede: Now now, boys. I doubt Mr. Durant wants his new foreman assassinated.
Bolan: He shot my dang ear off, Swede.
The Swede: Too bad it was not your tongue.

"Hell on Wheels: The White Spirit (#2.7)" (2012)
The Swede: Your Southern prison exposed bone - the marrow truth of who we are.
Cullen Bohannan: We? You got rye in your pocket?
The Swede: In Gundersenville, cold rat meat was a delicacy. And then of course human flesh. You watched as we fought over scraps, and they - they laughed.
[points at him]
The Swede: We lived in our putrid holes we scratched out of the ground. Drinking and defecating in the same water, with disease, vermin, starvation, and cold. A cold death. All the while, you were watching. When I see you, I see them. I hated you even before we met. Now you know why you hate me, huh?
Cullen Bohannan: You're one insane, evil, son of a bitch.
The Swede: Not insane. One day, very soon, you will understand that. The reason you hate me is that I am a constant reminder of the capacity for evil that reside within you.

"Hell on Wheels: Return to Hell (#4.10)" (2014)
Collis Huntington: Tell me, did you ever have the opportunity to work with Cullen Bohannon? That man impresses the hell out of me.
The Swede: Everything I know I learned by careful study of Cullen Bohannon.
Collis Huntington: How about that?

"Hell on Wheels: Revelations (#1.7)" (2011)
The Swede: In the end, when all is said and done, all we own is our death. It's conceived in us the moment we was born, and we carry that burden the best we can.
[closes dead man's eyes]
The Swede: I've seen men die screaming. I've see men die with nary a bleat.
Bolan: Mmm. Well, this one here died trying to draw down on Cullen Bohannan.
The Swede: Well then, perhaps he was stupid after all.

"Hell on Wheels: Get Behind the Mule (#3.10)" (2013)
Cullen Bohannan: I'm still liable to kill you. Know that.
The Swede: Don't you think it possible for a man to change? Can't you believe I am not the man I was?
Cullen Bohannan: I don't trust you farther than I can spit.

"Hell on Wheels: A New Birth of Freedom (#1.3)" (2011)
Thomas 'Doc' Durant: You amused?
The Swede: No sir. I'm just looking forward to watching, yet again, as you smite the forces again' you.