There are as many Hamlets as there are melancholies.

Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde

Profession: Dramatist
Nationality: Irish

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If something cannot be done to check, or at least to modify, our monstrous worship of facts, art will become sterile and beauty will pass away from the land.

Wherever there is a man who exercises authority, there is a man who resists authority.

The body sins once, and has done with its sin, for action is a mode of purification. Nothing remains then but the recollection of pleasure, or the luxury of a regret. The only way to get rid of a temptation, is to yield to it.

If one doesn't talk about a thing, it has never happened. It is simply expression that gives reality to things.

Do you smoke? Jack. Well, yes, I must admit I smoke. Lady Bracknell. I am glad to hear it. A man should always have an occupation of some kind. There are far too many idle men in London as it is.

The middle classes air their moral prejudices over their gross dinner-tables, and whisper about what they call the profligacies of their betters in order to try and pretend that they are in smart society and on intimate terms with the people they slander.

Young men want to be faithful, and are not; old men want to be faithless, and cannot: that is all one can say.

Life cannot be written; life can only be lived.

Those who are faithful know only the trivial side of love: it is the faithless who know love's tragedies.

It can never be necessary to do what is not honourable.

We can forgive a man for making a useful thing as long as he does not admire it. The only excuse for making a useless thing is that one admires it intensely.

Life is a great disappointment.

Oh I can't explain. When I like people immensely I never tell their names to any one. It is like surrendering a part of them. I have grown to love secrecy. It seems to be the one thing that can make modern life mysterious or marvellous to us. The commonest thing is delightful if one only hides it.

You seem to forget that I am married, and the one charm of marriage is that it makes a life of deception absolutely necessary for both parties.