Nowadays we are all of us so hard up that the only pleasant things to pay are compliments. They're the only things we can pay.
Finding the meaning of life is easy. Simply get a dictionary, go to the 'L' section, and find the word 'life.'
In England ... education produces no effect whatsoever. If it did, it would prove a serious danger to the upper classes, and would probably lead to acts of violence in Grosvenor Square.
Oh, I hate the cheap severity of abstract ethics!
Self-denial is the shining sore on the leprous body of Christianity.
Every impulse we strangle will only poison us.
Life has been your art. You have set yourself to music. Your days are your sonnets.
The best revenge is to live well.
I don't want to earn my living, I want to live.
Scepticism is the beginning of Faith.
Please do not shoot the pianist. He is doing his best.
She wore far too much rouge last night and not quite enough clothes. That is always a sign of despair in a woman.
It's the spectator, and not life, that art really mirrors.
What is said of man is nothing; the point is, who says it.
Sooner or later we have all to pay for what we do.
It lies like a leper in purple, it sits like a dead thing smeared with gold.
With an evening coat and a white tie, anybody, even a stockbroker, can gain a reputation for being civilized.
With an evening coat and a white tie, as you told me once, anybody, even a stock-broker, can gain a reputation for being civilized. Well, after I had been in the room about ten minutes, talking to huge overdressed dowagers and tedious academicians, I suddenly became conscious that some one was looking at me.
I usually say what I really think. A great mistake nowadays. It makes one so liable to be misunderstood.
Religion is the fashionable substitute for belief.
Temperament is the primary requisite for the critic -- a temperament exquisitely susceptible to beauty, and to the various impressions that beauty gives us.
It is curious how vanity helps the successful man and wrecks the failure.
The form of government that is most suitable to the artist is no government at all. Authority over him and his art is ridiculous.
The only thing that ever consoles man for the stupid things he does is the praise he always gives himself for doing them.
As for omens, there is no such thing as an omen. Destiny does not send us heralds. She is too wise or too cruel for that.
The ability of the theist to misunderstand a thing is directly proportional to the obviousness of the thing.
We can forgive a man for making a useful thing as long as he does not admire it.
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.
All art is quite useless.
We should treat all the trivial things of life seriously, and all the serious things of life with sincere and studied triviality.
There is nothing that stirs in the whole world of thought to which sorrow does not vibrate in terrible and exquisite pulsation.
All sins, except a sin against itself, Love should forgive. All lives, save loveless lives, true Love should pardon.
I refuse to have a battle of wits with an unarmed man.
In all unimportant matters, style, not sincerity, is the essential.
It is only about things that do not interest one that one can give a really unbiased opinion, which is no doubt the reason why an unbiased opinion is always absolutely valueless.
My dear fellow, the way you flirt with Gwendolen is perfectly disgraceful. It is almost as disgraceful as the way Gwendolen flirts with you.
Any fool can make history, but it takes a genius to write it.
It is only when one has lost all things, that one knows that one possesses it.
There is much more before me. I have hills far steeper to climb, valleys much darker to pass through. And I have to get it all out of myself. Neither religion, morality, nor reason can help me at all.
Those whom he saved from their sins are saved simply for beautiful moments in their lives.
To the artist, expression is the only mode under which he can conceive life at all. To him what is dumb is dead.
The first duty in life is to be as artificial as possible. What the second duty is no one has as yet discovered.
I must say... that I ruined myself: and that nobody, great or small, can be ruined except by his own hand.
To be really mediæval one should have no body. To be really modern one should have no soul. To be really Greek one should have no clothes.
Everything is dangerous, my dear fellow. If it wasn't so, life wouldn't be worth living.
Suffering is one very long moment. We cannot divide it by seasons.
Suffering is one very long moment. We cannot divide it by seasons. We can only record its moods, and chronicle their return. With us time itself does not progress. It revolves. It seems to circle round one center of pain.
Pleasure without Champagne is purely artificial.
Two men look out a window. One sees mud, the other sees the stars.
I don't like novels that end happily. They depress me so much.
A simile committing suicide is always a depressing spectacle.
The emotions of man are stirred more quickly than man's intelligence.
The optimist sees the donut, the pessimist sees the hole.
A pessimist is somebody who complains about the noise when opportunity knocks.
Then there was a man who said, 'I never knew what real happiness was until I got married; by then it was too late'
I think God, in creating man, somewhat overestimated his ability.
I don't want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.
I don't want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them. -- .
The man who says his wife can't take a joke, forgets that she took him.
