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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) — biography from The Picture of Dorian Gray… (more)
The Picture of Dorian Gray 37,003 copies, 602 reviews
The Importance of Being Earnest 10,365 copies, 169 reviews
The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde 4,684 copies, 24 reviews
The Canterville Ghost 2,113 copies, 73 reviews
De Profundis 1,545 copies, 21 reviews
Salomé (Author) 1,491 copies, 27 reviews
An Ideal Husband 1,320 copies, 33 reviews
The Happy Prince and Other Tales 1,255 copies, 26 reviews
Complete Short Fiction 1,210 copies, 13 reviews
Lady Windermere's Fan 1,030 copies, 29 reviews
The Selfish Giant 728 copies, 18 reviews
The Ballad of Reading Gaol 675 copies, 14 reviews
De Profundis and Other Writings 647 copies, 6 reviews
A Woman of No Importance 619 copies, 12 reviews
The Happy Prince 578 copies, 17 reviews
Teleny (attributed) 458 copies, 5 reviews
The Complete Plays 388 copies, 2 reviews
The Fairy Tales 365 copies, 5 reviews
The Soul Of Man Under Socialism 331 copies, 6 reviews
The Wit and Humor of Oscar Wilde 316 copies, 4 reviews
A House of Pomegranates 300 copies, 8 reviews
Aforismi 289 copies, 3 reviews
Oscar Wilde Stories for Children 258 copies, 5 reviews
The Plays of Oscar Wilde 248 copies, 2 reviews
The Collected Oscar Wilde 214 copies, 2 reviews
Intentions 195 copies, 3 reviews
The Nightingale and the Rose 166 copies, 6 reviews
Stories 162 copies, 4 reviews
The Wit of Oscar Wilde 150 copies, 3 reviews
The Decay of Lying 141 copies, 2 reviews
The Works of Oscar Wilde 127 copies, 1 review
Selected Poems (Phoenix Poetry) 113 copies, 1 review
Nothing...Except My Genius 108 copies, 1 review
Lord Arthur Savile's Crime (Author) 101 copies, 3 reviews
The Critic as Artist 95 copies, 3 reviews
The Birthday of the Infanta 94 copies, 1 review
The Letters of Oscar Wilde 92 copies, 1 review
Wilde [1997 film] (Author) 67 copies, 3 reviews
Essays and Lectures 60 copies, 1 review
The Duchess of Padua 59 copies, 2 reviews
Table Talk 56 copies, 1 review
Lord Arthur Savile's Crime 53 copies, 1 review
Vera; or, The Nihilists 52 copies, 5 reviews
The Star Child 43 copies, 1 review
Selected Plays 42 copies, 2 reviews
Oscar Wilde: Short Stories 41 copies, 1 review
The Fisherman and his Soul 41 copies, 1 review
Opere 38 copies
Great Short Works 29 copies, 1 review
More Letters 27 copies
The picture of Dorian Gray 26 copies, 2 reviews
The Canterville Ghost [1996 TV movie] (Writer) 25 copies, 3 reviews
The Sphinx Without a Secret 24 copies, 1 review
The Oscar Wilde Collection 24 copies, 1 review
Contes et récits 24 copies, 1 review
The Canterville Ghost [1944 film] (Author) 23 copies, 2 reviews
Three Plays 23 copies
Charmides and Other Poems 21 copies, 1 review
Teleny and Camille 21 copies, 2 reviews
Plays and Poems 21 copies
Oscariana 20 copies
Selected Works 20 copies
Fairy Tales 18 copies
Comedies 16 copies
A Florentine Tragedy 16 copies, 3 reviews
Racconti 15 copies
Lady Fuckingham 15 copies, 1 review
Cuentos 15 copies
Torre de papel 15 copies
Howards End 15 copies
The Sphinx 12 copies, 1 review
The Young King 11 copies
Poemas en prosa 10 copies
Shorter Prose Pieces 10 copies, 1 review
Reviews 10 copies
La Sainte Courtisane 9 copies, 3 reviews
Stories & Fairy Tales 9 copies, 2 reviews
The Harlot's house: a poem 9 copies, 1 review
Teatro 8 copies, 1 review
Miscellanies 7 copies, 2 reviews
Oscar Wilde The Dover Reader 6 copies, 2 reviews
Oscariana 6 copies
I capolavori 5 copies
Le Portrait de Dorian Gray (Author) 5 copies
Letters to the Sphinx 5 copies, 1 review
Miscellanies 5 copies
