115 Facts About Fyodor Dostoevsky


Fyodor Dostoevsky's most acclaimed novels include Crime and Punishment, The Idiot, Demons, and The Brothers Karamazov.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's mother died in 1837 when he was 15, and around the same time, he left school to enter the Nikolayev Military Engineering Institute.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was sentenced to death but the sentence was commuted at the last moment.


Fyodor Dostoevsky spent four years in a Siberian prison camp, followed by six years of compulsory military service in exile.


Fyodor Dostoevsky began to travel around western Europe and developed a gambling addiction, which led to financial hardship.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's writings were widely read both within and beyond his native Russia and influenced an equally great number of later writers including Russians such as Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and Anton Chekhov, philosophers Friedrich Nietzsche and Jean-Paul Sartre, and the emergence of Existentialism and Freudianism.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's books have been translated into more than 170 languages, and served as the inspiration for many films.


The family traced its roots back to Danilo Irtishch, who was granted lands in the Pinsk region in 1509 for his services under a local prince, his progeny then taking the name "Fyodor Dostoevsky" based on a village there called Dostoievo.


In 1809, the 20-year-old Mikhail Fyodor Dostoevsky enrolled in Moscow's Imperial Medical-Surgical Academy.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was raised in the family home in the grounds of the Mariinsky Hospital for the Poor, which was in a lower class district on the edges of Moscow.


Fyodor Dostoevsky encountered the patients, who were at the lower end of the Russian social scale, when playing in the hospital gardens.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's parents introduced him to a wide range of literature, including Russian writers Karamzin, Pushkin and Derzhavin; Gothic fiction such as the works from writer Ann Radcliffe; romantic works by Schiller and Goethe; heroic tales by Miguel de Cervantes and Walter Scott; and Homer's epics.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was greatly influenced by the work of Nikolai Gogol.


An incident involving a family servant, or serf, in the estate in Darovoye, is described in "The Peasant Marey": when the young Fyodor Dostoevsky imagines hearing a wolf in the forest, Marey, who is working nearby, comforts him.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was described as a pale, introverted dreamer and an over-excitable romantic.


Fyodor Dostoevsky felt out of place among his aristocratic classmates at the Moscow school, and the experience was later reflected in some of his works, notably The Adolescent.


Fyodor Dostoevsky entered the academy in January 1838, but only with the help of family members.


Fyodor Dostoevsky disliked the academy, primarily because of his lack of interest in science, mathematics, and military engineering and his preference for drawing and architecture.


Fyodor Dostoevsky moved clumsily and jerkily; his uniform hung awkwardly on him; and his knapsack, shako and rifle all looked like some sort of fetter he had been forced to wear for a time and which lay heavily on him.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's father's official cause of death was an apoplectic stroke, but a neighbour, Pavel Khotiaintsev, accused the father's serfs of murder.


Fyodor Dostoevsky visited Mikhail in Reval and frequently attended concerts, operas, plays and ballets.


On 12 August 1843 Fyodor Dostoevsky took a job as a lieutenant engineer and lived with Adolph Totleben in an apartment owned by Dr Rizenkampf, a friend of Mikhail.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's first completed literary work, a translation of Honore de Balzac's novel Eugenie Grandet, was published in June and July 1843 in the 6th and 7th volumes of the journal Repertoire and Pantheon, followed by several other translations.


Fyodor Dostoevsky completed his first novel, Poor Folk, in May 1845.


Fyodor Dostoevsky felt that his military career would endanger his flourishing literary career, so he wrote a letter asking to resign his post.


Around the same time, Fyodor Dostoevsky discovered socialism through the writings of French thinkers Fourier, Cabet, Proudhon and Saint-Simon.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was attracted to its logic, its sense of justice and its preoccupation with the destitute and the disadvantaged.


Fyodor Dostoevsky used the circle's library on Saturdays and Sundays and occasionally participated in their discussions on freedom from censorship and the abolition of serfdom.


Fyodor Dostoevsky himself became a member of this society, was aware of its conspiratorial aims, and actively participated, although he harboured significant doubts about their actions and intentions.


In 1849, the first parts of Netochka Nezvanova, a novel Fyodor Dostoevsky had been planning since 1846, were published in Notes of the Fatherland, but his banishment ended the project.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was accused of reading works by Belinsky, including the banned Letter to Gogol, and of circulating copies of these and other works.


Fyodor Dostoevsky responded to these charges by declaring that he had read the essays only "as a literary monument, neither more nor less"; he spoke of "personality and human egoism" rather than of politics.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was the third in the second row; next to him stood Pleshcheyev and Durov.


Fyodor Dostoevsky later described the experience of what he believed to be the last moments of his life in his novel The Idiot.


Fyodor Dostoevsky served four years of exile with hard labour at a katorga prison camp in Omsk, Siberia, followed by a term of compulsory military service.


