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Flamboyant man-about-town, Oscar Wilde had a reputation that preceded him, especially in his early career. He was born to a middle-class Irish family (his father was a surgeon) and was trained as a scholarship boy at Trinity College, Dublin. He subsequently won a scholarship to Magdalen College, Oxford, where he was heavily influenced by John Ruskin and Walter Pater, whose aestheticism was taken to its radical extreme in Wilde's work. By 1879 he was already known as a wit and a dandy; soon after, in fact, he was satirized in Gilbert and Sullivan's Patience. Largely on the strength of his public persona, Wilde undertook a lecture tour to the United States in 1882, where he saw his play Vera open---unsuccessfully---in New York. His first published volume, Poems, which met with some degree of approbation, appeared at this time. In 1884 he married Constance Lloyd, the daughter of an Irish lawyer, and within two years they had two sons. During this period he wrote, among others, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891), his only novel, which scandalized many readers and was widely denounced as immoral. Wilde simultaneously dismissed and encouraged such criticism with his statement in the preface, "There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written or badly written. That is all." In 1891 Wilde published A House of Pomegranates, a collection of fantasy tales, and in 1892 gained commercial and critical success with his play, Lady Windermere's Fan He followed this comedy with A Woman of No Importance (1893), An Ideal Husband (1895), and his most famous play, The Importance of Being Earnest (1895). During this period he also wrote Salome, in French, but was unable to obtain a license for it in England. Performed in Paris in 1896, the play was translated and published in England in 1894 by Lord Alfred Douglas and was illustrated by Aubrey Beardsley. Lord Alfred was the son of the Marquess of Queensbury, who objected to his son's spending so much time with Wilde because of Wilde's flamboyant behavior and homosexual relationships. In 1895, after being publicly insulted by the marquess, Wilde brought an unsuccessful slander suit against the peer. The result of his inability to prove slander was his own trial on charges of sodomy, of which he was found guilty and sentenced to two years of hard labor. During his time in prison, he wrote a scathing rebuke to Lord Alfred, published in 1905 as De Profundis. In it he argues that his conduct was a result of his standing "in symbolic relations to the art and culture" of his time. After his release, Wilde left England for Paris, where he wrote what may be his most famous poem, The Ballad of Reading Gaol (1898), drawn from his prison experiences. Among his other notable writing is The Soul of Man under Socialism (1891), which argues for individualism and freedom of artistic expression. There has been a revived interest in Wilde's work; among the best recent volumes are Richard Ellmann's, Oscar Wilde and Regenia Gagnier's Idylls of the Marketplace , two works that vary widely in their critical assumptions and approach to Wilde but that offer rich insights into his complex character. (Bowker Author Biography) — beskrivning från Dorian Grays porträtt… (mer)
Dorian Grays porträtt 36,945 exemplar, 602 recensioner
The Importance of Being Earnest 10,359 exemplar, 169 recensioner
The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde 4,678 exemplar, 24 recensioner
The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Writings 2,377 exemplar, 19 recensioner
Spöket på Canterville 2,110 exemplar, 73 recensioner
De profundis 1,543 exemplar, 21 recensioner
Salome : sorgespel i en akt (Författare) 1,490 exemplar, 27 recensioner
An Ideal Husband 1,320 exemplar, 33 recensioner
The Happy Prince and Other Tales 1,249 exemplar, 26 recensioner
