All Time Famous Oscar Wilde Quotes

Oscar Wilde Quotes

Oscar Wilde (1854–1900), an Irish poet and playwright, was a leading figure in the Aesthetic Movement. Known for his wit and social commentary, he authored notable works such as “The Picture of Dorian Gray” (1890), exploring the consequences of immoral actions, and “The Importance of Being Earnest” (1895), a comedic satire on Victorian society. Wilde faced personal tragedy when convicted of “gross indecency” in 1895 due to his homosexual relationships, leading to a two-year prison sentence. Following his release, he lived in exile and penned “De Profundis” (1905), a reflective letter to his former lover. Wilde died in 1900, leaving a lasting legacy for his eloquent writings and societal critiques despite the challenges he faced in his later life.

Oscar Wilde Quotes

1. “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.”
— Oscar Wilde

2. “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
— Oscar Wilde

3. “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.”
— Oscar Wilde

4. “Every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future.”
— Oscar Wilde

5. “Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.”
— Oscar Wilde

6. “Never love anyone who treats you like you’re ordinary.”
— Oscar Wilde

7. “I am so clever that sometimes I don’t understand a single word of what I am saying.”
— Oscar Wilde

8. “You can never be overdressed or overeducated.”
— Oscar Wilde

9. “The truth is rarely pure and never simple.”
— Oscar Wilde

10. “Women are meant to be loved, not to be understood.”
— Oscar Wilde

11. “An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all.”
— Oscar Wilde

12. “A good friend will always stab you in the front.”
— Oscar Wilde

13. “Death must be so beautiful. To lie in the soft brown earth, with the grasses waving above one’s head, and listen to silence. To have no yesterday, and no tomorrow. To forget time, to forgive life, to be at peace.”
— Oscar Wilde

14. “We are each our own devil, and we make this world our hell.”
— Oscar Wilde

15. “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.”
— Oscar Wilde

16. “I have the simplest tastes. I am always satisfied with the best.”
— Oscar Wilde

17. “I don’t want to go to heaven. None of my friends are there.”
— Oscar Wilde

18. “I am not young enough to know everything.”
— Oscar Wilde

19. “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.”
— Oscar Wilde

20. “I have nothing to declare except my genius.”
— Oscar Wilde

21. “No good deed goes unpunished.”
— Oscar Wilde

22. “Life is far too important a thing ever to talk seriously about.”
— Oscar Wilde

23. “The best way to appreciate your job is to imagine yourself without one.”
— Oscar Wilde

24. “Experience is merely the name men gave to their mistakes.”
— Oscar Wilde

25. “The heart was made to be broken.”
— Oscar Wilde

26. “It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.”
— Oscar Wilde

27. “Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.”
— Oscar Wilde

28. “Anybody can sympathise with the sufferings of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathise with a friend’s success.”
— Oscar Wilde

29. “The books that the world calls immoral are books that show the world its own shame.”
— Oscar Wilde

30. “Hear no evil, speak no evil, and you’ll never be invited to a party.”
— Oscar Wilde

31. “A bore is someone who deprives you of solitude without providing you with company.”
— Oscar Wilde

32. “Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.”
— Oscar Wilde

33. “You don’t love someone for their looks, or their clothes, or for their fancy car, but because they sing a song only you can hear.”
— Oscar Wilde

34. “Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.”
— Oscar Wilde

35. “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.”
— Oscar Wilde

36. “Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.”
— Oscar Wilde

37. “Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go.”
— Oscar Wilde

38. “Men marry because they are tired; women, because they are curious: both are disappointed.”
— Oscar Wilde

39. “Quotation is a serviceable substitute for wit.”
— Oscar Wilde

40. “No man is rich enough to buy back his past.”
— Oscar Wilde

41. “Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.”
— Oscar Wilde

42. “If you cannot write well, you cannot think well; if you cannot think well, others will do your thinking for you.”
— Oscar Wilde

43. “To define is to limit.”
— Oscar Wilde

44. “Whenever people agree with me I always feel I must be wrong.”
— Oscar Wilde

45. “The old believe everything, the middle-aged suspect everything, the young know everything.”
— Oscar Wilde

