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Quotes by Oscar Wilde

Updated on March 30, 2013

Who was Oscar Wilde?

Oscar Wilde was born in Dublin, Ireland on October 16, 1854 to high society parents of an extravagant nature. His plays and writings were great expressions of his wit, humor, and intelligence, making him a famous icon of the Victorian era.

Oscar Wilde graduated from Oxford, where he spent his interests on classical studies. After college he toured Greece and Italy, then later settling down in London. Most famous for his plays, Wilde first published a book of poems in 1881.

He married a woman in 1884 who allowed him to devote his time and energy into writing plays, poetry, essays, and stories. Some of his most famous works produced between 1892 and 1895 include: The Importance of Being Earnest, An Ideal Husband, Lady Windermere's Fan, and A Woman of No Importance . Oscar Wilde died from cerebral meningitis on November 30, 1900 in a cheap Paris hotel, broke and alone.

Life Quotes

~ One's real life is so often the life that one does not lead. ~

~ Experience is the name every one gives to their mistakes. ~

~ I put all my genius into my life; I put only my talent into my works. ~

~ I am the only person in the world I should like to know thoroughly. ~

~ To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all. ~

~ To become a spectator of one's own life is to escape the suffering of life. ~

~ There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it. ~

~ We can have in life but one great experience at best, and the secret of life is to reproduce that experience as often as possible. ~

~In married life three is company and two none.~

Jeff Dunham and Walter talk about Marriage

Relationship and Marriage Quotes

~ A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life. ~

~ There is nothing so difficult to marry as a large nose. ~

~ Bigamy is having one wife too many. Monogamy is the same.~

~ The world has grown suspicious of anything that looks like a happily married life.~

~ Ultimately the bond of all companionship, whether in marriage or in friendship, is conversation. ~

~ Married men are horribly tedious when they are good husbands, and abominably conceited when they are not. ~

~ The one charm about marriage is that it makes a life of deception absolutely necessary for both parties. ~

~ There's nothing in the world like the devotion of a married woman. It's a thing no married man knows anything about. ~

~ When a man has once loved a woman he will do anything for her except continue to love her.~

~ Men marry because they are tired; women, because they are curious; both are disappointed. ~

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

~ Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence. Second marriage is the triumph of hope over experience. ~

~ How can a woman be expected to be happy with a man who insists on treating her as if she were a perfectly normal human being. ~

~ To love yourself is the start of a lifetime romance. ~

~ I can resist everything except temptation. ~

Quotes on Love, Emotions, and Romance

~ The heart was made to be broken. ~

~ Passion makes one think in a circle. ~

~ They spoil every romance by trying to make it last forever. ~

~ If you are not too long, I will wait here for you all my life. ~

~ Deceiving others. That is what the world calls a romance. ~

~ The advantage of the emotions is that they lead us astray. ~

~ There is always something ridiculous about the emotions of people whom one has ceased to love. ~

~ Romance should never begin with sentiment. It should begin with science and end with a settlement. ~

~ Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead. ~

~ When a love comes to an end, weaklings cry, efficient ones instantly find another love, and the wise already have one in reserve. ~

~ There is no sin except stupidity. ~

Bill Engvall ~ Here's Your Sign

Quotes to Ponder

~ Illusion is the first of all pleasures. ~

~ Only the shallow know themselves. ~

~ Nothing that is worth knowing can be taught. ~

~ I am not young enough to know everything. ~

~ Be yourself; everyone else is already taken. ~

~ Seriousness is the last refuge of the shallow. ~

~ Every saint has a past and every sinner has a future. ~

~ The pure and simple truth is rarely pure and never simple. ~

~ The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible. ~

~ I like to do all the talking myself. It saves time, and prevents arguments. ~

~ Few parents nowadays pay any regard to what their children say to them. The old fashioned respect for the young is fast dying out. ~

~ People who count their chickens before they are hatched, act very wisely, because chickens run about so absurdly that it is impossible to count them accurately. ~

Quotes about Aging

~ The tragedy of old age is not that one is old, but that one is young. ~

~ When I was young, I thought that money was the most important thing in life; now that I am old, I know it is. ~

Words of Wisdom

~ Experience is one thing you can't get for nothing. ~

~ Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.~

~ The well bred contradict other people. The wise contradict themselves.~

~ Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot. In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you. ~

Quotes about Men and Women

~ Men of thoughts should have nothing to do with action. ~

~ A man who does not think for himself does not think at all. ~

~ Man can believe the impossible, but can never believe the improbable.~

~ A man can be happy with any woman as long as he does not love her.~

~ A man's face is his autobiography. A woman's face is her work of fiction. ~

~ Talk to a woman as if you loved her, and to a man as if he bored you. ~

~ I sometimes think that God in creating man somewhat overestimated his ability.~

