Crime and Punishment Quotes

A quote or quotation is a single or several representative lines from a literary piece that shows the universality of ideas. Quotes from Fyodor Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment also show mastery and skill of the writer in presenting universal human passions, emotions, and natural habits. Some of the major quotes of Crime and Punishment have been discussed below.

Quotes in Crime and Punishment

Quote #1

And He will judge and will forgive all. … And when He has done with all of them, then He will summon us. ‘You too come forth,’ He will say, ‘Come forth ye drunkards, come forth, ye weak ones, come forth, ye children of shame! … This is why I receive them … that not one of them believed himself to be worthy of this.’

Part -I, Chapter -II

Marmeladov, the alcoholic, speaks these lines to express his belief that God is merciful and would forgive them all of their mistakes on the Day of Judgement. He speaks these words to show how God speaks to all the sinners, whether drunks or criminals. He asks everyone to come forward and enjoy His mercy. Even though none of these people will believe, he says that God would forgive them all.

Quote #2

Kill her, take her money and with the help of it devote oneself to the service of humanity and the good of all. What do you think, would not one tiny crime be wiped out by thousands of good deeds? … One death, and a hundred lives in exchange—it’s simple arithmetic!

Part -I, Chapter -VI

The student responds to the officer that the murder of the old woman, Alyona, is the new ethical framework. He gives logical reasoning that if by killing one person, a hundred persons are given assistance, it is a noble deed. What he means is that the murder of the old woman, the crime committed is not a punishable offense but a simple arithmetical rule.

Quote #3

If he had to remain standing on a square yard of space all his life, a thousand years, eternity, it were better to live so than to die at once! Only to live, to live and live! Life, whatever it may be! … How true it is! Good God, how true! Man is a vile creature! … And vile is he who calls him vile for that.

Part -II, Chapter -VI

Raskolnikov speaks these lines about life. He refers to Victor Hugo’s life that people, despite knowing to live on the edge, still continue living. However, it is human nature to love life. Therefore, a person, who calls that man a vile creature for his bad deeds, is also equally bad.

Quote #4

Human nature is not taken into account, it is excluded, it’s not supposed to exist! … They believe that a social system that has come out of some mathematical brain is going to organise all humanity at once and make it just and sinless in an instant, quicker than any living process! … The living soul demands life; the soul won’t obey the rules of mechanics.

Part -III, Chapter -V

Razumikhin tries to explain the political philosophy of socialism. He says it does not consider human nature. He believes that this system is based on mathematics, counting human beings, and organizing them as automatons. However, the human soul does not follow any rules, even if it is socialism because they are automated rules and regulations. Instead, human souls prefer life overrules.

Quote #5

In short, I maintain that all great men or even men a little out of the common, that is to say capable of giving some new word, must from their very nature be criminals—more or less, of course.

Part -III, Chapter -V

Raskolnikov speaks about his theory. He summarizes that great people rise only because of such crimes. In other words, he means that greatness sometimes forces people to kill others or be involved in crimes or become criminals to achieve greatness. According to him, every great person is more or less a criminal in nature.

Quote #6

It’s not a matter of permission or prohibition. He will suffer if he is sorry for his victim. Pain and suffering are always inevitable for a large intelligence and a deep heart. The really great men must, I think, have great sadness on earth.

Part -III, Chapter -V

Raskolnikov shares his ideas about greatness. He thinks that though great persons can kill people, they also feel sorry and suffer at heart. If a great person feels sorry, it means that he is an intelligent soul. In fact, he wants to claim that he is an intelligent person as he is mentally suffering after killing the old woman.

Quote #7

‘I did not bow down to you, I bowed down to all the suffering of humanity,’ he said wildly and walked away to the window. ‘Listen,’ he added, turning to her a minute later. ‘I said just now to an insolent man that he was not worth your little finger.”

Part -IV, Chapter -IV

Raskolnikov speaks these lines to Sonya. As Sonya is ready to sacrifice herself for her family, Raskolnikov says that he is paying tribute to this suffering and not to her. So, he rebukes her suiter that he is not worth Sonya’s finger. In other words, he wants to tell Sonya that he respects her for her sacrifice.

Quote #8

Did I murder the old woman? I murdered myself, not her! I crushed myself once for all, forever. … But it was the devil that killed that old woman, not I.

Part -V, Chapter -IV

Raskolnikov talks about his conscience that is still aware of what grave crime he has committed by killing the old woman. He seems to realize that he has killed himself and his character. However, at the same time, he blames the devil and believes it made him commit the murder.

Quote #9

I’ve so much to do of my own business and other people’s. Ah, Rodion Romanovitch,’ he added suddenly, ‘what all men need is fresh air, fresh air … more than anything!

Part -VI, Chapter -I

Rodion Romanovitch and Svidrigailov discuss the murder of the woman and likely involvement of Raskolnikov. Svidrigailov tells Rodion that although his hands are full, he has found the killer. He believes the killer must be sent to Siberia for this crime, as fresh air will lead to his redemption.

Quote #10

Suffering, too, is a good thing. Suffer! … Fling yourself straight into life, without deliberation; don’t be afraid—the flood will bear you to the bank and set you safe on your feet again. … You must fulfil the demands of justice.

Part -VI, Chapter -II

Porfiry speaks these lines to Raskolnikov to state that suffering is good for people. As suffering leads to redemption for his crime and sin. In fact, it is the demand for justice that a person should face suffering to redeem his soul.