46. “Life is not complex. We are complex. Life is simple, and the simple thing is the right thing.”
— Oscar Wilde

47. “Everything in the world is about sex except sex. Sex is about power.”
— Oscar Wilde

48. “Never regret thy fall, O Icarus of the fearless flight For the greatest tragedy of them all Is never to feel the burning light.”
— Oscar Wilde

49. “You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit.”
— Oscar Wilde

50. “I am too fond of reading books to care to write them.”
— Oscar Wilde

51. “Society often forgives the criminal; it never forgives the dreamer.”
— Oscar Wilde

52. “The very essence of romance is uncertainty.”
— Oscar Wilde

53. “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery that mediocrity can pay to greatness.”
— Oscar Wilde

54. “A man who does not think for himself does not think at all.”
— Oscar Wilde

55. “I beg your pardon I didn’t recognise you – I’ve changed a lot.”
— Oscar Wilde

56. “Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.”
— Oscar Wilde

57. “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.”
— Oscar Wilde

58. “Life has been your art. You have set yourself to music. Your days are your sonnets.”
— Oscar Wilde

59. “A passion for pleasure is the secret of remaining young.”
— Oscar Wilde

60. “A writer is someone who has taught his mind to misbehave.”
— Oscar Wilde

61. “Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot. In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you.”
— Oscar Wilde

62. “Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead. The consciousness of loving and being loved brings a warmth and a richness to life that nothing else can bring.”
— Oscar Wilde

63. “Behind every exquisite thing that existed, there was something tragic.”
— Oscar Wilde

64. “There are moments when one has to choose between living one’s own life, fully, entirely, completely-or dragging out some false, shallow, degrading existence that the world in its hypocrisy demands.”
— Oscar Wilde

65. “For one moment our lives met, our souls touched.”
— Oscar Wilde

66. “If you don’t get everything you want, think of the things you don’t get that you don’t want.”
— Oscar Wilde

67. “Every woman is a rebel.”
— Oscar Wilde

68. “Democracy means simply the bludgeoning of the people by the people for the people.”
— Oscar Wilde

69. “I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.”
— Oscar Wilde

70. “The basis of optimism is sheer terror.”
— Oscar Wilde

71. “A little sincerity is a dangerous thing, and a great deal of it is absolutely fatal.”
— Oscar Wilde

72. “Man is many things, but he is not rational.”
— Oscar Wilde

73. “Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious.”
— Oscar Wilde

74. “To be popular one must be a mediocrity.”
— Oscar Wilde

75. “I knew nothing but shadows and I thought them to be real.”
— Oscar Wilde

76. “To regret one’s own experiences is to arrest one’s own development. To deny one’s own experiences is to put a lie into the lips of one’s own life. It is no less than a denial of the soul.”
— Oscar Wilde

77. “It is through art, and through art only, that we can realise our perfection.”
— Oscar Wilde

78. “I like talking to a brick wall- it’s the only thing in the world that never contradicts me!”
— Oscar Wilde

79. “I like men who have a future and women who have a past.”
— Oscar Wilde

80. “Arguments are to be avoided, they are always vulgar and often convincing.”
— Oscar Wilde

81. “And what sort of lives do these people, who pose as being moral, lead themselves? My dear fellow, you forget that we are in the native land of the hypocrite.”
— Oscar Wilde

82. “When I like people immensely I never tell their names to anyone. It is like surrendering a part of them. I have grown to love secrecy.”
— Oscar Wilde

83. “Humanity takes itself too seriously. It is the world’s original sin. If the cave-man had known how to laugh, History would have been different.”
— Oscar Wilde

84. “One’s real life is so often the life that one does not lead.”
— Oscar Wilde

85. “He wanted to be where no one would know who he was. He wanted to escape from himself.”
— Oscar Wilde

86. “I never put off till tomorrow what I can possibly do – the day after.”
— Oscar Wilde

87. “There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That is all.”
— Oscar Wilde

