I have long feared my sins will return to visit me, and the cost is more than I can bear.

~ Benjamin Martin

Colonel Benjamin "The Ghost" Martin is the main protagonist of The Patriot and was a soldier that fought in the French and Indian War for Great Britain and in the American Revolutionary War for the United States of America.

He was portrayed by the legendary Mel Gibson.


Martin was the widowed father of seven children who did what he could to avoid fighting in the Revolutionary War, knowing the implications surrounding it. When his oldest son, Gabriel joins up, and his second born son, Thomas, is killed by Colonel William Tavington, he takes it upon himself to join and fight with the colonial militia. Before the war was over, Benjamin Martin had his revenge by killing Tavington.


Martin is a quiet family man who seeks to avoid conflict wherever possible, following his violent past. Though Martin is the protagonist of the film, he is no saint. Martin at one point killed 20 British soldiers with his sons because his other son was killed by their commander. The last one was trying to flee, but he chased him down and brutally hacked him to death with a tomahawk. Following this act, he looked up at the sky, silently begging God for His forgiveness. Martin later revealed that he took this tomahawk from two Indians who he murdered and cut into pieces. He said that, following this, he was regarded as a hero, yet never forgave himself and, daily, begged God's forgiveness. Martin attempted to bury this part of himself, however the war brought it back out. 


  • While Benjamin Martin is a fictional character, he is based on a composite of historical characters which include Thomas Sumter, Daniel Morgan, Nathanael Greene, Andrew Pickens and Francis Marion.
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