Twee balladen 4 copies
Les Pensées 4 copies
PLAYS 4 copies
Selections from Oscar Wilde 4 copies, 2 reviews
Eros kertje 4 copies
Pensamiemtos 3 copies
Salomé / Lot in Sodom (Author) 3 copies
Miscellaneous 3 copies, 1 review
Charmides 3 copies
Wilde Oscar 3 copies
Firenzei tragédia ; A szent parázna (Author) 3 copies, 1 review
Three Tales 3 copies
Pohádky 2 copies
Lettres 2 copies
Ainsi parlait Oscar Wilde 2 copies, 1 review
Noveletes 2 copies
Gedichten 2 copies
Five Tales 2 copies
Cinco cuentos 2 copies
I racconti 2 copies
Letzte Briefe 2 copies
Salomé [1922 film] (Play) 2 copies
O Jovem Rei 2 copies
Weisheiten. 2 copies
AFORIZMA 2 copies
Fingerzeige 2 copies
Le chasseur d'opossum 2 copies, 1 review
Vested 1 copy
El maestro 1 copy
Portreti i Dorian Greit 1 copy, 1 review
f 1 copy
(all) 1 copy
The Women of Homer 1 copy, 1 review
Wyrms 1 copy
Nar Evi 1 copy
Versek 1 copy
Gondolatok 1 copy
Selections 1 copy
Essays I 1 copy
Contos Encantados (Author) 1 copy
Essays II 1 copy
Briefe II 1 copy
Echoes 1 copy
Saggi 1 copy
PAT 1 copy
Easter Day 1 copy
Apologia 1 copy
Requiescat 1 copy
Hellenism 1 copy
Ziele 1 copy
Ave! Maria 1 copy
Two tales 1 copy
Part01 1 copy
24 poesie 1 copy
Novelle 1 copy
: (1892) 1 copy
Oykuler 1 copy
Théâtre 1 copy
Panthea 1 copy
Level 2 1 copy
Bajke 1 copy
Cuentos I. Antología 1 copy, 1 review
The Satyricon (supposed translator, some editions) 3,297 copies, 31 reviews
Oscar Wilde (Subject) 1,883 copies, 9 reviews
The Making of a Poem: A Norton Anthology of Poetic Forms (Contributor) 1,175 copies, 9 reviews
The Classic Fairy Tales [Norton Critical Edition] (Contributor) 956 copies, 5 reviews
The Nation's Favourite Poems (Contributor, some editions) 600 copies, 7 reviews
The Book of Fantasy (Contributor) 565 copies, 12 reviews
A Treasury of the World's Best Loved Poems (Contributor) 494 copies, 4 reviews
Black Water: The Book of Fantastic Literature (Contributor) 478 copies, 8 reviews
The Victorian Fairytale Book (Contributor) 437 copies, 3 reviews
Critical Theory Since Plato (Contributor, some editions) 386 copies, 1 review
The Oxford Book of Modern Fairy Tales (Contributor) 350 copies, 6 reviews
Eight Great Comedies (Contributor) 340 copies, 2 reviews
100 Ghastly Little Ghost Stories (Contributor) 323 copies, 4 reviews
Ghosts: A Treasury of Chilling Tales Old & New (Contributor) 312 copies, 2 reviews
Witches & Warlocks: Tales of Black Magic, Old & New (Contributor) 271 copies, 4 reviews
24 Favorite One Act Plays (Contributor) 268 copies, 1 review
Criticism: Major Statements (Contributor) 209 copies
The Golden Treasury of Children's Literature Set (Contributor) 199 copies, 4 reviews
The Penguin Book of Irish Verse (Contributor) 184 copies
Late Victorian Gothic Tales (Contributor) 177 copies
The Importance of Being Earnest [2002 film] (Original play) 175 copies, 3 reviews
Love Letters (Contributor) 173 copies, 1 review
The Portable Victorian Reader (Contributor) 173 copies
Masterpieces of the Drama (Contributor) 171 copies, 2 reviews
The Penguin Book of Irish Fiction (Contributor) 144 copies
The Big Book of Classic Fantasy (Contributor) 142 copies, 3 reviews
Irish Tales of Terror (Contributor) 121 copies, 2 reviews
The Anarchist Reader (Author, some editions) 121 copies
Sixteen Famous British Plays (Contributor) 108 copies, 1 review
The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories (Contributor) 106 copies
The Standard Book of British and American Verse (Contributor) 105 copies, 1 review
Thirty Famous One-Act Plays (Contributor) 103 copies, 2 reviews
Chilling Ghost Short Stories (Contributor) 99 copies, 2 reviews
