50+ Best In Cold Blood Quotes: Exclusive Selection

In Cold Blood is a non-fiction novel by American author Truman Capote, first published in 1966; it details the 1959 murders of four members of the Herbert Clutter family in the small farming community of Holcomb, Kansas. Profoundly inspirational In Cold Blood quotes will challenge the way you think, and make your life worth living.

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Famous In Cold Blood Quotes

I don’t believe in capital punishment, morally or legally. — Perry Smith

Nancy wore her dress of cherry-red velvet, her brother a bright plaid shirt; the parents were more sedately attired, Mr. Clutter in navy-blue flannel, his wife in navy-blue crepe; and—and it was this, especially, that lent the scene an awful aura—the head of each was completely encased in cotton, a swollen cocoon twice the size of an ordinary blown-up balloon, and the cotton, because it had been sprayed with a glossy substance, twinkled like Christmas-tree snow. — In Cold Blood

I’ll bet he wasn’t afraid … right up to the last he didn’t believe it would. — Mrs. Ashida

And a tough, strutty little man said, I believe in capital punishment. It’s like the Bible says—an eye for an eye. And even so we’re two pair short! — In Cold Blood

The village of Holcomb stands on the high wheat plains of western Kansas, a lonesome area that other Kansans call out there.’ . . .The land is flat, the views are awesomely extensive; horses, herds of cattle, a white cluster of grain elevators rising as gracefully as Greek temples are visible long before a traveler reaches them. — In Cold Blood

Of course, Dick was very literal-minded, very—he had no understanding of music, poetry—and yet when you got right down to it, Dick’s literalness, his pragmatic approach to every subject, was the primary reason Perry had been attracted to him, for it made Dick seem, compared to himself, so authentically tough, invulnerable, totally masculine. — In Cold Blood

When Smith attacked Mr. Clutter he was under a mental eclipse, deep inside a schizophrenic darkness. — In Cold Blood

And seeing the dog—somehow that made me feel again. — Larry Hendricks

I started drinking, and was drunk for almost a month. I neglected my business, spent more money than I earned, wrote bad checks, and in the end became a thief. For this last I was sent to the penitentiary. — In Cold Blood

This hitherto peaceful congregation of neighbors and old friends had suddenly to endure the unique experience of distrusting each other; understandably, they believed that the murderer was among themselves. — In Cold Blood

We went around to the kitchen door, and of course it wasn’t locked; the only person who locked doors around there was Mrs. Helm—the family never did. — In Cold Blood

I didn’t want to harm the man. I thought he was a very nice gentleman. Soft-spoken. I thought so right up to the moment I cut his throat. — Perry

And seeing the dog—somehow that made me feel again. I’d been too dazed, too numb, to feel the full viciousness of it. — In Cold Blood

A belief in God and the rituals surrounding that belief—church every Sunday, grace before meals, prayers before bed—were an important part of the Deweys’ existence. — In Cold Blood

Somebody must have been hiding … waiting for me to leave. — Bobby Rupp

I am, or try to be, a fairly religious [Catholic]. I wasn’t always. I used to just drift along […] I never considered death or the possibility of a life hereafter. And this is why I’m writing to you: because God made you as well as me and He loves you just as He loves me . — Perry-Dick

All the same, he was a real man. He did things, did them easily. He could make a tree fall precisely where he wished. He could skin a bear, repair a watch, build a house, bake a cake, darn a sock, or catch a trout with a bent pin and a piece of string. — In Cold Blood

It was wrong of me to hate him; I’ve got nothing but pity for him now. And you know—I believe Mrs. Clutter would feel pity, too. Being the kind of woman they say she was. — In Cold Blood

Strong character, high courage, hard work—it seemed that none of these were a determining factor in the fates of Tex John’s children. They shared a doom against which virtue was no defense. — In Cold Blood

They shared a doom against which virtue was no defense. — Barbara

She was nervous,’ she suffered little spells’—such were the sheltering expressions used by those close to her. Not that the truth concerning poor Bonnie’s afflictions’ was in the least a secret; everyone knew she had been an on-and-off psychiatric patient the last half-dozen years. — Bonnie

The head of each was completely encased in cotton … [and] twinkled like Christmas-tree snow. — In Cold Blood

The Clutters were the least likely to be murdered. — In Cold Blood

Because I never for a minute believed he meant to carry it out. — Floyd Wells

If [the killer] wasn’t him, maybe it was you. Or somebody across the street. All the neighbors are rattlesnakes. Varmints looking for a chance to slam the door in your face. It’s the same the whole world over. You know that. — In Cold Blood

