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The Brothers Karamazov

The Brothers Karamazov


by Fyodor Dostoevsky

The Brothers Karamazov Book 12, Chapter 4 Summary

Fortune Smiles on Mitya

  • Alyosha then takes the stand, and the prosecutor grills him about his brother's state of mind. Alyosha strongly insists on his belief in Dmitri's innocence and points to Smerdyakov as the real murderer. When the prosecutor asks for proof, Alyosha can only say that he can tell by the look on his brother's face that he's innocent.
  • As Fetyukovich questions Alyosha, Alyosha suddenly remembers Dmitri's unusual gesture of pointing to his chest well above his heart in a conversation they had on their last meeting before their father's murder. Alyosha realizes that Dmitri must have been pointing to the amulet with the 1,500 roubles – an important memory that might support Dmitri's contention that he had had 1,500 roubles all along.
  • Next up is Katerina. She explains that she understood Dmitri needed money when she entrusted him with the 3,000 roubles and that she viewed this as a kind of indirect loan. Then, much to Dmitri's dismay, she tells the entire court about the time when she went to borrow money from Dmitri to save her father's honor.
  • After Katerina comes Grushenka, who, in the course of her testimony, reveals that Rakitin is her cousin. This destroys Rakitin's credibility – another score for the defense.
  • Finally Ivan is called to the stand.

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