Complete Short Fiction 1,210 exemplar, 13 recensioner
Sagor 1,109 exemplar, 8 recensioner
Lady Windermere's Fan 1,029 exemplar, 29 recensioner
Den själviske jätten 728 exemplar, 18 recensioner
Balladen om fängelset i Reading 675 exemplar, 14 recensioner
De Profundis and Other Writings 645 exemplar, 6 recensioner
A Woman of No Importance 617 exemplar, 12 recensioner
Den Lycklige Prinsen 580 exemplar, 17 recensioner
The Portable Oscar Wilde: Revised Edition 488 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Teleny : eller Medaljens baksida (attributed) 457 exemplar, 5 recensioner
The Complete Plays 387 exemplar, 2 recensioner
The Fairy Tales 364 exemplar, 5 recensioner
The Ballad of Reading Gaol and Other Poems 353 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Människans själ under socialismen 331 exemplar, 6 recensioner
Oscar Wilde's The picture of Dorian Gray: a graphic novel (Författare) 320 exemplar, 2 recensioner
The Wit and Humor of Oscar Wilde 315 exemplar, 4 recensioner
A House of Pomegranates 300 exemplar, 8 recensioner
Aforismi 288 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Oscar Wilde Stories for Children 258 exemplar, 5 recensioner
The Plays of Oscar Wilde 248 exemplar, 2 recensioner
El fantasma de Canterville y otros cuentos 221 exemplar, 6 recensioner
The Collected Oscar Wilde 214 exemplar, 2 recensioner
The Uncensored Picture of Dorian Gray 200 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Intentions 195 exemplar, 3 recensioner
The Nightingale and the Rose 166 exemplar, 6 recensioner
Stories 160 exemplar, 4 recensioner
The Happy Prince and Other Fairy Tales 154 exemplar, 1 recension
The Wit of Oscar Wilde 150 exemplar, 3 recensioner
The Decay of Lying 141 exemplar, 2 recensioner
The Works of Oscar Wilde 127 exemplar, 1 recension
The Importance of Being Earnest / Lady Windermere's Fan (Författare) 125 exemplar, 1 recension
The Selfish Giant 121 exemplar
Selected Poems (Phoenix Poetry) 113 exemplar, 1 recension
Nothing...Except My Genius 108 exemplar, 1 recension
Lord Arthur Savile's Crime (Författare) 101 exemplar, 3 recensioner
The Critic as Artist 95 exemplar, 3 recensioner
The Birthday of the Infanta 94 exemplar, 1 recension
The Letters of Oscar Wilde 91 exemplar, 1 recension
The Happy Prince and Other Tales 90 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Selected Letters of Oscar Wilde 81 exemplar, 1 recension
The Selfish Giant and Other Stories 74 exemplar, 1 recension
Wilde [1997 film] (Författare) 67 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Essays and Lectures 60 exemplar, 1 recension
The Duchess of Padua 59 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Spöket på Canterville : Lord Arthur Saviles brott (Författare) 58 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Table Talk 56 exemplar, 1 recension
Lord Arthur Savile's Crime 53 exemplar, 1 recension
Var dig själv! 52 exemplar, 5 recensioner
The Star Child 43 exemplar, 1 recension
Selected Plays 42 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Oscar Wilde: Short Stories 41 exemplar, 1 recension
The Fisherman and his Soul 41 exemplar, 1 recension
Opere 38 exemplar
The Devoted Friend 35 exemplar
Little Book of Sayings of Oscar Wilde 32 exemplar, 1 recension
Selected Writings 30 exemplar
Great Short Works 29 exemplar, 1 recension
More Letters 27 exemplar
The picture of Dorian Gray 26 exemplar, 2 recensioner
The Canterville Ghost [1996 TV movie] (Writer) 25 exemplar, 3 recensioner
The Sphinx Without a Secret 24 exemplar, 1 recension
Essays and Letters 24 exemplar
The Oscar Wilde Collection 24 exemplar, 1 recension
Contes et récits 24 exemplar, 1 recension
The Canterville Ghost [1944 film] (Författare) 23 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Three Plays 23 exemplar
Charmides and Other Poems 21 exemplar, 1 recension