Eleven days later, Fyodor Dostoevsky reached Omsk together with just one other member of the Petrashevsky Circle, the writer Sergei Durov.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was only permitted to read his New Testament Bible.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was occasionally sent to the military hospital, where he read newspapers and Dickens novels.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was respected by most of the other prisoners, but despised by some Polish political prisoners because of his Russian nationalism and anti-Polish sentiments.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was a little over average height and looked at me intensely with his sharp, grey-blue eyes.


In Semipalatinsk, Fyodor Dostoevsky tutored several schoolchildren and came into contact with upper-class families, including that of Lieutenant-Colonel Belikhov, who used to invite him to read passages from newspapers and magazines.


In 1856, Fyodor Dostoevsky sent a letter through Wrangel to General Eduard Totleben, apologising for his activity in several utopian circles.


Fyodor Dostoevsky travelled to western Europe for the first time on 7 June 1862, visiting Cologne, Berlin, Dresden, Wiesbaden, Belgium, and Paris.


Fyodor Dostoevsky travelled with Nikolay Strakhov through Switzerland and several North Italian cities, including Turin, Livorno, and Florence.


Fyodor Dostoevsky recorded his impressions of those trips in the essay "Winter Notes on Summer Impressions", in which he criticised capitalism, social modernisation, materialism, Catholicism and Protestantism.


From August to October 1863, Fyodor Dostoevsky made another trip to western Europe.


Fyodor Dostoevsky met his second love, Polina Suslova, in Paris and lost nearly all his money gambling in Wiesbaden and Baden-Baden.


In 1864 his wife Maria and his brother Mikhail died, and Fyodor Dostoevsky became the lone parent of his stepson Pasha and the sole supporter of his brother's family.


Fyodor Dostoevsky contacted stenographer Pavel Olkhin from Saint Petersburg, who recommended his pupil, the twenty-year-old Anna Grigoryevna Snitkina.


Fyodor Dostoevsky remarked that Dostoevsky was of average height but always tried to carry himself erect.


On 15 February 1867 Fyodor Dostoevsky married Snitkina in Trinity Cathedral, Saint Petersburg.


In September 1867, Fyodor Dostoevsky began work on The Idiot, and after a prolonged planning process that bore little resemblance to the published novel, he eventually managed to write the first 100 pages in only 23 days; the serialisation began in The Russian Messenger in January 1868.


The grave was later dissolved but in 1986 the International Fyodor Dostoevsky Society donated a commemorative plaque.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's work was delayed when Anna's sister Maria Svatkovskaya died on 1 May 1872, from either typhus or malaria, and Anna developed an abscess on her throat.


Demons was finished on 26 November and released in January 1873 by the "Fyodor Dostoevsky Publishing Company", which was founded by Fyodor Dostoevsky and his wife.


In March 1874, Fyodor Dostoevsky left The Citizen because of the stressful work and interference from the Russian bureaucracy.


Fyodor Dostoevsky offered to sell a new novel he had not yet begun to write to The Russian Messenger, but the magazine refused.


Fyodor Dostoevsky finished The Adolescent at the end of 1875, although passages of it had been serialised in Notes of the Fatherland since January.


Fyodor Dostoevsky received more letters from readers than ever before, and people of all ages and occupations visited him.


Fyodor Dostoevsky visited Ems for the third time and was told that he might live for another 15 years if he moved to a healthier climate.


When he returned to Russia, Tsar Alexander II ordered Fyodor Dostoevsky to visit his palace to present the Diary to him, and he asked him to educate his sons, Sergey and Paul.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was a frequent guest in several salons in Saint Petersburg and met many famous people, including Countess Sophia Tolstaya, Yakov Polonsky, Sergei Witte, Alexey Suvorin, Anton Rubinstein and Ilya Repin.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's health declined further, and in March 1877 he had four epileptic seizures.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was appointed an honorary member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, from which he received an honorary certificate in February 1879.


Fyodor Dostoevsky made his fourth and final visit to Ems in early August 1879.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was diagnosed with early-stage pulmonary emphysema, which his doctor believed could be successfully managed, but not cured.


On 3 February 1880 Fyodor Dostoevsky was elected vice-president of the Slavic Benevolent Society, and he was invited to speak at the unveiling of the Pushkin memorial in Moscow.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's speech was met with thunderous applause, and even his long-time rival Turgenev embraced him.


Fyodor Dostoevsky makes a sermon like a pastor; it is very deep, sincere, and we understand that he wants to impress the emotions of his listeners.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was interred in the Tikhvin Cemetery at the Alexander Nevsky Convent, near his favourite poets, Nikolay Karamzin and Vasily Zhukovsky.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's tombstone is inscribed with lines from the New Testament:.


Fyodor Dostoevsky had his first known affair with Avdotya Yakovlevna, whom he met in the Panayev circle in the early 1840s.


Fyodor Dostoevsky described her as educated, interested in literature, and a femme fatale.


Fyodor Dostoevsky admitted later that he was uncertain about their relationship.


