Quotations From OSCAR WILDE

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  • Religions die when they are proved to be true. Science is the record of dead religions.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. "Phrases and Philosophies for the Use of the Young," Chameleon (London, Dec. 1894).
  • Work is the curse of the drinking classes.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Quoted in Life of Oscar Wilde, ch. 12, Hesketh Pearson (1946).

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  • To lose one parent may be regarded as a misfortune ... to lose both seems like carelessness.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Lady Bracknell, in The Importance of Being Earnest, act 1.
  • The sign of a Philistine age is the cry of immorality against art.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. "Lecture Delivered to the Art Students of the Royal Academy, June 30, 1883," Essays and Lectures (1908).
  • It is only the unimaginative who ever invents. The true artist is known by the use he makes of what he annexes.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Art review (May 30, 1885).
  • Nothing is impossible in Russia but reform.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Michael, in Vera, or The Nihilists (1880).
  • Either that wallpaper goes, or I do.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Attributed. Last words as he lay dying in a drab Paris hotel room, recorded in variant forms in R.H. Sherard, Life of Oscar Wilde (1906) and Richard Ellmann, Oscar Wilde (1988).
  • Art is not to be taught in Academies. It is what one looks at, not what one listens to, that makes the artist. The real schools should be the streets.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. "The Relation of Dress to Art: A Note in Black and White on Mr. Whistler's Lecture," Pall Mall Gazette (London, February 28, 1885).
  • Anybody can be good in the country. There are no temptations there.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Lord Henry, in The Picture of Dorian Gray, ch. 19 (1891).
  • To have friends, you know, one need only be good-natured; but when a man has no enemy left there must be something mean about him.
    Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Anglo-Irish playwright, author. Prince Paul, in Vera, or the Nihilists, act 2.
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