Teleny and Camille 21 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Plays and Poems 21 exemplar
The Oscar Wilde Collection [BBC Play of the Month series] (Playwright) 20 exemplar, 1 recension
Oscariana 20 exemplar
Selected Works 20 exemplar
Stories for Young People: Oscar Wilde 20 exemplar, 1 recension
Fairy Tales 18 exemplar
A Florentine Tragedy 16 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Cuentos 15 exemplar
Racconti 15 exemplar
Howards End 15 exemplar
Lady Fuckingham 15 exemplar, 1 recension
Komedier 15 exemplar
Torre de papel 15 exemplar
Poems and Essays 15 exemplar
The Bedside Wilde 13 exemplar
Tutti i racconti 12 exemplar
The Sphinx 12 exemplar, 1 recension
The Young King 11 exemplar
O principe feliz 10 exemplar
Reviews 10 exemplar
Shorter Prose Pieces 10 exemplar, 1 recension
Poemas en prosa 10 exemplar
La Sainte Courtisane 9 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Stories & Fairy Tales 9 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Paradoja y genio 9 exemplar
The Harlot's house: a poem 9 exemplar, 1 recension
The Selfish Giant / The Happy Prince (Författare) 9 exemplar
Teatro 8 exemplar, 1 recension
Tutto il teatro 7 exemplar
Miscellanies 7 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Oscar Wilde The Dover Reader 6 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Oscariana 6 exemplar
Miscellanies 5 exemplar
Letters to the Sphinx 5 exemplar, 1 recension
Le Portrait de Dorian Gray (Författare) 5 exemplar
I capolavori 5 exemplar
La importancia de no hacer nada 4 exemplar, 1 recension
Les Pensées 4 exemplar
Salomé / A Florentine tragedy / Vera (Författare) 4 exemplar
Twee balladen 4 exemplar
Prozagedichten 4 exemplar
Selections from Oscar Wilde 4 exemplar, 2 recensioner
PLAYS 4 exemplar
Eros kertje 4 exemplar
The Happy Prince and Other Tales 4 exemplar, 1 recension
The Canterville Ghost [1986 TV movie] (Författare) 4 exemplar
La importancia de discutirlo todo 3 exemplar, 1 recension
Charmides 3 exemplar
Three Tales 3 exemplar
Pensamiemtos 3 exemplar
Obras Inmortales 3 exemplar
Märchen to go 3 exemplar
Miscellaneous 3 exemplar, 1 recension
Wilde Oscar 3 exemplar
Firenzei tragédia ; A szent parázna (Författare) 3 exemplar, 1 recension
Salomé / Lot in Sodom (Författare) 3 exemplar
Teatro escogido 2 exemplar
Gedichten 2 exemplar
Noveletes 2 exemplar
Lettres 2 exemplar
The Complete Fairy Stories of Oscar 2 exemplar, 1 recension
Ainsi parlait Oscar Wilde 2 exemplar, 1 recension
Salomé [1922 film] (Play) 2 exemplar
AFORIZMA 2 exemplar
PRINCI I LUMTUR 2 exemplar
Classic Irish Short Stories Volume 1 2 exemplar, 1 recension
Weisheiten. 2 exemplar
Letzte Briefe 2 exemplar
Five Tales 2 exemplar
Le chasseur d'opossum 2 exemplar, 1 recension
Fingerzeige 2 exemplar
Pohádky 2 exemplar
Cinco cuentos 2 exemplar
O Jovem Rei 2 exemplar
I racconti 2 exemplar
CUENTOS O. WILDE 1 exemplar
Portreti i Dorian Greit 1 exemplar, 1 recension
OBRA COMPLETA 1 exemplar
Obra Completa 1 exemplar
f 1 exemplar
Vested 1 exemplar
Fairy Tales of Oscar Wilde, Volume 1 1 exemplar, 1 recension
FIABE MAGICHE 1 exemplar
Nar Evi 1 exemplar
Der tierisch-menschliche Charakter (Bidragsgivare) 1 exemplar
Oscar Wilde: Complete Short Fiction (Författare) 1 exemplar
BALADA E BURGUT 1 exemplar
Wyrms 1 exemplar
366 Aforismi 1 exemplar
(all) 1 exemplar
The Women of Homer 1 exemplar, 1 recension
De Profundis 1 exemplar
Zoriany Hlopchyk 1 exemplar
El maestro 1 exemplar
Öyküler 1 1 exemplar
Сказки 1 exemplar
Komöödiad 1 exemplar
A Alma Humana 1 exemplar
Poemas em Prosa 1 exemplar
Meditações 1 exemplar
Flowers of Gold 1 exemplar
Samtliche Dramen 1 exemplar
Versek 1 exemplar
Gondolatok 1 exemplar
Selections 1 exemplar
Essays I 1 exemplar
Contos Encantados (Författare) 1 exemplar
Essays II 1 exemplar
Briefe II 1 exemplar
Theaterstücke I 1 exemplar
Die Erzählungen 1 exemplar
Echoes 1 exemplar
O Gigante Egoísta e Outros Contos 1 exemplar, 1 recension
