The son of an impoverished nobleman of Lithuanian origin, Fyodor
Dostoyevsky was born in 1821 in Moscow. His father held the post of
resident doctor at a charity hospital, and the family had small living
quarters on the hospital grounds. His mother died when he was sixteen
and he entered the School of Military Engineers in St. Petersburg
where he spent four unhappy years. His father was murdered by serfs
and he had neither money nor friends. Literature was his favorite
subject; so after resigning his position as a military draftsman, he
devoted himself to writing. His years of poverty and suffering gave
him keen insight and the ability to identify with the underdog, which
resulted in his first novel Poor Folk, published in
1846. His most important works were written between 1859 and 1881, the
year of his death: The Humiliated and Wronged (1861),
Notes From the Underground (1864), Crime and
Punishment (1866), The Idiot (1868), The
Possessed (1871), A Raw Youth (1875), The
Diary of a Writer (1876-1880), and The Brothers
Here are a few quotations attributed to Fyodor Dostoyevsky:
Imagine that you are creating a fabric of human destiny with the
object of making men happy in the end... but that it was essential and
inevitable to torture to death only one tiny creature... And to found
that edifice on its unavenged tears: would you consent to be the
architect on those conditions? Tell me, and tell me the truth!
Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov
It is not possible to eat me without insisting that I sing praises
of my devourer?
Men do not accept their prophets and slay them, but they love their
martyrs and worship those whom they have tortured to death.
To live without hope is to cease to live.
To love someone means to see him as God intended him.
For a large collection of quotations, visit: