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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: 8

The worst of prison life, he thought, was not being able to close his door.

Stendhal (pseudonym Henri Beyle)
Total votes: 10

He was a first-time nonviolent possible offender, ... And under the mandatory minimums, he was put in prison for 15 years. Not only does the punishment not fit the crime, but the mandatory minimums don't give judges any discretion to look at the background of the case, to read into the specifics of the case. I don't know a judge who really is in favor of the mandatory minimums.

Carly Simon
Total votes: 10

The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.

Mazo de la Roche
Total votes: 13

Let us remember that justice must be observed even to the lowest.

Cicero (Marcus Tullius Cicero)
Total votes: 19

Clemency alone makes us equal to the gods.

Claudian
Total votes: 13

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: 13

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: 7

Pardon is the virtue of victory.

Giuseppe Mazzini
Total votes: 12

In prisons, those things withheld from and denied to the prisoner become precisely what he wants most of all.

Eldridge Cleaver
Total votes: 12

If punishment reaches not the mind and makes not the will supple, it hardens the offender.

John Locke
Total votes: 6

I wrote a million words in the first year, and I could never have done that outside of prison.

Jeffrey Archer
Total votes: 11

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

Carrie Chapman Catt
Total votes: 14

Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.

Antonin Scalia
Total votes: 12

To seek the redress of grievances by going to law, is like sheep running for shelter to a bramble bush.

Lewis W. Dilwyn
Total votes: 13

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

Charles Bukowski
Total votes: 19

Some laws of state aimed at curbing crime are even more criminal.

Friedrich Engels
Total votes: 15

Distrust all in whom the impulse to punish is powerful.

Friedrich Nietzsche
Total votes: 19

Well, I don't think prisons are the answer to everything, obviously.

Judge Mills Lane
Total votes: 12

Vices are not crimes.

Lysander Spooner
Total votes: 11

Nor stony tower, nor walls of beaten brass, Nor airless dungeon, nor strong links of iron, Can be retentive to the strength of spirit; But life, being weary of these worldly bars, Never lacks power to dismiss itself.

William Shakespeare
Total votes: 12

In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.

Geoffrey Fisher
Total votes: 15

So justice while she winks at crimes, Stumbles on innocence sometimes.

Samuel Butler
Total votes: 12

Fear can be like a prison. It is, however, a self made prison. Many are imprisoned by fear. No one else can liberate them from this prison. Others may inspire them but they must liberate themselves.

Mr. Prophet
Total votes: 19


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: 13