Selected Stories 1 exemplar
Saggi 1 exemplar
Kinderverhalen 1 exemplar
Four Letters 1 exemplar
The New remorse 1 exemplar
Easter Day 1 exemplar
London models 1 exemplar
Apologia 1 exemplar
Requiescat 1 exemplar
PAT 1 exemplar
Hellenism 1 exemplar
Ziele 1 exemplar
Ave! Maria 1 exemplar
Two tales 1 exemplar
Magdalen walks 1 exemplar
Part01 1 exemplar
The Georgics 1 exemplar
Μια ζωή… 1 exemplar
Four Stories 1 exemplar
Theatre à lire 1 exemplar
Zloceste misli 1 exemplar
24 poesie 1 exemplar
Oeuvres compls 1 exemplar
Novelle 1 exemplar
: (1892) 1 exemplar
Oykuler 1 exemplar
Письма 1 exemplar
Lezioni di stile 1 exemplar
Helas {poem} 1 exemplar
Théâtre 1 exemplar
Panthea 1 exemplar
Level 2 1 exemplar
Bajke 1 exemplar
Cuentos I. Antología 1 exemplar, 1 recension
Tutta la poesia 1 exemplar
Satyricon (supposed translator, vissa utgåvor) 3,295 exemplar, 31 recensioner
Oscar Wilde (Subject) 1,883 exemplar, 9 recensioner
The Making of a Poem: A Norton Anthology of Poetic Forms (Bidragsgivare) 1,175 exemplar, 9 recensioner
The Classic Fairy Tales [Norton Critical Edition] (Bidragsgivare) 956 exemplar, 5 recensioner
The Nation's Favourite Poems (Bidragsgivare, vissa utgåvor) 600 exemplar, 7 recensioner
The Book of Fantasy (Bidragsgivare) 564 exemplar, 12 recensioner
Spells of Enchantment: The Wondrous Fairy Tales of Western Culture (Bidragsgivare) 541 exemplar, 4 recensioner
A Treasury of the World's Best Loved Poems (Bidragsgivare) 493 exemplar, 4 recensioner
Black Water: The Book of Fantastic Literature (Bidragsgivare) 477 exemplar, 8 recensioner
The Victorian Fairytale Book (Bidragsgivare) 437 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Critical Theory Since Plato (Bidragsgivare, vissa utgåvor) 385 exemplar, 1 recension
The Oxford Book of Modern Fairy Tales (Bidragsgivare) 350 exemplar, 6 recensioner
Eight Great Comedies (Bidragsgivare) 339 exemplar, 2 recensioner
100 Ghastly Little Ghost Stories (Bidragsgivare) 323 exemplar, 4 recensioner
Ghosts: A Treasury of Chilling Tales Old & New (Bidragsgivare) 312 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Witches & Warlocks: Tales of Black Magic, Old & New (Bidragsgivare) 271 exemplar, 4 recensioner
24 Favorite One Act Plays (Bidragsgivare) 268 exemplar, 1 recension
Criticism: Major Statements (Bidragsgivare) 209 exemplar
The Golden Treasury of Children's Literature Set (Bidragsgivare) 197 exemplar, 4 recensioner
The Penguin Book of Irish Verse (Bidragsgivare) 184 exemplar
Late Victorian Gothic Tales (Bidragsgivare) 177 exemplar
The Importance of Being Earnest [2002 film] (Original play) 176 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Love Letters (Bidragsgivare) 173 exemplar, 1 recension
The Portable Victorian Reader (Bidragsgivare) 173 exemplar
Masterpieces of the Drama (Bidragsgivare) 171 exemplar, 2 recensioner
The Penguin Book of Irish Fiction (Bidragsgivare) 144 exemplar
The Big Book of Classic Fantasy (Bidragsgivare) 141 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Irish Tales of Terror (Bidragsgivare) 121 exemplar, 2 recensioner
The Anarchist Reader (Författare, vissa utgåvor) 121 exemplar
Sixteen Famous British Plays (Bidragsgivare) 108 exemplar, 1 recension
The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories (Bidragsgivare) 106 exemplar
The Standard Book of British and American Verse (Bidragsgivare) 105 exemplar, 1 recension
Thirty Famous One-Act Plays (Bidragsgivare) 103 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Chilling Ghost Short Stories (Bidragsgivare) 99 exemplar, 2 recensioner
New Worlds for Old (Bidragsgivare) 96 exemplar, 1 recension
Treasury Of Gothic & Supernatural (Bidragsgivare) 95 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Sagor av Oscar Wilde. Den själviske jätten ; Stjärnbarnet (Bidragsgivare) 92 exemplar, 3 recensioner
The Dedalus Book of Decadence (Bidragsgivare) 91 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Dorian Gray [2009 film] (Original story) 86 exemplar, 1 recension
