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Prison Quotes

If it's near dinner-time, the foreman takes out his watch when the jury has retired, and says: "Dear me, gentlemen, ten minutes to five, I declare! I dine at five, gentlemen." "So do I," says everybody else, except two men who ought to have dined at three and seem more than half disposed to stand out in consequence. The foreman smiles, and puts up his watch:--"Well, gentlemen, what do we say, plaintiff or defendant, gentlemen?

Charles Dickens
Total votes: 33

When the Nazis came for the communists, I remained silent; I was not a communist. When they locked up the social democrats, I remained silent; I was not a social democrat. When they came for the trade unionists, I did not speak out; I was not a trade unionist. When they came for me, there was no one left to speak out.

Reverend Martin Niemoeller
Total votes: 44

Liberty is rendered even more precious by the recollection of servitude.

Marcus Tullius Cicero
Total votes: 40

Three hundred years ago a prisoner condemned to the Tower of London carved on the wall of his cell this sentiment to keep up his spirits during his long imprisonment: “It is not adversity that kills, but the impatience with which we bear adversity.”

Father James Keller
Total votes: 46


Whatever is worthy to be loved for anything is worthy of preservation. A wise and dispassionate legislator, if any such should ever arise among men, will not condemn to death him who has done or is likely to do more service than injury to society. Blocks and gibbets are the nearest objects with legislators, and their business is never with hopes or with virtues.

Walter Savage Landor
Total votes: 57

They took away my money, my family, and my security. Why couldn't they destroy my ideas? We will question them in court tomorrow as we trigger The Revolution of all revolutions!

Jordan Couch
Total votes: 46

I have paid no poll-tax for six years. I was put into a jail once on this account, for one night; and, as I stood considering the walls of solid stone, I could not help being struck with the foolishness of that institution which treated me as if I were mere flesh and blood and bones, to be locked up...I saw that, if there was a wall of stone between me and my townsmen, there was a still more difficult one to climb or break through, before they could get to be as free as I was.

Henry David Thoreau
Total votes: 37

No written law has been more binding than unwritten custom supported by popular opinion.

Carrie Chapman Catt
Total votes: 44

In my country we go to prison first and then become President.

Nelson Mandela
Total votes: 44

Hanging was the worst use a man could be put to.

Sir Henry Wotton
Total votes: 71

Every crime has, in the moment of its perpetration, Its own avenging angel--dark misgiving, An ominous sinking at the inmost heart.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Total votes: 41

The only real prison is fear, and the only real freedom is freedom from fear.

Aung San Suu Kyi
Total votes: 59

I was put into jail as I was going to the shoemaker's to get a shoe which was mended. When I was let out the next morning, I proceeded to finish my errand, and, having put on my mended shoe, joined a huckleberry party, who were impatient to put themselves under my conduct; and in half an hour -- for the horse was soon tackled -- was in the midst of a huckleberry field, on one of our highest hills, two miles off, and then the State was nowhere to be seen.

Henry David Thoreau
Total votes: 54

I don't like jail, they got the wrong kind of bars in there.

Charles Bukowski
Total votes: 43

Any punishment that does not correct, that can merely rouse rebellion in whoever has to endure it, is a piece of gratuitous infamy which makes those who impose it more guilty in the eyes of humanity, good sense and reason, nay a hundred times more guilty than the victim on whom the punishment is inflicted.

Marquis de Sade
Total votes: 39

The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.

David Herbert Lawrence
Total votes: 37

No obligation to justice does force a man to be cruel, or to use the sharpest sentence.

Jeremy Taylor
Total votes: 87

The English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.

Oliver Goldsmith
Total votes: 38

Man is condemned to be free.

Jean-Paul Sartre
Total votes: 65

There are dreadful punishments enacted against thieves; but it were much better to make such good provisions, by which every man might be put in a method how to live, and so to be preserved from the fatal necessity of stealing and dying for it.

Thomas Moore
Total votes: 100

A Sunday school is a prison in which children do penance for the evil conscience of their parents.

H. L. Mencken
You voted 2. Total votes: 45

Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.

George Bernard Shaw
Total votes: 51

Nor cell, nor chain, nor dungeon speaks to the murderer like the voice of solitude.

Charles Robert Maturin
You voted 5. Total votes: 42

I have been studying how I may compare this prison where I live unto the world; Shut up in the prison of their own consciences.

James Usher
Total votes: 68

One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.

Oscar Wilde
Total votes: 42