The Idiot




Brasch PG3326 I3 1955


Harmondsworth, Middlesex: Penguin


The works of Charles Dickens were translated into Russian from the 1840s onwards. Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881) first encountered Dickens in Russian and French translations, and managed to read the novels while in exile in Siberia (1850-54). Dostoevsky – who called himself ‘Mr Micawber’ – may have met Dickens while visiting London in 1862. He certainly admired the English writer for his realism, characterisation and psychological insights, and comparisons have been made, for example, the similarities of character traits between John Harmon in Our Mutual Friend and Prince Myshkin in The Idiot. While there is much of Dickens in Dostoevsky, the influence is perhaps more pervasive: ‘the mark of Dickens is everywhere in Russian fiction’ (Lary).


Cabinet 18 The Idiot.jpg


Fyodor Dostoyevsky , “The Idiot,” | OUR Heritage, accessed September 24, 2023,