Author(s): Oscar Wilde
The Picture of Dorian GrayBy Oscar WildeOscar Wilde's story of a fashionable young man who sells his soul for eternal youth and beauty is one of his most popular works. Written in Wilde's characteristically dazzling manner, full of stinging epigrams and shrewd observations, the tale of Dorian Gray's moral disintegration caused something of a scandal when it first appeared in 1890. Wilde was attacked for his decadence and corrupting influence, and a few years later the book and the aesthetic/moral dilemma it presented became issues in the trials occasioned by Wilde's homosexual liaisons, trials that resulted in his imprisonment. Of the book's value as autobiography, Wilde noted in a letter, "Basil Hallward is what I think I am: Lord Henry what the world thinks me: Dorian what I would like to be--in other ages, perhaps."
A beautiful collector's edition of Oscar Wilde's truly brilliant Gothic novel
Oscar Wilde was born in Dublin in 1854. He studied there, at Trinity College, and then at Oxford, where he founded the cult of aestheticism. He published several books of stories, and one novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, in 1891. He had many successes as a playwright, first with Lady Windermere's Fan in 1892, and all his plays were performed in London between 1892 and 1895. A dazzling wit and flamboyant figure, Wilde's career was cut short after his homosexuality was exposed, and he was sentenced to two years' imprisonment in 1895. Released in 1897, he fled to France where he died a broken man in 1900.