Skip Nav

Welcome to the Oscar Wilde Website

Wilde’s Writings

❶Wilde died of meningitis on 30 November And when I repeated close to his ear the Holy Names, the Acts of Contrition , Faith, Hope and Charity, with acts of humble resignation to the Will of God, he tried all through to say the words after me.

Oscar Wilde's Works: A Selected List

Navigation menu
Dandy and Wit
Recent Forum Posts on Oscar Wilde

It is the critical spirit that creates. How terrible they were! How clear, and vivid, and cruel! One could not escape from them. And yet what a subtle magic there was in them! They seemed to be able to give a plastic form to formless things, and to have a music of their own as sweet as that of viol or of lute.

Was there anything so real as words? In the afternoon I put it back again. Carson repeatedly pointed out the unusual nature of these relationships and insinuated that the men were prostitutes. Wilde replied that he did not believe in social barriers, and simply enjoyed the society of young men.

Then Carson asked Wilde directly whether he had ever kissed a certain servant boy, Wilde responded, "Oh, dear no. Wilde hesitated, then for the first time became flustered: In his opening speech for the defence, Carson announced that he had located several male prostitutes who were to testify that they had had sex with Wilde. On the advice of his lawyers, Wilde dropped the prosecution. Queensberry was found not guilty, as the court declared that his accusation that Wilde was "posing as a Somdomite" [ sic ] was justified, "true in substance and in fact.

After Wilde left the court, a warrant for his arrest was applied for on charges of sodomy and gross indecency. Robbie Ross found Wilde at the Cadogan Hotel , Knightsbridge , with Reginald Turner ; both men advised Wilde to go at once to Dover and try to get a boat to France; his mother advised him to stay and fight.

Wilde, lapsing into inaction, could only say, "The train has gone. Events moved quickly and his prosecution opened on 26 April Wilde pleaded not guilty. He had already begged Douglas to leave London for Paris, but Douglas complained bitterly, even wanting to give evidence; he was pressed to go and soon fled to the Hotel du Monde.

Fearing persecution, Ross and many others also left the United Kingdom during this time. Under cross examination Wilde was at first hesitant, then spoke eloquently:. What is " the love that dare not speak its name "? It is that deep spiritual affection that is as pure as it is perfect. It dictates and pervades great works of art, like those of Shakespeare and Michelangelo, and those two letters of mine, such as they are.

It is in this century misunderstood, so much misunderstood that it may be described as "the love that dare not speak its name," and on that account of it I am placed where I am now. It is beautiful, it is fine, it is the noblest form of affection. There is nothing unnatural about it.

It is intellectual, and it repeatedly exists between an older and a younger man, when the older man has intellect, and the younger man has all the joy, hope and glamour of life before him. That it should be so, the world does not understand. The world mocks at it, and sometimes puts one in the pillory for it. This response was counter-productive in a legal sense as it only served to reinforce the charges of homosexual behaviour.

The trial ended with the jury unable to reach a verdict. Wilde's counsel, Sir Edward Clarke, was finally able to get a magistrate to allow Wilde and his friends to post bail. The final trial was presided over by Mr Justice Wills. On 25 May Wilde and Alfred Taylor were convicted of gross indecency and sentenced to two years' hard labour. May I say nothing, my Lord?

He first entered Newgate Prison in London for processing, then was moved to Pentonville Prison , where the "hard labour" to which he had been sentenced consisted of many hours of walking a treadmill and picking oakum separating the fibres in scraps of old navy ropes , [] and where prisoners were allowed to read only the Bible and The Pilgrim's Progress.

A few months later he was moved to Wandsworth Prison in London. Inmates there also followed the regimen of "hard labour, hard fare and a hard bed", which wore harshly on Wilde's delicate health. His right ear drum was ruptured in the fall, an injury that later contributed to his death.