The English have a miraculous power of turning wine into water.
I don't recognize you -- I've changed a lot.
The husbands of very beautiful women belong to the criminal classes.
There is only one real tragedy in a woman's life. The fact that her past is always her lover, and her future invariably her husband.
Behind every exquisite thing that existed, there was something tragic.
Now and then it is a joy to have one's table red with wine and roses.
You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit.
You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you have never had the courage to commit.
Life is not complex. We are complex. Life is simple, and the simple thing is the right thing.
Live! Live the wonderful life that is in you! Let nothing be lost upon you. Be always searching for new sensations. Be afraid of nothing.
Life cannot be written; life can only be lived.
We should remember that all the arts are fine arts and all the arts decorative arts.
Though forgiveness was impossible, forgetfulness was possible still, and he was determined to forget.
The night was bitter cold, and the gas-lamps round the square flared and flickered in the keen wind; but his hands were hot with fever, and his forehead burned like fire.
In life there is really no great or small thing. All things are of equal value and of equal size.
Punctuality is but the thief of time.
Mr. Worthing! Rise, sir, from this semi-recumbent posture. It is most indecorous.
It is only intellectually lost who ever argue.
They walked softly, as men do instinctively at night. The lamp cast fantastic shadows on the wall and staircase. A rising wind made some of the windows rattle.
It is not he who is revealed by the painter; it is rather the painter, who on the coloured canvas, reveals himself.
He would never again tempt innocence. He would be good.
Nowadays, people read too many books to appreciate any.
There were opium-dens, where one could buy oblivion, dens of horror where the memory of old sins could be destroyed by the madness of sins that were new.
Anybody can have common sense, povided that they have no imagination.
Because to influence a person is to give one's own soul.
Because to influence a person is to give him one's own soul. He does not think his natural thoughts, or burn with his natural passions. His virtues are not real to him. His sins, if there are such things as sins, are borrowed. He becomes an echo of some one else's music, an actor of a part that has not been written for him. The aim of life is self-development. To realize one's nature perfectly -- that is what each of us is here for. People are afraid of themselves, nowadays. They have forgotten the highest of all duties, the duty that one owes to oneself. Of course they are charitable. They feed the hungry, and clothe the beggar. But their own souls starve, and are naked. Courage has gone out of our race. Perhaps we never really had it. The terror of society, which is the basis of morals, the terror of God, which is the secret of religion -- these are the two things that govern us.
So with curious eyes and sick surmise
We watched him day by day,
And wondered if each one of us
Would end the self-same way,
For none can tell to what red Hell
His sightless soul may stray.
I want to be good. I can't bear the idea of my soul being hideous.
As for believing things, I can believe anything, provided that it is quite incredible.
It is the stupid and the ugly who have the best of it in this world.
Fashion is what one wears oneself. What is unfashionable is what other people wear.
Fashion is what one wears oneself. What is unfashionable is what other people wear. Just as vulgarity is simply the conduct of other people. And falsehoods the truths of other people. Other people are quite dreadful. The only possible society is oneself. To love oneself is the beginning of a life-long romance.
Nowadays 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.
To speak frankly, I am not in favour of long engagements. They give people the opportunity of finding out each other's character before marriage, which I think is never advisable.
The moon in her chariot of pearl.
I knew nothing but shadows and I thought them to be real.
Behind the perfection of a man's style, must lie the passion of a man's soul.
In matters of grave importance, style, not sincerity, is the vital thing.
Too much work, and no vacation, Deserves at least a small libation. So hail! my friends, and raise your glasses, Work's the curse of the drinking classes.
Rugby is a game for barbarians played by gentlemen. Football is a game for gentlemen played by barbarians.
What people call insincerity is simply a method by which we can multiply our personalities.
I only care to see doctors when I am in perfect health; then they comfort one, but when one is ill they are most depressing.
To do nothing at all is the most difficult thing in the world, the most difficult and the most intellectual.
The modern sympathy with invalids is morbid. Illness of any kind is hardly a thing to be encouraged in others.
The beautiful, passionate, ruined South, the land of magnolias and music, of roses and romance ... living on the memory of crushing defeats.
Love is a misunderstanding between two fools.
Beauty ...is of the great facts in the world like sunlight, or springtime, or the reflection in dark water of that silver shell we call the moon.
Irony is wasted on the stupid.
What men call the shadow of the body is not the shadow of the body, but is the body of the soul.
Quotes by Oscar Wilde are featured in:
Short Love Quotes
Saving Money Quotes