Great Throughts Treasury

This site is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Alan William Smolowe who gave birth to the creation of this database.


"Disgrace is not in the punishment, but in the crime." -

"Heaven will permit no man to secure happiness by crime." -

"To err is human; but contrition felt for the crime distinguishes the virtuous from the wicked." -

"War is a crime which involves all others crimes." -

"Respectable sin is, in principle, the mother of all basest crime. Follow it to the bitter end, and there is ignominy as well as guilt eternal." - Horace Bushnell

"He who allows oppression shares the crime." - Erasmus Darwin

"One crime is everything; two nothing." - Madame Deluzy, Luzy Dorothee

"Everyone is really responsible to all men for all men and for everything... Remember particularly that you cannot be a judge of anyone. For no one can judge a criminal, until he recognizes that he is just such a criminal as the man standing before him, and that he perhaps is more than all men to blame for the crime. When he understands that, he will be able to be a judge... But there are other things which a man is afraid to tell even to himself, and every decent man has a number of such things stored away in his mind." - Fyodor Dostoevsky, fully Fyodor Mikhaylovich Dostoevsky or Feodor Mikhailovich Dostoevski

"To murder character is as truly a crime as to murder the body: the tongue of the slanderer is brother to the dagger of the assassin." - Tyron Edwards

"Men are not blamed for such actions as they perform ignorantly and casually, whatever may be the consequences. Why? but because the principles of these actions are only momentary, and terminate in them alone. Men are less blamed for such actions as they perform hastily and unpremeditatedly than for such as proceed from deliberation. For what reason? but because a hasty temper, though a constant cause or principle in the mind, operates only by intervals, and infects not the whole character. Again, repentance wipes off every crime, if attended with a reformation of life and manners. How is this to be accounted for? but by asserting that actions render a person criminal merely a they are proofs of criminal principles in the mind." - David Hume

"Health is so necessary to all the duties as well as pleasures of life that the crime of squandering it is equal to the folly." -

"I know not any crime so great that a man could contrive to commit as poisoning the sources of eternal truth." -

"If misery be the effect of virtue, it; ought to be reverenced; if of ill-fortune, to be pitied; and of vice, not to be insulted, because it is perhaps itself a punishment adequate to the crime by which it was produced." -

"He who within his breast meditates a crime has all the guilt of the deed." - Juvenal, fully Decimus Junius Juvenalis NULL

"No crime (evil) is founded upon reason." -

"Not failure, but low aim, is crime." - James Russell Lowell

"Moral contempt is a far greater indignity and insult than any kind of crime." -

"A sincere acquaintance with ourselves teaches us humility; and from humility springs that benevolence which compassionates the transgressors we condemn, and prevents the punishments we inflict from themselves partaking of crime, in being rather the wreaking of revenge than the chastisements of virtue." - Jane Porter

"One murder makes a villain; millions, a hero; numbers sanctify the crime." - Beilby Porteus

"He who helps the guilty shares the crime." - Publius Syrus

"Popularity is a crime from the moment it is sought; it is only a virtue when men have it whether they will or not." - George Savile, fully Sir George Savile, 1st Marquis of Halifax

"Gossip is more hideous than capital crime." - Ishmael School

"Crime can never go unpunished, since the punishment of crime lies in the crime itself." -

"He who does not prevent a crime when he can, encourages it." -

"No crime has been without a precedent." -

"The hypocrite's crime is that he bears false witness against himself. What makes it so plausible to assume that hypocrisy is the vice of vices is that integrity can indeed exist under the cover of all vices except this one." - Lionel Trilling

"Wit implies hatred or contempt of folly and crime, produces its effects by brisk shocks of surprise, uses the whip of scorpions and the branding iron, stabs, stings, pinches, tortures, goads, teases, corrodes, undermines." - Edwin Percy Whipple

"We should never victimize as we do, children whose only crime is color." -

"What is irritating about love is that it is a crime that requires an accomplice." - Charles Pierre Baudelaire

"Motives are better than actions. Men drift into crime. Of evil they do more than they contemplate, and of good they contemplate more than they do." - Christian Nestell Bovee

"We should not so much esteem our poverty as a misfortune, were it not that the world treats it so much as a crime." - Christian Nestell Bovee

