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Prison Quotes

The worst prison is not of stone. It is of a throbbing heart, outraged by an infamous life.

Henry Ward Beecher
Total votes: 35

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: 31

Fast closed with double grills And triple gates–the cell To wicked souls is hell; But to a mind that's innocent 'Tis only iron, wood and stone.

Paul Pelisson Fontanier
Total votes: 33

What restrains us from killing is partly fear of punishment, partly moral scruple, and partly what may be described as a sense of humor.

H. L. Mencken
Total votes: 47

When it comes to freedom, we are but prisoners of our own desires.

Eric Schaub
Total votes: 24

Overlook our deeds, since you know that crime was absent from our inclination.

Ovid (Publius Ovidius Naso)
Total votes: 38

Here the great art lies, to discern in what the law is to be to restraint and punishment, and in what things persuasion only is to work.

John Milton
Total votes: 25


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: 30

If you want total security, go to prison. There you’re fed, clothed, given medical care and so on. The only thing lacking…is freedom.

Dwight David Eisenhower
Total votes: 32

If we look at Houston, which is a very environmentally toxic place, we find that it has one of the highest levels of young men going to prison and also among the highest levels of illiteracy in the country.

Danny Glover
Total votes: 31

Clemency alone makes us equal to the gods.

Claudian
Total votes: 33

Intellectual despair results in neither weakness nor dreams, but in violence. It is only a matter of knowing how to give vent to one's rage; whether one only wants to wander like madmen around prisons, or whether one wants to overturn them.

Georges Bataille
Total votes: 38

The only effect of public punishment is to show the rabble how bravely it can be borne; and that every one who hath lost a toe-nail hath suffered worse.

Walter Savage Landor
Total votes: 27

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: 32

Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.

Edmund Burke
Total votes: 18

The power of punishment is to silence, not to confute.

Samuel Johnson
Total votes: 25

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

Attributed to Fyodor Dostoevsky (Unverfied)
Total votes: 33

If two people fight on the street, whose fault is it? Who is the criminal? It is the government’s responsibility because the government has not educated the people to not make mistakes. The people have inadequate, incompetent education, so they make mistakes! It is such a fraud.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
Total votes: 26

Two men look out the same prison bars; one sees mud and the other stars.

Frederick Langbridge
Total votes: 39

It becomes not a law-maker to be a law-breaker.

Bias of Priene
Total votes: 25

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

John Locke
Total votes: 19

Prosecution I have managed to avoid; but I have been arrested, charged in a police court, have refused to be bound over, and thereupon have been unconditionally released - to my great regret; for I have always wanted to know what going to prison was like.

Laurence Housman
Total votes: 39

Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.

A. R. Ammons
Total votes: 24

I am certain that nothing has done so much to destroy the juridical safeguards of individual freedom as the striving after this mirage of social justice.

Fredrich August von Hayek
Total votes: 29

Money will determine whether the accused goes to prison or walks out of the courtroom a free man.

Johnnie Cochran
Total votes: 28