The transfer itself was the lowest point of his incarceration, as a crowd jeered and spat at him on the railway platform. About five months after Wilde arrived at Reading Gaol, Charles Thomas Wooldridge , a trooper in the Royal Horse Guards, was brought to Reading to await his trial for murdering his wife on 29 March ; on 17 June Wooldridge was sentenced to death and returned to Reading for his execution, which took place on Tuesday, 7 July — the first hanging at Reading in 18 years.

Wilde was not, at first, even allowed paper and pen but Haldane eventually succeeded in allowing access to books and writing materials. Between January and March Wilde wrote a 50,word letter to Douglas.

He was not allowed to send it, but was permitted to take it with him when released from prison. His own estimation of himself was: The second half of the letter traces Wilde's spiritual journey of redemption and fulfilment through his prison reading.

He realised that his ordeal had filled his soul with the fruit of experience, however bitter it tasted at the time. I wanted to eat of the fruit of all the trees in the garden of the world And so, indeed, I went out, and so I lived.

My only mistake was that I confined myself so exclusively to the trees of what seemed to me the sun-lit side of the garden, and shunned the other side for its shadow and its gloom. Wilde was released from prison on 18 May and sailed immediately for France. He never returned to the UK. On his release, he gave the manuscript to Ross, who may or may not have carried out Wilde's instructions to send a copy to Douglas who later denied having received it.

De Profundis was partially published in ; its complete and correct publication first occurred in in The Letters of Oscar Wilde. Though Wilde's health had suffered greatly from the harshness and diet of prison, he had a feeling of spiritual renewal.

He immediately wrote to the Society of Jesus requesting a six-month Catholic retreat; when the request was denied, Wilde wept. He spent his last three years in impoverished exile. His discussion of the dismissal of Warder Martin for giving biscuits to an anaemic child prisoner repeated the themes of the corruption and degeneration of punishment that he had earlier outlined in The Soul of Man under Socialism.

Wilde spent mid with Robert Ross in the seaside village of Berneval-le-Grand in northern France, where he wrote The Ballad of Reading Gaol , narrating the execution of Charles Thomas Wooldridge , who murdered his wife in a rage at her infidelity. It moves from an objective story-telling to symbolic identification with the prisoners as a whole.

Wilde juxtaposes the executed man and himself with the line "Yet each man kills the thing he loves". He adopted the proletarian ballad form, and the author was credited as "C33", Wilde's cell number in Reading Gaol.

Although Douglas had been the cause of his misfortunes, he and Wilde were reunited in August at Rouen. This meeting was disapproved of by the friends and families of both men.

Constance Wilde was already refusing to meet Wilde or allow him to see their sons, though she sent him money — a meagre three pounds a week. During the latter part of , Wilde and Douglas lived together near Naples for a few months until they were separated by their families under the threat of cutting off all funds.

Pray do what you can" he wrote to his publisher. He wandered the boulevards alone, and spent what little money he had on alcohol. Soon Wilde was sufficiently confined to his hotel to joke, on one of his final trips outside, "My wallpaper and I are fighting a duel to the death.

One of us has got to go. By 25 November Wilde had developed meningitis , then called cerebral meningitis. As the voiture rolled through the dark streets that wintry night, the sad story of Oscar Wilde was in part repeated to me Robert Ross knelt by the bedside, assisting me as best he could while I administered conditional baptism, and afterwards answering the responses while I gave Extreme Unction to the prostrate man and recited the prayers for the dying.

As the man was in a semi-comatose condition, I did not venture to administer the Holy Viaticum ; still I must add that he could be roused and was roused from this state in my presence. When roused, he gave signs of being inwardly conscious Indeed I was fully satisfied that he understood me when told that I was about to receive him into the Catholic Church and gave him the Last Sacraments And when I repeated close to his ear the Holy Names, the Acts of Contrition , Faith, Hope and Charity, with acts of humble resignation to the Will of God, he tried all through to say the words after me.