"The teaching of any science, for purposes of liberal education, without linking it with social progress and teaching its social significance, is a crime against the student mind. It is like teaching a child how to pronounce words but now what they mean." - Vernon Carter

"To say that every crime brings its own punishment is by way of being a platitude, and yet in my opinion nothing can be truer." - Agatha Christie, fully Dame Agatha Miller Christie

"They believe their words. Everybody shows a respectful deference to certain sounds that he and his fellows can make. But about feelings people really know nothing. We talk with indignation or enthusiasm; we talk about oppression, cruelty, crime, devotion, self-sacrifice, virtue, and we know very little beyond the words." - Joseph Conrad, born Teodor Josef Konrad Korzeniowski

"Grand and manifold as were its phases, there is yet no difficulty in understanding the character of Washington. He was no Veiled Prophet. He never acted a part. Simple, natural, and unaffected, his life lies before us - a fair and open manuscript. He disdained the arts which wrap power in mystery in order to magnify it. He practiced the profound diplomacy of truthful speech - the consummate tact of direct attention. Looking ever to the All-Wise Disposer of events, he relied on that Providence which helps men by giving them high hearts and hopes to help themselves with the means which their Creator has put at their service. There was no infirmity in his conduct over which charity must fling its veil; no taint of selfishness from which purity averts her gaze; no dark recess of intrigue that must be lit up with colored panegyric; no subterranean passage to be trod in trembling, lest there be stirred the ghost of a buried crime." - John W. Daniel, fully John Warwick Daniel

"Remember particularly that you cannot be a judge of anyone. For no one can judge a criminal until he recognizes that he is just such a criminal as the man standing before him, and that he perhaps is more than all men to blame for the crime." - Fyodor Dostoevsky, fully Fyodor Mikhaylovich Dostoevsky or Feodor Mikhailovich Dostoevski

"Capital punishment is as fundamentally wrong as a cure for crime as charity is wrong as a cure for poverty." - Henry Ford

"Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime. Ask the infantry and ask the dead." - Ernest Hemingway, fully Ernest Miller Hemingway

"Leisure is the mother of philosophy... The source of every crime , is some defect of the understanding; or some error in reasoning; or some sudden force of the passions... And the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short." - Thomas Hobbes

"It’s universally wrong to steal from your neighbor, but once you get the one-to-one level, and pit the individual against the multinational conglomerate, the federal bureaucracy, the modern plantation of agro-business, or the utility company, it becomes strictly a value judgment to decide exactly who is stealing from whom. One person’s crime is another person’s profit. Capitalism is license to steal; the government simply regulates who steals and how much." - Abbie Hoffman, fully Abbot Howard "Abbie" Hoffman

"Not failure, but low aim, is a crime." - Ernest Shurtleff Holmes

"If suicide be supposed a crime, it is only cowardice can impel us to it. If it be no crime, both prudence and courage should engage us to rid ourselves at once of existence when it becomes a burden." - David Hume

"Intemperance is the epitome of every crime, the cause of every kind of misery." -

"Health is so necessary to all the duties, as well as pleasures of life, that the crime of squandering it is equal to the folly." -

"To be mistaken is a misfortune to be pitied; but to know the truth and not to conform one's actions to it is a crime which Heaven and Earth condemn." - Guiseppe Mazzini

"Crime rarely fails to make the headlines. How one wishes there were some way of featuring and dramatizing good living and high thinking." - Robert J. McCracken, D.D.

"He who overlooks one crime invites the commission of another." - Publius Syrus

"Small crimes always precede great crimes. Whoever has been able to transgress the limits set by law may afterwards violate the most sacred rights; crime, like virtue, has its degrees, and never have we seen timid innocence pass suddenly to extreme licentiousness." - Jean Racine, baptismal name Jean-Baptiste Racine

"Whatever of goodness emanates from the soul, gathers its soft halo in the eyes; an if the heart be a lurking-place of crime, the eyes are sure to betray the secret. A beautiful eye makes silence eloquent, a kind eye makes contradiction assent, an enraged eye makes beauty a deformity; so you see, forsooth, the little organ plays no inconsiderable, if not a dominant, part." - Frederic Saunders