Oscar Wilde Quotes

Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone elses opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.

I think that God in creating Man somewhat overestimated his ability.

I am not young enough to know everything.

Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.

Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.

Biography lends to death a new terror.

America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between.

A man can be happy with any woman as long as he does not love her.

Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.

A little sincerity is a dangerous thing, and a great deal of it is absolutely fatal.

Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious.

Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.

The old believe everything, the middle-aged suspect everything, and the young know everything.

The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.

There are only two kinds of people who are really fascinating: people who know absolutely everything, and people who know absolutely nothing.

We live in an age when unnecessary things are our only necessities.

Whenever people agree with me I always feel I must be wrong.

I can resist anything but temptation.

We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.

Only the shallow know themselves.

Vile deeds like poison weeds bloom well in prison air, it is only what is good in man, that wastes and withers there.

A man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies.

The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it.

When a woman marries again, it is because she detested her first husband. When a man marries again, it is because he adored his first wife. Women try their luck; men risk theirs.

Anybody can sympathise with the sufferings of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathise with a friend's success.

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.

Oscar Wilde Biography

Oscar Wilde was born on October 16, 1854. He was an Irish author and poet. He became one of London's most famous playwrights. He was born in Dublin, Ireland. His father was Sir William Wilde and his mother was Jane Francesca Wilde. Jane wrote poetry for the Young Irelanders and was an Irish nationalist. She read her poetry to her young sons and they avidly paid attention. His father was a philanthropist and was knighted for his services.

Wilde was taught at home by his French and German governess until he attended Portora Royal School in in Enniskillen, County Fermanagh. He then attended Trinity College in Dublin as he was awarded a royal scholarship. He studied the classics. He went on to attend Magdalen College, Oxford. This is where he was questioning his Protestant upbringing and seriously considering converting to Catholicism. He met with the clergy many times and was even granted an audience with Pope Pius IX in 1877. Wilde ultimately became an atheist. He was a radical of his times. He wore his hair long, disregarded "manly" sports, and decorated with peacock feathers and flowers, especially lilies. After he graduated from Oxford, he inquired about classics positions. He eventually sold his fathers houses and went to London to set himself up as a bachelor. He spent the next six years traveling in London, Paris and the United States.

During his years at Trinity College, he had published his poems in magazines. It wasn't until 1881 where his poems were published in an anthology. It sold out in the first printing at 750 copies.

In 1881, he met Constance Lloyd. They married on May 24, 1884. Their household was expected to be extravagant and modern. They had two children: Cyril and Vyvyan.

Wilde became the editor for The Lady's World magazine, mainly because he now had a family to support. He displayed his name on the cover and renamed it The Woman's World. He raised its level of social and political awareness by adding articles on parenting, culture and politics.

He is also known for his essays on aesthetics. He wrote about the effect of moralizing art and its developmental and redemptive powers. He only wrote one political text, The Soul of Man under Socialism, in which he emphasized that individualism must be a primary focus of the government. He is most known for his novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. It serves to further emphasize Wilde's preoccupation with art. It is about a young man whose portrait ages while he never does. The portrait allows an escape from the consequences of hedonism. Critics disregarded it because of its decadence and its allusion to homosexuality.

He was also involved in a couple court cases. Wilde v. Queensberry was in response to a note left in Wilde's club that proclaimed Wilde a sodomite. Queensberry was arrested on charges of criminal libel. Queensberry was ultimately acquitted and Wilde was left bankrupt. Regin v. Wilde was were Wilde was arrested for sodomy and gross indecency. He was convicted and sentenced to two years hard labor. He was unused to harsh living conditions. It was during his imprisonment that his health declined. Wilde died on November 30, 1900 of cerebral meningitis.

Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde

Author Details

  • › DOB: 10.16.1854
  • › DOP: 11.30.1900
  • › City: Dublin
  • › Country: Ireland
  • › Religion: Christian
  • › Profession: Writer

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