Part 6, Chapter 4 Summary

Years ago, Svidrigailov was in debtors' prison for a gambling debt he could not possibly pay, when Marfa Petrovna found him and paid his debt. She was a sensible, honest woman, though completely uneducated; she was also much older than Svidrigailov. In his “swinishness,” Svidrigailov warned this honest and jealous woman that he would not be able to remain faithful to her, and she somehow accepted that brutal honesty as an assurance that he would never deceive her. After many tearful discussions, the two of them entered into a contract in which Svidrigailov had license to pursue other women with her tacit permission, but he was to reveal to her any “great passion” that might happen.

Marfa Petrovna never guessed...

(The entire section is 588 words.)