Fyodor Dostoevsky Quotes

To go wrong in one's own way is better than to go right in someone else's.一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821–1881), was a Russian novelist, short story writer, essayist and journalist.

His most acclaimed novels include Crime and Punishment (1866), The Idiot (1869), Demons (1872), and The Brothers Karamazov (1880).

His 1864 novella, Notes from Underground, is considered to be one of the first works of existentialist literature.

Numerous literary critics regard him as one of the greatest novelists in all of world literature, as many of his works are considered highly influential masterpieces.

Here is A selection of some of FYODOR DOSTOEVSKY most famous quotes. Dostoevsky Quotes About Life, Love & Happiness and Society, Loneliness. Dostoevsky on Intelligence



Fyodor Dostoevsky Famous Quotes and Sayings

To go wrong in one's own way is better than to go right in someone else's.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Man only likes to count his troubles; he doesn't calculate his happiness.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

What is hell? I maintain that it is the suffering of being unable to love.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Above all, don't lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I say let the world go to hell, but I should always have my tea.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I love mankind, he said, but I find to my amazement that the more I love mankind as a whole, the less I love man in particular.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

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.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

We sometimes encounter people, even perfect strangers, who begin to interest us at first sight, somehow suddenly, all at once, before a word has been spoken.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The soul is healed by being with children.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

People speak sometimes about the "bestial" cruelty of man, but that is terribly unjust and offensive to beasts, no animal could ever be so cruel as a man, so artfully, so artistically cruel.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Talking nonsense is the sole privilege mankind possesses over the other organisms. It's by talking nonsense that one gets to the truth! I talk nonsense, therefore I'm human.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

It takes something more than intelligence to act intelligently.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

But how could you live and have no story to tell?

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The mystery of human existence lies not in just staying alive, but in finding something to live for.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Much unhappiness has come into the world because of bewilderment and things left unsaid.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

To love someone means to see them as God intended them.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what people fear most.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Nothing in this world is harder than speaking the truth, nothing easier than flattery.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The world says: "You have needs 一 satisfy them. You have as much right as the rich and the mighty. Don't hesitate to satisfy your needs; indeed, expand your needs and demand more." This is the worldly doctrine of today. And they believe that this is freedom. The result for the rich is isolation and suicide, for the poor, envy and murder.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Man is a mystery. It needs to be unravelled, and if you spend your whole life unravelling it, don't say that you've wasted time. I am studying that mystery because I want to be a human being.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Right or wrong, it's very pleasant to break something from time to time.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Man is sometimes extraordinarily, passionately, in love with suffering...

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I can see the sun, but even if I cannot see the sun, I know that it exists. And to know that the sun is there - that is living.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

If you wish to glimpse inside a human soul and get to know a man, don't bother analyzing his ways of being silent, of talking, of weeping, of seeing how much he is moved by noble ideas; you will get better results if you just watch him laugh. If he laughs well, he's a good man.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The awful thing is that beauty is mysterious as well as terrible. God and the devil are fighting there and the battlefield is the heart of man.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

You can be sincere and still be stupid.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Beauty will save the world.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Don't let us forget that the causes of human actions are usually immeasurably more complex and varied than our subsequent explanations of them.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

It is not the brains that matter most, but that which guides them — the character, the heart, generous qualities, progressive ideas.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Pain and suffering are always inevitable for a large intelligence and a deep heart.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

To love is to suffer and there can be no love otherwise.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I think the devil doesn't exist, but man has created him, he has created him in his own image and likeness.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

This is my last message to you: in sorrow, seek happiness.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

It is better to be unhappy and know the worst, than to be happy in a fool's paradise.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Besides, nowadays, almost all capable people are terribly afraid of being ridiculous, and are miserable because of it.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Nothing is easier than to denounce the evildoer; nothing is more difficult than to understand him.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

If you want to be respected by others, the great thing is to respect yourself. Only by that, only by self-respect will you compel others to respect you.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Love in action is a harsh and dreadful thing compared to love in dreams.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

When reason fails, the devil helps!