Wilde died of meningitis on 30 November The modernist angel depicted as a relief on the tomb was originally complete with male genitalia, which have since been vandalised; their current whereabouts are unknown.

In , Leon Johnson, a multimedia artist, installed a silver prosthesis to replace them. In , the tomb was cleaned of the many lipstick marks left there by admirers and a glass barrier was installed to prevent further marks or damage.

The epitaph is a verse from The Ballad of Reading Gaol: And alien tears will fill for him Pity's long-broken urn, For his mourners will be outcast men, And outcasts always mourn. In , Wilde was among an estimated 50, men who were pardoned for homosexual acts that were no longer considered offences under the Policing and Crime Act The Act is known informally as the Alan Turing law. Wilde's life continues to fascinate, and he has been the subject of numerous biographies since his death.

The earliest were memoirs by those who knew him: His Life and Confessions ; though prone to exaggeration and sometimes factually inaccurate, it offers a good literary portrait of Wilde. Oscar Wilde and Myself , largely ghost-written by T. Crosland , vindictively reacted to Douglas's discovery that De Profundis was addressed to him and defensively tried to distance him from Wilde's scandalous reputation. Both authors later regretted their work. A Summing Up and his Autobiography he was more sympathetic to Wilde.

Of Wilde's other close friends, Robert Sherard ; Robert Ross , his literary executor; and Charles Ricketts variously published biographies, reminiscences or correspondence. The first more or less objective biography of Wilde came about when Hesketh Pearson wrote Oscar Wilde: His Life and Wit Oscar Wilde, a critical study by Arthur Ransome was published in The trial in April was in a way a re-run of the trials of Oscar Wilde. The trial resulted from Douglas's rivalry with Robbie Ross for Wilde and his need of money.

Douglas lost after a reading of De Profundis refuted his claims. Wilde's life was still waiting for independent, true scholarship when Richard Ellmann began researching his biography Oscar Wilde , for which he posthumously won a National USA Book Critics Circle Award in [] and a Pulitzer Prize in Often speculative in nature, it was widely criticised for its pure conjecture and lack of scholarly rigour.

Robert Ross, 23 December []. Wilde's charm also had a lasting effect on Parisian literati, who produced several original biographies and monographs on him. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This is the latest accepted revision , reviewed on 12 September This article is about the 19th-century author. For other uses, see Oscar Wilde disambiguation. Irish poet and playwright. Photograph taken in by Napoleon Sarony.

Drama short story criticism dialogue journalism. Cyril Holland Vyvyan Holland. The Picture of Dorian Gray. Wilde and Lord Alfred Douglas in The Importance of Being Earnest. When first I was put into prison some people advised me to try and forget who I was. It was ruinous advice. It is only by realising what I am that I have found comfort of any kind.

Now I am advised by others to try on my release to forget that I have ever been in a prison at all. I know that would be equally fatal.

To regret one's own experiences is to arrest one's own development. To deny one's own experiences is to put a lie into the lips of one's own life. It is no less than a denial of the soul. The Ballad of Reading Gaol. Biographies of Oscar Wilde. Later on I think everyone will recognise his achievements; his plays and essays will endure.

Of course you may think with others that his personality and conversation were far more wonderful than anything he wrote, so that his written works give only a pale reflection of his power. Perhaps that is so, and of course it will be impossible to reproduce what is gone forever. Oscar Wilde in America. Retrieved 12 August Apparently the editor liked the verse, so switched it to the other magazine so as to attain "a larger and better audience".

I'm working on an AP Literature assignment that was given to me this summer. I've read the book, but when it gets to answering the questions i don't know or understand what exactly it is asking. I'm not expecting anyone to do my work but can some one please help lead me to the right answer. Why does Basil Hallward not want to put the portrait in an exhibition?

