Oscar Wilde

(1854-1900 / Dublin / Ireland)

Oscar Wilde Quotes

  • ''I can resist everything except temptation.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Lord Darlington, in Lady Windermere's Fan, act 1 (1893). This was a favorite theme of Wilde's. In An Ideal Husband, act 2 (performed 1895, published 1899), Sir Robert Chiltern says to Lord Goring, "Do you really think, Arthur, that it is weakness that yields to temptation? I tell you that there are terrible temptations that it requires strength, strength and courage, to yield to." Again, in The Picture of Dorian Gray, ch. 2 (1891), Wilde wrote: "The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it."
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  • ''The fact is, you have fallen lately, Cecily, into a bad habit of thinking for yourself. You should give it up. It is not quite womanly.... Men don't like it.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Miss Prism, in The Importance of Being Earnest, act 3.
  • ''We have really everything in common with America nowadays, except, of course, language.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. repr. In Complete Works of Oscar Wilde, ed. J.B. Foreman (1966). The Canterville Ghost, ch. 1, Court and Society Review (London, Feb. 23 and March 2, 1887). The words, or similar ones, have often been attributed to George Bernard Shaw, though they are not to be found in Shaw's published writings. Bertrand Russell made a similar point in Saturday Evening Post, June 3, 1944: "It is a misfortune for Anglo- American friendship that the two countries are supposed to have a common language."
  • ''To many, no doubt, he will seem to be somewhat blatant and bumptious, but we prefer to regard him as being simply British.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. book review, Pall Mall Gazette (London, Nov. 18, 1886).
  • ''We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Lord Darlington, in Lady Windermere's Fan, act 3 (1893).
  • ''Must we really see Chicago in order to be educated?''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Mr. Erskine, in The Picture of Dorian Gray, ch. 3 (1891).
  • ''He must have a truly romantic nature, for he weeps when there is nothing at all to weep about.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. The Catherine Wheel, in "The Remarkable Rocket," The Happy Prince and Other Tales (1888).
  • ''Nothing looks so like innocence as an indiscretion.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Cecil Graham, in Lady Windermere's Fan, act 2.
  • ''Between men and women there is no friendship possible. There is passion, enmity, worship, love, but no friendship.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Lord Darlington, in Lady Windermere's Fan, act 2.
  • ''The way of paradoxes is the way of truth. To test Reality we must see it on the tight-rope. When the Verities become acrobats we can judge them.''
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Mr. Erskine, in The Picture of Dorian Gray, ch. 3 (1891).

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Best Poem of Oscar Wilde

Her Voice

THE wild bee reels from bough to bough
With his furry coat and his gauzy wing.
Now in a lily-cup, and now
Setting a jacinth bell a-swing,
In his wandering;
Sit closer love: it was here I trow
I made that vow,

Swore that two lives should be like one
As long as the sea-gull loved the sea,
As long as the sunflower sought the sun,--
It shall be, I said, for eternity
...

Read the full of Her Voice

Le Panneau

Under the rose-tree's dancing shade
There stands a little ivory girl,
Pulling the leaves of pink and pearl
With pale green nails of polished jade.

The red leaves fall upon the mould,
The white leaves flutter, one by one,
Down to a blue bowl where the sun,
Like a great dragon, writhes in gold.

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