~ When a man is old enough to do wrong he should be old enough to do right also. ~

~ Women love us for our defects. If we have enough of them, they will forgive us everything, even our gigantic intellects. ~

~ Woman begins by resisting a man's advances and ends by blocking his retreat.~

~ By persistently remaining single a man converts himself into a permanent public temptation. ~

~ One should never trust a woman who tells one her real age. A woman who would tell one that would tell one anything. ~

~ As long as a woman can look ten years younger than her own daughter, she is perfectly satisfied. ~

~ Whenever a man does a thoroughly stupid thing, it is always from the noblest motives. ~

~ Men always want to be a woman's first love - women like to be a mans last romance. ~

~ A truly good woman comes in only two types: One who knows nothing and the other who knows everything. ~

~ All women become like their mothers. That is their tragedy. No man does. That's his. ~

~ Women are never disarmed by compliments. Men always are. That is the difference between the sexes. ~

~ The strength of women comes from the fact that psychology cannot explain us. Men can be analyzed, women merely adored. ~

~ I see when men love women. They give them but a little of their lives. But women when they love give everything. ~

~The final mystery is oneself.~

More Quotes By Oscar Wilde

~ I don't want to earn my living; I want to live. ~

~ A thing is not necessarily true because a man dies for it. ~

~ Everybody who is incapable of learning has taken to teaching.~

~ Behind every exquisite thing that existed, there was something tragic. ~

~ Pessimist: One who, when he has the choice of two evils, chooses both. ~

~ Conversation about the weather is the last refuge of the unimaginative. ~

~ No object is so beautiful that, under certain conditions, it will not look ugly. ~

~ I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying. ~

~ What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. ~

~ It is better to be beautiful than to be good, but it is better to be good than to be ugly. ~

~ If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. ~

~ If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. ~

~ A dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world. ~

~ There are many things that we would throw away if we were not afraid that others might pick them up. ~

Oscar Wilde Statue in a Park in Dublin, Ireland
Oscar Wilde Statue in a Park in Dublin, Ireland

~ A man can't be too careful in the choice of his enemies. ~


~ A true friend stabs you in the front. ~

~ This suspense is terrible. I hope it will last. ~

~ A poet can survive everything but a misprint. ~

~ Work is the curse of the drinking classes. ~

~ In all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane. ~

~ Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess. ~

~ To expect the unexpected shows a thoroughly modern intellect. ~

~ We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars. ~

~ Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go. ~

~ One should always play fairly when one has the winning cards. ~

~ Morality is simply the attitude we adopt towards people whom we personally dislike. ~

~ Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught. ~

~ Most people die of a sort of creeping common sense, and discover when it is too late that the only things one never regrets are one's mistakes. ~

~ Life imitates art far more than art imitates Life. ~


~ Memory... is the diary that we all carry about with us. ~

~ Life is never fair, and perhaps it is a good thing for most of us that it is not. ~

~ An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all. ~

~ Laughter is not at all a bad beginning for a friendship, and it is far the best ending for one.~

~ It is absurd to divide people into good and bad. People are either charming or tedious. ~

~ One can survive everything, nowadays, except death, and live down everything except a good reputation. ~

~ A pessimist is somebody who complains about the noise when opportunity knocks. ~


~ Conscience makes egotists of us all. ~

~ Nowadays to be intelligible is to be found out. ~

~ Things last either too long, or not long enough. ~

~ To believe is very dull. To doubt is intensely engrossing. ~

~ Conscience and cowardice are really the same things. ~

~ As for a spoiled life, no life is spoiled but one whose growth is arrested. ~

~ I do not approve of anything which tampers with natural ignorance. ~

~ Nowadays, all the married men live like bachelors, and all the bachelors like married men.~

~ Genius lasts longer than Beauty. That accounts for the fact that we all take such pains to over-educate ourselves. ~

~ Any preoccupation with ideas of what is right or wrong in conduct shows an arrested intellectual development. ~

~ Nothing is good in moderation. You cannot know good in anything until you have torn the heart out of it by excess. ~


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    • Lissa Mirror profile image

      Lissa Mirror 5 years ago

      Great hub! And quotations... Thanks a lot. And keep posting!

      P.S. So far, this is my favourite: "Memory... is the diary that we all carry about with us"

    • esatchel profile image

      PDGreenwell 7 years ago from Kentucky

      I've always been a quotation junkie. Will come bak to look at more of your quotation articles.

    • scarlton profile image

      scarlton 7 years ago from Boonville, NC

      It did take a while to research. Thanks for reading!

    • esatchel profile image

      PDGreenwell 7 years ago from Kentucky

      Wow that's A LOT of Oscar Wilde quotations. You are very thorough!