[Dick] was holding the knife. I asked him for it, and he gave it to me, and I said, All right, Dick. Here goes.’ But I didn’t mean it. I meant to call his bluff, make him argue me out of it, make him admit he was a phony and a coward. See, it was something between me and Dick. I knelt down beside Mr. Clutter, and the pain of kneeling—I thought of that goddam dollar. Silver dollar. The shame. Disgust. And they’d told me never to come back to Kansas. But I didn’t realize what I’d done till I heard the sound. Like somebody drowning. Screaming under water. — Perry

Dewey was fifty-one, four years older than when he supervised the Clutter investigation. . . . The dream of settling on his farm had not come true, for his wife’s fear of living in that sort of isolation had never lessened. Instead, the Deweys had built a new house in town; they were proud of it, and proud, too, of both their sons, who were deep-voiced now and as tall as their father. The older boy was headed for college in the autumn. — In Cold Blood

Big-hearted Perry was always pestering Dick to pick up the damnedest, sorriest-looking people. — In Cold Blood

The miracle was the sudden appearance of a third hitchhiker. — In Cold Blood

Deal me out, baby,’ Dick said. I’m a normal.’ And Dick meant what he said. He thought of himself as balanced, as sane as anyone—maybe a bit smarter than the average fellow, that’s all. But Perry—there was, in Dick’s opinion, something wrong’ with Little Perry. — In Cold Blood

Or you might never go home. And—it’s important always to have with you something of your own. That’s really yours. — In Cold Blood

He did not smoke, and of course he did not drink; indeed, he had never tasted spirits, and was inclined to avoid people who had—a circumstance that did not shrink his social circle as much as might be supposed, for the center of that circle was supplied by the members of Garden City’s First Methodist Church, […] most of whom were as abstemious as Mr. Clutter could desire. — In Cold Blood

No, sir, I wouldn’t have him in the house. One look and I saw what he was. With his perfume. And his oily hair. It was clear as day where Dick had met him. — Mrs. Hickock

But that’s impossible. Can you imagine Mr. Clutter missing church? Just to sleep? — In Cold Blood

In brief, Nye learned only this: Of all the people in all the world, the Clutters were the least likely to be murdered. — In Cold Blood

There’s got to be something wrong with somebody who’d do a thing like that. — Perry Smith

This hitherto peaceful congregation of neighbors and old friends had suddenly to endure the unique experience of distrusting each other; understandably, they believed that the murderer was among themselves. — In Cold Blood

For, feeling it their duty, a Christian task, these men had volunteered to clean certain of the fourteen rooms in the main house. — Perry

Look all over the world and you won’t find friendlier people or fresher air or sweeter drinking water. […] I could go to Denver at triple the salary, but I’ve got five kids and I figure there’s no better place to raise kids than right here. — In Cold Blood

Dick became convinced that Perry was that rarity, a natural killer—absolutely sane, but conscienceless, and capable of dealing, with or without motive, the coldest-blooded deathblows. — In Cold Blood

The crime was a psychological accident, virtually an impersonal act; the victims might as well have been killed by lightning. Except for one thing: they had experienced prolonged terror, they had suffered. And Dewey could not forget their sufferings. Nonetheless, he found it possible to look at the man beside him without anger—with, rather, a measure of sympathy—for Perry Smith’s life had been no bed of roses but pitiful, an ugly and lonely progress toward one mirage or another. — In Cold Blood

For the majority of Holcomb’s population, having lived for seven weeks amid unwholesome rumors, general mistrust, and suspicion, appeared to feel disappointed at being told that the murderer was not someone among themselves. — In Cold Blood

The only sure thing is every one of them has got to go. — Dick Hickock

Yet to this day she regretted not having completed the course and received her diploma—just to prove—as she had told a friend, that I once succeeded at something. Instead, she had met and married Herb […]. — In Cold Blood

The kid and the girl. And maybe the other two. But it’s Saturday. They might have guests. Let’s count on eight, or even twelve. The only sure thing is every one of them has got to go. — In Cold Blood

It’s important always to have with you something of your own. — Bonnie Clutter

In general, a prosperous people. Farm ranchers, most of them, they are outdoor folk of very varied stock—German, Irish, Norwegian, Mexican, Japanese. — In Cold Blood

I can’t accept overnight what I’ve always denied. The truth is, you’ve done more for me than anyway what you call God ever has. Or ever will. By writing to me, by signing yourself friend’. — In Cold Blood

Only now when I think back, I think somebody must have been hiding there. Maybe down among the trees. Somebody just waiting for me to leave. — In Cold Blood

The deed is done and taking another life cannot change it. Instead, let us forgive as God would have us do. It is not right that we hold a grudge in our hearts. The doer of the act is going to find it difficult indeed to live with himself. His only peace of mind will be when he goes to God for forgiveness. Let us not stand in the way but instead give prayers that he may find his peace. — Mr. Clutter

She’d fill a tub with ice-cold water, put me in it, and hold me under till I was blue. — Perry Smith

Because I never for a minute believed he meant to carry it out. I thought it was just talk. — In Cold Blood

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