The Brothers Karamazov

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Before You Begin

Before you begin, you’ll want to note that the Russian language permits several diminutive forms of proper names. For example, a name like Sergei will also appear as Serioga, Seriozhenka, Serge, and so on. Readers unfamiliar with this custom will sometimes have difficulty figuring out who is who in Brothers Karamazov.

Accordingly, we supply this list of alternate names for the novel’s main characters.

The Brothers

Dmitri is also referred to as Mitya and Mitka.  Ivan is also Vanya.
Alexei is also Alyosha.

The Women

Grushenka is also Grusha. Her full name is Agrafena Alexandrovna.
Katya’s full name is Katerina Ivanovna.
Lize is also Liza.

The Boys

Ilyusha is also referred to as Ilyushka and Ilyushechka.
Kolya’s first name is Nikolai. He is also commonly referred to by his last name, Krasotkin.


Rakitin is also referred to as Rakitka. Because his first name is Mikhail, he is also called Misha.