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Sarcasm: the last refuge of modest and chaste-souled people when the privacy of their soul is coarsely and intrusively invaded.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The more stupid one is, the closer one is to reality. The more stupid one is, the clearer one is. Stupidity is brief and artless, while intelligence squirms and hides itself. Intelligence is unprincipled, but stupidity is honest and straightforward.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I did not bow down to you, I bowed down to all the suffering of humanity.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

My God, a moment of bliss. Why, isn't that enough for a whole lifetime?

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

If you want to overcome the whole world, overcome yourself.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

You will burn and you will burn out; you will be healed and come back again.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The cleverest of all, in my opinion, is the man who calls himself a fool at least once a month.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Killing myself was a matter of such indifference to me that I felt like waiting for a moment when it would make some difference.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

A hundred suspicions don't make a proof.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I am a dreamer. I know so little of real life that I just can't help re-living such moments as these in my dreams, for such moments are something I have very rarely experienced. I am going to dream about you the whole night, the whole week, the whole year.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

A beast can never be as cruel as a human being, so artistically, so picturesquely cruel.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I am alone, I thought, and they are everybody.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The man who has a conscience suffers whilst acknowledging his sin. That is his punishment.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

And the more I drink the more I feel it. That's why I drink too. I try to find sympathy and feeling in drink.... I drink so that I may suffer twice as much!

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The greatest happiness is to know the source of unhappiness.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Lack of originality, everywhere, all over the world, from time immemorial, has always been considered the foremost quality and the recommendation of the active, efficient and practical man.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Grown-up people do not know that a child can give exceedingly good advice even in the most difficult case.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The fear of appearances is the first symptom of impotence.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Destroy my desires, eradicate my ideals, show me something better, and I will follow you.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Power is given only to him who dares to stoop and take it ... one must have the courage to dare.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I am a fool with a heart but no brains, and you are a fool with brains but no heart; and we’re both unhappy, and we both suffer.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Man grows used to everything, the scoundrel!

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Your worst sin is that you have destroyed and betrayed yourself for nothing.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I used to imagine adventures for myself, I invented a life, so that I could at least exist somehow.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Be not forgetful of prayer. Every time you pray, if your prayer is sincere, there will be new feeling and new meaning in it, which will give you fresh courage, and you will understand that prayer is an education.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

A fool with a heart and no sense is just as unhappy as a fool with sense and no heart.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Man has it all in his hands, and it all slips through his fingers from sheer cowardice.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Only to live, to live and live! Life, whatever it may be!

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Truly great men must, I think, experience great sorrow on the earth.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I don't know how to be silent when my heart is speaking.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

There is only one thing that I dread: not to be worthy of my sufferings.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

They were like two enemies in love with one another.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

People with new ideas, people with the faintest capacity for saying something new, are extremely few in number, extraordinarily so, in fact.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Lying to ourselves is more deeply ingrained than lying to others.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Perhaps I really regard myself as an intelligent man only because throughout my entire life I've never been able to start or finish anything.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Break what must be broken, once for all, that's all, and take the suffering on oneself.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

It's life that matters, nothing but life—the process of discovering, the everlasting and perpetual process, not the discovery itself, at all.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

You see I kept asking myself then: why am I so stupid that if others are stupid—and I know they are—yet I won't be wiser?

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Forgive me... for my love - for ruining you with my love.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I swear, gentlemen, that to be too conscious is an illness - a real thorough-going illness.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

One can fall in love and still hate.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Don't be overwise; 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.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Love children especially, for they too are sinless like the angels; they live to soften and purify our hearts and, as it were, to guide us.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

It's the great mystery of human life that old grief passes gradually into quiet tender joy.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

What do you think, would not one tiny crime be wiped out by thousands of good deeds?

