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[ Also see Capital Punishment Crime Cruelty Death Devil Discipline Execution Gibbets Guillotine Guilt Hell Judgment Justice Law Mercy Pain Pardon Prison Redemption Results Retaliation Retribution Revenge Reward Scaffold Thieving Wickedness ]

Heaven is not always angry when he strikes,
  But most chastises those whom most he likes.
      - John Pomfret, To a Friend Under Affliction
         (l. 89)

But if the first Eve
  Hard doom did receive
    When only one apple had she,
      What a punishment new
        Must be found out for you,
          Who eating hath robb'd the whole tree.
      - Alexander Pope, To Lady Montague

A sincere acquaintance with ourselves teaches us humility; and from humility springs that benevolence which compassionates the transgressors we condemn, and prevents the punishments we inflict from themselves partaking of crime, in being rather the wreakings of revenge than the chastisements of virtue.
      - Jane Porter

There is no greater punishment than that of being abandoned to one's self.
      - Pasquier Quesnel

I think people would be alive today if there were a death penalty.
      - Nancy Reagan

Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.
      - Antonin Scalia

Corporeal punishment falls far more heavily than most weighty pecuniary penalty.
      - Seneca (Lucius Annaeus Seneca)

The time that precedes punishment is the severest part of it.
  [Lat., Quod antecedit tempus, maxima venturi supplicii pars est.]
      - Seneca (Lucius Annaeus Seneca),
        De Beneficiis (II, 5)

He, who has committed a fault, is to be corrected both by advice and by force, kindly and harshly, and to be made better for himself as well as for another, not without chastisement, but without passion.
  [Lat., Corrigendus est, qui peccet, et admonitione et vi, et molliter et aspere, meliorque tam sibi quam alii faciendus, non sine castigatione, sed sine ira.
      - Seneca (Lucius Annaeus Seneca), De Ira
         (I, 14)

The severest punishment a man can receive who has injured another, is to have committed the injury; and no man is more severely punished than he who is subject to the whip of his own repentance.
  [Lat., Maxima est factae injuriae paena, fecisse: nec quisquam gravius adficitur, quam qui ad supplicium poenitentiae traditur.]
      - Seneca (Lucius Annaeus Seneca), De Ira
         (III, 26)

There is no greater punishment of wickedness that that it is dissatisfied with itself and its deeds.
  [Lat., Nec ulla major poena nequitiae est, quam quod sibi et suis displicet.]
      - Seneca (Lucius Annaeus Seneca),
        Epistoloe Ad Lucilium (XLII)

An avenging God closely follows the haughty.
  [Lat., Sequitur superbos ultor a tergo deus.]
      - Seneca (Lucius Annaeus Seneca),
        Hercules Furens (385)

Fortune is less severe against those of lesser degree, and God strikes what is weak with less power.
  [Lat., Minor in parvis fortuna furit,
    Leviusque ferit leviora Deus.]
      - Seneca (Lucius Annaeus Seneca), Hippolytus
         (act IV, 1124)

Thou shalt be whipped with wire and stewed in brine,
  Smarting in ling'ring pickle.
      - William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra
         (Cleopatra at II, v)

Vex not his ghost. O, let him pass! He hates him
  That would upon the rack of this tough world
    Stretch him out longer.
      - William Shakespeare, King Lear
         (Kent at V, iii)

And shall, or some of us will smart for it.
      - William Shakespeare,
        Much Ado About Nothing (Antonio at V, i)

Thou art a traitor.
  Off with his head! Now by Saint Paul I swear
    I will not dine until I see the same.
      - William Shakespeare,
        The Tragedy of King Richard the Third
         (King Richard at III, iv)

Fie, fie, how wayward is this foolish love
  That, like a testy babe, will scratch the nurse
    And presently all humbled kiss the rod!
      - William Shakespeare,
        The Two Gentlemen of Verona
         (Julia at I, ii)

The most anxious man in a prison is the governor.
      - George Bernard Shaw

If you strike a child take care that you strike it in anger, even at the risk of maiming it for life. A blow in cold blood neither can nor should be forgiven.
      - George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman

Imprisonment is as irrevocable as death.
      - George Bernard Shaw,
        Man and Superman--Maxims for Revolutionists

It is hard, but it is excellent, to find the right knowledge of when correction is necessary and when grace doth most avail.
      - Sir Philip Sidney (Sydney)

To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
      - William Gilmore Simms

Gold must be beaten, and a child scourged.
      - Ben Sira (Syra)

There is nothynge that more dyspleaseth God
  Than from theyr children to spare the rod.
      - John Skelton, Magnyfycence (l. 1,954)

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