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Quotes by Oscar Wilde
(1854 - 1900)

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ActingI love acting. It is so much more real than life.
ActionAction: the last resource of those who know not how to dream.
AdviceThe only thing one can do with good advice is to pass it on. It is never of any use to oneself.
AgeOne should never trust a woman who tells one her real age. A woman who would tell one that, would tell one anything
AgreementWhenever people agree with me I always feel I must be wrong.
AmbitionAmbition is the last refuge of the failure.
AmericaPerhaps, after all, America never has been discovered. I myself would say that it had merely been detected.
- ("The Picture of Dorian Gray")
AmericansThe Americans are certainly great hero-worshipers, and always take their heros from the criminal classes.
AmericansWe have really everything in common with America nowadays except, of course, language.
AmericansAmerica had often been discovered before Columbus, but it had always been hushed up.
ArgumentsArguments are to be avoided; they are always vulgar and often convincing.
ArtThe enemy of art is the absence of limitations.
BachelorsRich bachelors should be heavily taxed. It is not fair that some men should be happier that others.
BibleWhen I think of all the harm the Bible has done, I despair of ever writing anything to equal it.
- (Irish-born author)
BiographyBiography lends to death a new terror.
BooksThere is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written or badly written.
BoresBore: a man who is never unintentionally rude.
BrotherhoodThe brotherhood of man is not a mere poet's dream: it is a most depressing and humiliating reality.
CalmnessNothing is so aggrivating as calmness.
ClassEach class preaches the importance of those virtues it need not exercise. The rich harp on the value of thrift, the idle grow eloquent over the dignity of labor.
ConceitI never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.
ConscienceConscience and cowardice are really the same thing. Conscience is the trade-name of the firm.
ConsistencyConsistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.
CountryAnybody can be good in the country. There are no temptations there.
CynicsWhat is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.
DeathAlas, I am dying beyond my means.
DemocracyThe bludgeioning of the people, by the people, for the people
DoubtTo believe is very dull. To doubt is intensely engrossing. To be on the alert is to live, to be lulled into security is to die.
EducationSociety produces rogues, and education makes one rogue cleverer than another.
EnimiesA man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies.
ExperienceExperience is the name that everyone gives to their mistakes.
FashionFashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.
FriendsA true friend stabs you in the front.
GeniusThe public is wonderfully tolerant. It forgives everything except genius.
GodI sometimes think that God, in creating man, overestimated His ability.
GossipThe only thing worse than peple talking about you is people not talking about you
HuntingThe English country gentleman galloping after a fox -- the unspeakable in full pursuit of the uneatable.
IllusionIllusion is the first of all pleasures.
InformationIt is a very sad thing that nowadays there is so little useless information.
InsultsBernard Shaw has no enemies but is intensely disliked by his freinds.
InsultsOne must have a heart of stone to read the death of Little Nell by Dickens without laughing.
InsultsMr. Henry James writes fiction as if it were a painful duty.
InvitationsI must decline your invitation due to a subsequent engagement.
JournalismThe difference between literature and journalism is that journalism is unreadable and literature is not read.
JournalismJournalism justifies its own existance by the great Darwinian principle of the the survival of the vulgarist.
JournalismThere is much to be said in favor of modern jounalism. By giving us the opinions of the uneducated, it keeps us in touch with the ignorance of the community.
KindnessOne can always be kind to people about whom one cares nothing.
LifeLife is too important to be taken seriously.
LifeLife is far too important a thing ever to talk seriously about.
MarriageBigamy is having one wife too many. Monogamy is the same.
MartyrdomA thing is not necessarily true because a man dies for it.
Men and WomenWomen represent the triumph of matter over mind, just as men represent the triumph of mind over morals.
Misc.Only the shallow know themselves.
MissionariesMissionaries are going to reform the world whether it wants it or not.
MoneyIt is better to have a permanent income than to be fascinating.
MoralityMorality is simply the attitude we adopt toward people we personally dislike.
MorningOnly dull people are brilliant at breakfast.
MusicMusic makes one feel so romantic - at least it always gets on one's nerves - which is the same thing nowadays.
OpinionIn all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane.
OptimismThe basis for optimism is sheer terror.
PatriotismPatriotism is the virtue of the vicious.
PeersWhy was I born with such contemporaries?
PeopleSome cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.
PeopleMost people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.
PeopleIt is absurd to divide people into good and bad. People are either charming or tedious.
PessimistsPessimist: one who, when he has the choice of two evils, chooses both.
PhilanthropyPhilanthropy is the refuge of rich people who wish to annoy their fellow creatures.
PoetryThere are two ways of disliking poetry; one way is to dislike it, the other is to read Pope.
PoetryAll bad poetry springs from genuine feeling.
PrejudiceI don't like principles. I prefer prejudices.
ReputationOne can survive everything, nowadays, except death, and live down everything except a good reputation.
SaintsThe only difference between saints and sinners is that every saint has a past while every sinner has a future.
ScandalScandal is gossip made tedious by morality.
SeriousnessSeriousness is the only refuge of the shallow.
ShakespeareAre the commentators on "Hamlet" really mad, or only pretending to be.
ShakespeareNow we sit through Shakespeare in order to recognize the quotations.
SincerityA little sincerity is a dangerous thing, and a great deal of it is absolutely fatal.
SocietyIt is always a silly thing to give advice, but to give good advice is absolutely fatal.
TemperamentA bad temper, like Mr. Whistler's paintings, should never be displayed in public.
TimeMost modern calendars mar the sweet simplicity of our lives by reminding us that each day that passes is the anniversary of some perfectly uninteresting event.
TruthThe pure and simple truth is rarely pure and never simple.
WangerI like Wagner's music better than any other music. Itis so loud that one can talk the whole time without people hearing what one says. That is a great advantage.
WarAs long as war is regarded as wicked, it will always have its fascination. When it is looked upon as vulgar; it will cease to be popular.
womenwomen are a fascinatingly wilful sex. Every women is a rebel, and usually in wild revolt against herself.
YouthI am not young enough to know everything.
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