88. “A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing.”
— Oscar Wilde

89. “When a woman marries again, it is because she detested her first husband. When a man marries again, it is because he adored his first wife. Women try their luck; men risk theirs.”
— Oscar Wilde

90. “To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.”
— Oscar Wilde

91. “The most terrible thing about it is not that it breaks one’s heart – hearts are made to be broken – but that it turns one’s heart to stone.”
— Oscar Wilde

92. “People who count their chickens before they are hatched act very wisely because chickens run about so absurdly that it’s impossible to count them accurately.”
— Oscar Wilde

93. “This wallpaper is dreadful, one of us will have to go.”
— Oscar Wilde

94. “There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it.”
— Oscar Wilde

95. “In old days books were written by men of letters and read by the public. Nowadays books are written by the public and read by nobody.”
— Oscar Wilde

96. “Sin is a thing that writes itself across a man’s face. It cannot be concealed.”
— Oscar Wilde

97. “The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention.”
— Oscar Wilde

98. “One should never trust a woman who tells one her real age. A woman who would tell one that would tell one anything.”
— Oscar Wilde

99. “Being natural is simply a pose, and the most irritating pose I know.”
— Oscar Wilde

100. “Everything in moderation, including moderation.”
— Oscar Wilde

101. “With freedom, books, flowers, and the moon, who could not be happy?”
— Oscar Wilde

102. “If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they’ll kill you.”
— Oscar Wilde

103. “Its a beautiful woman’s fate to be the subject of conversation where ever she goes.”
— Oscar Wilde

104. “Whenever life sucks, remember you’re going to die someday.”
— Oscar Wilde

105. “She is very clever, too clever for a woman. She lacks the indefinable charm of weakness.”
— Oscar Wilde

106. “A woman will flirt with anybody in the world as long as other people are looking on.”
— Oscar Wilde

107. “With age comes wisdom, but sometimes age comes alone.”
— Oscar Wilde

108. “The gods are strange. It is not our vices only they make instruments to scourge us. They bring us to ruin through what in us is good, gentle, humane, loving.”
— Oscar Wilde

109. “It is perfectly monstrous,? he said, at last, ’the way people go about nowadays saying things against one behind one’s back that are absolutely and entirely true.”
— Oscar Wilde

110. “You have filled my tea with lumps of sugar, and though I asked most distinctly for bread and butter, you have given me cake. I am known for the gentleness of my disposition, and the extraordinary sweetness of my nature, but I warn you, Miss Cardew, you may go too far.”
— Oscar Wilde

111. “Every little action of the common day makes or unmakes character.”
— Oscar Wilde

112. “Success is a science; if you have the conditions, you get the result.”
— Oscar Wilde

113. “Many of the great achievements of the world were accomplished by tired and discouraged men who kept on working.”
— Oscar Wilde

114. “If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing well. If it is worth having, it is worth waiting for. If it is worth attaining, it is worth fighting for. If it is worth experiencing, it is worth putting aside time for.”
— Oscar Wilde

115. “What seems to us as bitter trials are often blessings in disguise.”
— Oscar Wilde

116. “They’ve promised that dreams can come true – but forgot to mention that nightmares are dreams, too.”
— Oscar Wilde

117. “It takes great deal of courage to see the world in all its tainted glory, and still to love it.”
— Oscar Wilde

118. “Without order nothing can exist-without chaos nothing can evolve. Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.”
— Oscar Wilde

119. “The bureaucracy is expanding to meet the needs of the expanding bureaucracy.”
— Oscar Wilde

120. “Love is a misunderstanding between two fools.”
— Oscar Wilde

121. “Two men look out a window. One sees mud, the other sees the stars.”
— Oscar Wilde

122. “Nothing worth knowing can be taught.”
— Oscar Wilde

123. “Talent borrows, genius steals!”
— Oscar Wilde

124. “I may not agree with you, but I will defend to the death your right to make an ass of yourself.”
— Oscar Wilde

125. “To do nothing at all is the most difficult thing in the world, the most difficult and the most intellectual.”
— Oscar Wilde