How do Lord Henry's comments on marriage support the novel's motif of leading a double life? To what extent has Dorian Gray influenced Basil's art? What is Lord Henry's assessment of upper class involvement in philanthro I'm a new guy in the blocks. I'd like to discuss Oscar Wilde with you. What does Oscar Wilde, in your opinion, bring us common readers most?

His idea of aesthetic art? His satire on the society? His beatiful writing style? Or his focus on redemptions and true love? Hello to everyone, I'm translating Wilde's Phrases and Philosophies for the Use of the Young into Spanish and would like to ask your opinion on the sense of the term 'profile' or 'profiles' when he writes for instance: I am reading "De Profundis" and am struck.

That seems the only word I can conjure. I can't express his suffering; only he. Has one of you read a balanced biography of his life? I fancied him such a sick, perverse, twisted artist after completion of "The Picture of Dorian Gray," but I see now that he's more heart than most men.

Words can't express my pity for the shame brought upon his life by a narcissistic brat Please submit a quiz here. Here is where you find links to related content on this site or other sites, possibly including full books or essays about Oscar Wilde written by other authors featured on this site.

Biography of Oscar Wilde Oscar Wilde , Irish dramatist, poet, and author wrote the darkly sardonic Faustian themed The Picture of Dorian Gray ; In the centre of the room, clamped to an upright easel, stood the full-length portrait of a young man of extraordinary personal beauty, and in front of it, some little distance away, was sitting the artist himself, Basil Hallward, We live in an age when men treat art as if it were meant to be a form of autobiography.

We have lost the abstract sense of beauty. Some day I will show the world what it is; and for that reason the world shall never see my portrait of Dorian Gray. Posted By ralphboats in Wilde, Oscar 0 Replies. Posted By chevalierdelame in Wilde, Oscar 2 Replies. The Truth of Masks - just a presentation of Art's highest desire: Is Oscar Wilde overrated?

Help with qoute I want to put a Oscar Wilde qoute on my wall. Posted By pet in Wilde, Oscar 5 Replies. Pat bateman's 'Wilde' Wednesday I have decreed a day of appreciation for Ireland's foppish most witty and poetic son, Oscar Wilde.

Older Oscar Wilde Books. Posted By fabulous in Wilde, Oscar 1 Reply. What does Oscar Wilde bring us common readers most Hi, every one. Wilde's use of the word 'profile' Hello to everyone, I'm translating Wilde's Phrases and Philosophies for the Use of the Young into Spanish and would like to ask your opinion on the sense of the term 'profile' or 'profiles' when he writes for instance: Biography of Oscar Wilde?

Lord Arthur Savile's Crime. The Picture of Dorian Gray. The Portrait of Mr. A Critic in Pall Mall.

Main Topics

Privacy Policy

Oscar Wilde. Biography of Oscar Wilde and a searchable collection of works. His writings such as Dorian Gray with homoerotic themes also brought much controversy for him but he was part of the ever-growing movement of 'decadents' who advocated pacifism, social reform, and libertarianism. While many vilified him, he was making his mark with.

Privacy FAQs

10 days ago · As an activist, Wilde persists as a necessary voice "from the depths" of these stark texts. As we learn in this interview, when Jason Lutes began drawing the Berlin series in the '90s, he had no.

About Our Ads

De Profundis and Other Prison Writings (Penguin Classics) [Oscar Wilde, Colm Toibin] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. A definitive new collection of Oscar Wilde’s best prison letters and poetry, with an introduction by Colm Toibin Bankrupt and with his reputation in ruins/5(31). The Writings (Classic Reprint) [Oscar Wilde] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Excerpt from The Writings Some idea of the mediaeval barbarism still .

Cookie Info

Oscar Wilde was born in in Dublin, Ireland to prominent intellectuals William Wilde and Lady Jane Francesca Wilde. Though they were not aristocrats, the Wildes were well-off and provided Oscar with a fine education. Oscar was especially influenced by his mother, a brilliantly witty raconteur. Get inspired by the most famous quotes from Oscar Wilde on creativity and writing.