Roman soldiers and death in harness

“Die in harness” (death in harness) means to die with armor on; to die while actively engaged in work or duty.
This phrase is often used to refer to Government or Non government servants who die while in active service.

The phrase has roots in Roman culture and tradition.

In ancient Roman culture, all soldiers were dedicated as bridegrooms to the goddesses of war. They were not permitted to marry or have a family. They were 24x7 soldiers. Once they joined the military service, they discarded all ties with their family. All of them were unmarried young men.