"Yes, Stone's greetings friendThe Legion accepts all.
You will fight ceaselessly in
The Legion of the Dead."
--Motto of the Legion of the Dead.
So I was told by one of the Legionnaires himself, a dwarf who waited quietly at the entrance to the Deep Roads for the rest of his unit to assemble. They gathered slowly, each equipped with heavy armor and fine weapons, each painted with grim tattoos applied at their funerals the night previous.
For that is the nature of the Legion. They are all dead. Any dwarf may join the Legion, so long as he is willing to give up everything he has. The funeral rites are somber: a final goodbye is said to family and loved ones, any material goods are dispersed to heirs and last words are said, and then it is done. The new Legionnaire marches out into the Deep Roads, never to return. The Legion fights against the darkspawn to the last, striking one final blow against the monsters that have claimed so much of their homeland.
Many join the Legion to clear the slate. Criminals join to avoid punishment. The dishonored join so that their houses and families need not suffer on their behalf. The bankrupted join so their debts might be forgiven. A very few join for a last chance at glory, but the Legion takes them too.
This group hopes to reach the fabled fortress of Bownammar, once the Legion's home, associated with the greatest of their Paragons. Bownammar is a holy place, its loss the last great blow against the dwarven kingdoms, and its recapture would be a glorious signal to all of Orzammar. But capture it or no, all of these warriors will die in the Deep Roads. It is a sobering thought, and I now know why the dwarves say the Legion's charge is the battlefield's most frightening sight. They have nothing left to lose.