New Worlds for Old (Contributor) 96 copies, 1 review
Treasury Of Gothic & Supernatural (Contributor) 95 copies, 3 reviews
The Dedalus Book of Decadence (Contributor) 91 copies, 2 reviews
Dorian Gray [2009 film] (Original story) 87 copies, 1 review
Oscar Wilde (Contributor) 85 copies, 1 review
Decadent Poetry (Contributor) 84 copies
A Book of Princesses (Contributor) 81 copies
Charles Keeping's Book of Classic Ghost Stories (Contributor) 77 copies, 1 review
Victorian Fairy Tales (Contributor) 76 copies, 5 reviews
Easter Stories: Classic Tales for the Holy Season (Contributor) 76 copies, 11 reviews
The Folio Book of Comic Short Stories (Contributor) 69 copies, 1 review
Contemporary Drama: 15 Plays (Contributor) 67 copies, 1 review
Selected Stories from the 19th Century (Contributor) 66 copies, 1 review
Marvel Illustrated: The Picture of Dorian Gray (Contributor) 65 copies, 4 reviews
The Importance of Being Earnest [1952 film] (Original play) 65 copies, 2 reviews
The Mammoth Book of Fairy Tales (Contributor) 60 copies
Great Classic Stories: 22 Unabridged Classics (Contributor, some editions) 47 copies, 3 reviews
Victorian Love Stories: An Oxford Anthology (Contributor) 47 copies, 1 review
The Second Dedalus Book of Decadence the Black Feast (Contributor) 46 copies, 3 reviews
Great Tales of Terror (Contributor) 44 copies
A Century of Humour (Contributor) 42 copies
The Picture of Dorian Gray [1945 film] (Original novel) 38 copies, 1 review
The Vintage Book of Classic Crime (Contributor) 33 copies
Irish Ghost Stories (Contributor) 32 copies, 1 review
Stories To Get You Through The Night (Contributor) 31 copies
Witches, Witches, Witches (Contributor) 30 copies
The Picture of Dorian Gray: A Moral Entertainment (Original play) 30 copies, 1 review
The Big Book of Victorian Mysteries (Contributor) 28 copies, 1 review
A Book of Old Ballads (Contributor) 26 copies
Salome [libretto] (Librettist, some editions) 25 copies
A Book of Princes (Contributor) 22 copies, 1 review
Graphic Classics: Oscar Wilde (Author) 21 copies, 2 reviews
Cuentos de amor victorianos (Contributor) 19 copies
Twelve Classic One-Act Plays (Contributor) 17 copies
Specter! A Chrestomathy of Spookery (Contributor) 15 copies
All verdens fortellere (Contributor, some editions) 14 copies, 1 review
Dark Holidays: A Collection of Ghost Stories (Contributor) 13 copies, 1 review
A Little Night Reading (Contributor) 12 copies, 1 review
The chameleon (Contributor) 10 copies
Love Stories (Contributor) 9 copies
The Star Child: A Fairy Tale (Original Author) 8 copies, 1 review
A Treasury of Great Short Stories (Contributor) 7 copies
Fear! Fear! Fear! (Contributor) 6 copies
Kipling and the Critics (Contributor) 6 copies
The Moth and Other Stories (Contributor) 6 copies, 1 review
Jabberwocky 3 (Contributor) 5 copies
The Selfish Giant [2013 film] (Original book) 5 copies
Six Short Stories (Contributor) 4 copies
La poesía inglesa románticos y victorianos (Contributor) 4 copies, 1 review
Immortal Stories (Contributor) 3 copies
Best Crime Stories (Contributor) 3 copies
Tredive mesterfortællinger (Author, some editions) 3 copies, 1 review
Lady Windermere's Fan [1925 film] (Original book) 2 copies, 1 review
An Ideal Husband [1999 film] (Original play) 2 copies
Cuentos Requeridos 1 (Contributor) 1 copy
Wakacje Wśród Duchów (Contributor) 1 copy
An Ideal Husband [1947 film] (Original play) 1 copy
The Fan [1949 film] (Original story) 1 copy
Fantastyczne Opowieści (Contributor) 1 copy

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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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