Oscar Wilde (Bidragsgivare) 85 exemplar, 1 recension
Decadent Poetry (Bidragsgivare) 83 exemplar
A Book of Princesses (Bidragsgivare) 81 exemplar
The Treasury of English Short Stories (Bidragsgivare) 80 exemplar
Victorian Fairy Tales (Bidragsgivare) 76 exemplar, 5 recensioner
Easter Stories: Classic Tales for the Holy Season (Bidragsgivare) 76 exemplar, 11 recensioner
Klassiska spökhistorier (Bidragsgivare) 76 exemplar, 1 recension
The Folio Book of Comic Short Stories (Bidragsgivare) 69 exemplar, 1 recension
Contemporary Drama: 15 Plays (Bidragsgivare) 67 exemplar, 1 recension
Selected Stories from the 19th Century (Bidragsgivare) 66 exemplar, 1 recension
The Importance of Being Earnest [1952 film] (Original play) 66 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Marvel Illustrated: The Picture of Dorian Gray (Bidragsgivare) 65 exemplar, 4 recensioner
The Bedside Book of Famous British Stories (Bidragsgivare) 61 exemplar
Sagor av Oscar Wilde. Den unge kungen. Den förnäma raketen (Bidragsgivare) 60 exemplar, 4 recensioner
The Mammoth Book of Fairy Tales (Bidragsgivare) 60 exemplar
Sagor av Oscar Wilde. Prinsessans födelsedag (Bidragsgivare) 59 exemplar, 6 recensioner
Great Classic Stories: 22 Unabridged Classics (Bidragsgivare, vissa utgåvor) 47 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Victorian Love Stories: An Oxford Anthology (Bidragsgivare) 47 exemplar, 1 recension
The Second Dedalus Book of Decadence the Black Feast (Bidragsgivare) 46 exemplar, 3 recensioner
Great Tales of Terror (Bidragsgivare) 44 exemplar
A Century of Humour (Bidragsgivare) 42 exemplar
Fairy Tales of Oscar Wilde, Vol. 5: The Happy Prince (Bidragsgivare) 39 exemplar, 1 recension
Poetry of Witness: The Tradition in English, 1500-2001 (Bidragsgivare) 38 exemplar, 1 recension
The Picture of Dorian Gray [1945 film] (Original novel) 38 exemplar, 1 recension
The Genius of the Later English Theater (Bidragsgivare) 34 exemplar
The Vintage Book of Classic Crime (Bidragsgivare) 33 exemplar
Irish Ghost Stories (Bidragsgivare) 32 exemplar, 1 recension
Stories To Get You Through The Night (Bidragsgivare) 31 exemplar
Witches, Witches, Witches (Bidragsgivare) 30 exemplar
The Picture of Dorian Gray: A Moral Entertainment (Original play) 30 exemplar, 1 recension
The Big Book of Victorian Mysteries (Bidragsgivare) 28 exemplar, 1 recension
A Book of Old Ballads (Bidragsgivare) 26 exemplar
Salome [libretto] (Librettist, vissa utgåvor) 25 exemplar
Great Ghost Stories: 34 Classic Tales of the Supernatural (Bidragsgivare) 24 exemplar, 1 recension
A Book of Princes (Bidragsgivare) 22 exemplar, 1 recension
Graphic Classics: Oscar Wilde (Författare) 21 exemplar, 2 recensioner
Cuentos de amor victorianos (Bidragsgivare) 19 exemplar
Twelve Classic One-Act Plays (Bidragsgivare) 17 exemplar
Urban Crime Short Stories (Gothic Fantasy) (Bidragsgivare) 16 exemplar
Wild Night Company: Irish Tales of Terror (Bidragsgivare) 16 exemplar
Specter! A Chrestomathy of Spookery (Bidragsgivare) 15 exemplar
Masters of British Literature, Volume B (Bidragsgivare) 15 exemplar
All verdens fortellere (Bidragsgivare, vissa utgåvor) 14 exemplar, 1 recension
Dark Holidays: A Collection of Ghost Stories (Bidragsgivare) 13 exemplar, 1 recension
A Little Night Reading (Bidragsgivare) 12 exemplar, 1 recension
The chameleon (Bidragsgivare) 10 exemplar
Englische Essays aus drei Jahrhunderten (Bidragsgivare) 10 exemplar
Love Stories (Bidragsgivare) 9 exemplar
The Star Child: A Fairy Tale (Original Author) 8 exemplar, 1 recension
A Treasury of Great Short Stories (Bidragsgivare) 7 exemplar
Thin Air: An Anthology of Ghost Stories (Bidragsgivare) 7 exemplar
Fear! Fear! Fear! (Bidragsgivare) 6 exemplar
The Moth and Other Stories (Bidragsgivare) 6 exemplar, 1 recension
Kipling and the Critics (Bidragsgivare) 6 exemplar
