Name That Character

29 Aug

Here’s a fun game for you!   Guess which character is referred to by the following direct quotes (without referring back to your notes or novel).   First one to guess it wins…bragging rights.

This character:

…was an anaemic, scrofulous little man.

…had almost always something wrong with his eyes.

…was conceited in speech.

…was rather stupid.

…was one of the numerous and varied legion of dullards, of half-animate abortions, conceited, half-educated coxcombs, who attach themselves to the idea most in fashion only to vulgarise it and who caricature every cause they serve, however sincerely.


With the detailed, rather vitriolic descriptions, I bet Dostoyevsky knew (and disliked) someone just like this.   So, do you recall the character?



Posted by on August 29, 2012 in Crime and Punishment


9 responses to “Name That Character

  1. Adriana @ Classical Quest

    August 29, 2012 at 9:08 pm

    I can’t believe it — I’m completely stumped! I’ve read your post three times and I’m completely drawing a blank!!!

  2. Ruth Lopez

    August 29, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    Andrei Semionovich. The word “abortion” stuck out b/c I just read that description two pages ago, and I thought what a strange word to use to describe a man.

  3. Jeannette

    August 29, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    Yay Ruth! You got it! 🙂 And, boy do you read quickly, by the way.

  4. Sandy

    August 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm

    Gulp, that was humbling. I didn’t recognize the quote at all, and even when I read Ruth’s answer, I thought, “Who the heck was Andrei Semionovich?!” But sure enough, he was on my list of characters, from part of Part 5, Ch. 1 — the young roommate and former ward of Pyotr Petrovich. I have a different translation, though — the copy pictured on the right side of this website. Here’s the way it is translated in my version:
    “He was one of that numerous and diverse legion of vulgarians, feeble miscreates, half-taught petty tyrants who make a point of instantly latching on to the most fashionable current idea, only to vulgarize it at once, to make an instant caricature of everything they themselves serve, sometimes quite sincerely.”
    Can we play this game again?! : ) Even though I bombed out this time, I’d love to try another challenge.

  5. Jeannette

    August 30, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    I sort of forgot about the different translations, Sandy. Yours does sound quite a bit different – same idea, but very different words. Which version of that quote do you like better? And yes, I think we should do it again!

  6. Christine

    August 31, 2012 at 7:34 am

    I remembered Andrei for two reasons. 1. I had to look up scrofulous. 2. His eye thing concerned me. You know how I feel about eye illnesses. Just the possibility of pink eye makes me shudder.

    • Christine

      August 31, 2012 at 7:35 am

      Oh, and I agree with Sandy. Let’s play again. It’s a good review for my tired brain that so quickly forgets the character names now that I’m not in the book daily.


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