Fyodor Dostoevsky did not love her either, but they were probably good friends.


Fyodor Dostoevsky wrote that he "became very attracted to me".


Fyodor Dostoevsky described it as a mere "gentleman's rule" and believed that "a constitution would simply enslave the people".


Fyodor Dostoevsky advocated social change instead, for example removal of the feudal system and a weakening of the divisions between the peasantry and the affluent classes.


Fyodor Dostoevsky asserted that the traditional concept of Christianity should be recovered.


Fyodor Dostoevsky distinguished three "enormous world ideas" prevalent in his time: Roman Catholicism, Protestantism and Orthodoxy.


Fyodor Dostoevsky claimed that Catholicism had continued the tradition of Imperial Rome and had thus become anti-Christian and proto-socialist, inasmuch as the Church's interest in political and mundane affairs led it to abandon the idea of Christ.


For Fyodor Dostoevsky, socialism was "the latest incarnation of the Catholic idea" and its "natural ally".


Fyodor Dostoevsky found Protestantism self-contradictory and claimed that it would ultimately lose power and spirituality.


Fyodor Dostoevsky deemed Orthodoxy to be the ideal form of Christianity.


Fyodor Dostoevsky supported private property and business rights, and did not agree with many criticisms of the free market from the socialist utopians of his time.


Fyodor Dostoevsky wanted the Muslim Ottoman Empire eliminated and the Christian Byzantine Empire restored, and he hoped for the liberation of Balkan Slavs and their unification with the Russian Empire.


Many characters in Fyodor Dostoevsky's works, including Jews, have been described as displaying negative stereotypes.


Fyodor Dostoevsky held to a Pan Slavic ideology that was conditioned by the Ottoman occupations of Eastern Europe.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was an Orthodox Christian who was raised in a religious family and knew the Gospel from a very young age.


Fyodor Dostoevsky was influenced by the Russian translation of Johannes Hubner's One Hundred and Four Sacred Stories from the Old and New Testaments Selected for Children.


Fyodor Dostoevsky attended Sunday liturgies from an early age and took part in annual pilgrimages to the St Sergius Trinity Monastery.


In Semipalatinsk, Fyodor Dostoevsky revived his faith by looking frequently at the stars.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's canon includes novels, novellas, novelettes, short stories, essays, pamphlets, limericks, epigrams and poems.


Fyodor Dostoevsky wrote more than 700 letters, a dozen of which are lost.


Fyodor Dostoevsky expressed religious, psychological, and philosophical ideas in his writings.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's works explore such themes as suicide, poverty, human manipulation, and morality.


An important stylistic element in Fyodor Dostoevsky's writing is polyphony, the simultaneous presence of multiple narrative voices and perspectives.


Fyodor Dostoevsky is regarded as one of the greatest and most influential novelists of the Golden Age of Russian literature.


Bakhtin argued that Fyodor Dostoevsky's use of Polyphony was a major advancement in the development of the novel as a genre.


In 1956 an olive-green postage stamp dedicated to Fyodor Dostoevsky was released in the Soviet Union, with a print run of 1,000 copies.


An Eagle Award-winning TV series directed by Vladimir Khotinenko about Fyodor Dostoevsky's life was screened in 2011.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's style was deemed "prolix, repetitious and lacking in polish, balance, restraint and good taste".


Fyodor Dostoevsky's books have been translated into more than 170 languages.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's flowing and easy translations helped popularise Dostoevsky's novels in anglophone countries, and Bakhtin's Problems of Dostoevsky's Creative Art provided further understanding of his style.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's works were interpreted in film and on stage in many different countries.


Fyodor Dostoevsky did not refuse permission, but he advised against it, as he believed that "each art corresponds to a series of poetic thoughts, so that one idea cannot be expressed in another non-corresponding form".


Fyodor Dostoevsky thought that just one episode should be dramatised, or an idea should be taken and incorporated into a separate plot.


Fyodor Dostoevsky sends her to a manor somewhere on a steppe, while Makar alleviates his misery and pain with alcohol.


Fyodor Dostoevsky describes himself as vicious, squalid and ugly; the chief focuses of his polemic are the "modern human" and his vision of the world, which he attacks severely and cynically, and towards which he develops aggression and vengefulness.


Fyodor Dostoevsky tells of meeting old school friends, who are in secure positions and treat him with condescension.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's aggression turns inward on to himself and he tries to humiliate himself further.


Fyodor Dostoevsky added a short commentary saying that although the storyline and characters are fictional, such things were inevitable in contemporary society.


Fyodor Dostoevsky's alienated existence from the mainstream influenced modernist literature.


Strakhov remarked that "Only Crime and Punishment was read in 1866" and that Fyodor Dostoevsky had managed to portray a Russian person aptly and realistically.


Fyodor Dostoevsky warns the readers against a terrible revelation in the future, referring to the Donation of Pepin around 750 and the Spanish Inquisition in the 16th century, which in his view corrupted true Christianity.