The Selfish Giant [2013 film] (Original book) 5 exemplar
Jabberwocky 3 (Bidragsgivare) 5 exemplar
Six Short Stories (Bidragsgivare) 4 exemplar
La poesía inglesa románticos y victorianos (Bidragsgivare) 4 exemplar, 1 recension
Immortal Stories (Bidragsgivare) 3 exemplar
Best Crime Stories (Bidragsgivare) 3 exemplar
Tredive mesterfortællinger (Författare, vissa utgåvor) 3 exemplar, 1 recension
Lady Windermere's Fan [1925 film] (Original book) 2 exemplar, 1 recension
The Star Child (Clay Classics) [1994 film] (Original story) 2 exemplar
An Ideal Husband [1999 film] (Original play) 2 exemplar
Cuentos Requeridos 1 (Bidragsgivare) 1 exemplar
Wakacje Wśród Duchów (Bidragsgivare) 1 exemplar
An Ideal Husband [1947 film] (Original play) 1 exemplar
The Fan [1949 film] (Original story) 1 exemplar
Fantastyczne Opowieści (Bidragsgivare) 1 exemplar

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Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde (16 October 1854 – 30 November 1900) was an Irish poet and playwright. After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, the early 1890s saw him become one of the most popular playwrights in London. He is best remembered for his epigrams, plays, and his novel The Picture of Dorian Gray.

Wilde's parents were Anglo-Irish intellectuals in Dublin. A young Wilde learned to speak fluent French and German. At university, Wilde read Greats; he demonstrated himself to be an exceptional classicist, first at Trinity College Dublin, then at Oxford. He became associated with the emerging philosophy of aestheticism, led by two of his tutors, Walter Pater and John Ruskin. After university, Wilde moved to London into fashionable cultural and social circles.

As a spokesman for aestheticism, he tried his hand at various literary activities: he published a book of poems, lectured in the United States and Canada on the new "English Renaissance in Art" and interior decoration, and then returned to London where he worked prolifically as a journalist. Known for his biting wit, flamboyant dress and glittering conversational skill, Wilde became one of the best-known personalities of his day. At the turn of the 1890s, he refined his ideas about the supremacy of art in a series of dialogues and essays, and incorporated themes of decadence, duplicity, and beauty into what would be his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890). The opportunity to construct aesthetic details precisely, and combine them with larger social themes, drew Wilde to write drama. He wrote Salome (1891) in French while in Paris but it was refused a licence for England due to an absolute prohibition on the portrayal of Biblical subjects on the English stage. Unperturbed, Wilde produced four society comedies in the early 1890s, which made him one of the most successful playwrights of late-Victorian London.

At the height of his fame and success, while The Importance of Being Earnest (1895) was still being performed in London, Wilde prosecuted the Marquess of Queensberry for criminal libel. The Marquess was the father of Wilde's lover, Lord Alfred Douglas. The libel trial unearthed evidence that caused Wilde to drop his charges and led to his own arrest and trial for gross indecency with men. After two more trials he was convicted and sentenced to two years' hard labour, the maximum penalty, and was jailed from 1895 to 1897. During his last year in prison, he wrote De Profundis (published posthumously in 1905), a long letter which discusses his spiritual journey through his trials, forming a dark counterpoint to his earlier philosophy of pleasure. On his release, he left immediately for France, never to return to Ireland or Britain. There he wrote his last work, The Ballad of Reading Gaol (1898), a long poem commemorating the harsh rhythms of prison life.

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