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Love a man, even in his sin, for that love is a likeness of the divine love, and is the summit of love on earth.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

To think too much is a disease.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Nothing has ever been more insupportable for a man and a human society than freedom.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

How can a man of consciousness have the slightest respect for himself.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

It was a wonderful night, such a night as is only possible when we are young, dear reader.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I will not and cannot believe that evil is the normal condition of mankind.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Existence alone had never been enough for him; he had always wanted more. Perhaps it was only from the force of his desires that he had regarded himself as a man to whom more was permitted than to others.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Compassion is the chief law of human existence.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

To care only for well-being seems to me positively ill-bred. Whether it’s good or bad, it is sometimes very pleasant, too, to smash things.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

But I always liked side-paths, little dark back-alleys behind the main road- there one finds adventures and surprises, and precious metal in the dirt.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

But to fall in love does not mean to love. One can fall in love and still hate.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Love life more than the meaning of it?

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Life is paradise, and we are all in paradise, but we refuse to see it.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Oh, how unbearable is a happy person sometimes!

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I've never been a coward at heart, although I've always been a coward in action

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The whole work of man really seems to consist in nothing but proving to himself every minute that he is a man and not a piano key.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Sorrow compressed my heart, and I felt I would die, and then . . . Well, then I woke up.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

An intelligent man cannot become anything seriously, and it is only the fool who becomes anything.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I almost do not exist now and I know it; God knows what lives in me in place of me.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I want to suffer so that I may love.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

If he's honest, he'll steal; if he's human, he'll murder; if he's faithful, he'll deceive.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I like revisiting, at certain times, spots where I was once happy; I like to shape the present in the image of the irretrievable past.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

But man is a fickle and disreputable creature and perhaps, like a chess-player, is interested in the process of attaining his goal rather than the goal itself.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I utter what you would not dare think.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I believe the best definition of man is the ungrateful biped.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Love is such a priceless treasure that you can buy the whole world with it, and redeem not only your own but other people's sins. Go, and do not be afraid.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Everything passes, only truth remains.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Man is a creature that can get accustomed to anything, and I think that is the best definition of him.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Of course my jokes are in poor taste, inappropriate, and confused; they reveal my lack of security. But that is because I have no respect for myself.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

In most cases, people, even wicked people, are far more naive and simple-hearted than one generally assumes. And so are we.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Compassion was the most important, perhaps the sole law of human existence.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Be the sun and all will see you.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

It is amazing what one ray of sunshine can do for a man!

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

They were renewed by love; the heart of each held infinite sources of life for the heart of the other.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

In sinning, each man sins against all, and each man is at least partly guilty for another's sin. There is no isolated sin.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The best way to keep a prisoner from escaping is to make sure he never knows he’s in prison.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

My friend, the truth is always implausible, did you know that? To make the truth more plausible, it's absolutely necessary to mix a bit of falsehood with it. People have always done so.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Reason is the slave of passion.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I punish myself for my whole life, my whole life I punish.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The prince says that the world will be saved by beauty! And I maintain that the reason he has such playful ideas is that he is in love.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I am too young and I've loved you too much.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I have so much to say to you that I am afraid I shall tell you nothing.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I'm a master of speaking silently—all my life I've spoken silently and I've lived through entire tragedies in silence.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Deprived of meaningful work, men and women lose their reason for existence; they go stark, raving mad.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Happiness does not lie in happiness, but in the achievement of it.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

To live without Hope is to Cease to live.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

I gave up caring about anything, and all the problems disappeared.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Love the animals, love the plants, love everything. If you love everything, you will perceive the divine mystery in things. Once you perceive it, you will begin to comprehend it better every day. And you will come at last to love the whole world with an all-embracing love.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Learning to love is hard and we pay dearly for it. It takes hard work and a long apprenticeship, for it is not just for a moment that we must learn to love, but forever.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Only through suffering can we find ourselves.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

The more you succeed in loving, the more you'll be convinced at the existence of God and the immortality of your soul.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

A society should be judged not by how it treats its outstanding citizens but by how it treats its criminals.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

There is no subject so old that something new cannot be said about it.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Neither man nor nation can exist without a sublime idea.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky

Each of us is responsible for everything and to every human being.

一Fyodor Dostoevsky



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