126. “It is absurd to divide people into good and bad. People are either charming or tedious.”
— Oscar Wilde

127. “Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence. Second marriage is the triumph of hope over experience.”
— Oscar Wilde

128. “What of Art? -It is a malady. – Love? -An Illusion. – Religion? -The fashionable substitute for Belief. – You are a sceptic. -Never! Scepticism is the beginning of Faith. – What are you? -To define is to limit.”
— Oscar Wilde

129. “When I was young I thought that money was the most important thing in life; now that I am old I know that it is.”
— Oscar Wilde

130. “Between the optimist and the pessimist, the difference is droll. The optimist sees the doughnut; the pessimist the hole!”
— Oscar Wilde

131. “Let me be surrounded by luxury, I can do without the necessities!”
— Oscar Wilde

132. “I think it’s very healthy to spend time alone. You need to know how to be alone and not be defined by another person.”
— Oscar Wilde

133. “A map of the world that does not include Utopia is not worth even glancing at, for it leaves out the one country at which Humanity is always landing. And when Humanity lands there, it looks out, and, seeing a better country, sets sail. Progress is the realisation of Utopias.”
— Oscar Wilde

134. “The aim of life is self-development. To realize one’s nature perfectly – that is what each of us is here for.”
— Oscar Wilde

135. “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars. We all have clouds above us but some see their silver linings. We all face difficulties but some of us are grateful that they aren’t worse.”
— Oscar Wilde

136. “There is only one thing in life worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.”
— Oscar Wilde

137. “The only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it.”
— Oscar Wilde

138. “A flower blossoms for its own joy.”
— Oscar Wilde

139. “Wisdom is to have dreams big enough not to lose sight when we pursue them.”
— Oscar Wilde

140. “The answers are all out there, we just need to ask the right questions.”
— Oscar Wilde

141. “Children begin by loving their parents; as they grow older they judge them; sometimes they forgive them.”
— Oscar Wilde

142. “Punctuality is the thief of time.”
— Oscar Wilde

143. “To live in this world is a rare thing; most people just exist.”
— Oscar Wilde

144. “I love acting. It is so much more real than life.”
— Oscar Wilde

145. “Work is the curse of the drinking classes.”
— Oscar Wilde

146. “The world belongs to the discontented.”
— Oscar Wilde

147. “Memory is the diary we all carry about with us.”
— Oscar Wilde

148. “It’s beauty that captures your attention. personality which captures your heart.”
— Oscar Wilde

149. “The universe is God. I am God so that means I am the universe.”
— Oscar Wilde

150. “Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess.”
— Oscar Wilde

151. “Life is a nightmare that prevents one from sleeping.”
— Oscar Wilde

152. “Discontent is the first step in the progress of a man or a nation.”
— Oscar Wilde

153. “Don’t feed the trolls; nothing fuels them so much.”
— Oscar Wilde

154. “What seems to us as bitter trials are often blessings in disguise for which we are later, in the fullness of time and understanding, very grateful for!”
— Oscar Wilde

155. “Life is too short to be in a hurry.”
— Oscar Wilde

156. “Our ambition should be to rule ourselves, the true kingdom for each one of us; and true progress is to know more, and be more, and to do more.”
— Oscar Wilde

157. “Give a man a mask and he’ll tell you the truth.”
— Oscar Wilde

158. “If you are not long, I will wait for you all my life.”
— Oscar Wilde

159. “Everyone may not be good, but there’s always something good in everyone. Never judge anyone shortly because every saint has a past and every sinner has a future.”
— Oscar Wilde

160. “I am very glad I have travelled. Travel improves the mind wonderfully, and does away with all one’s prejudices.”
— Oscar Wilde

161. “What fire does not destroy, it hardens.”
— Oscar Wilde

162. “It was only in the theatre that I lived.”
— Oscar Wilde

163. “There is no sin except stupidity.”
— Oscar Wilde

164. “Love is like a war; easy to start but hard to end and you never know where it might take you.”
— Oscar Wilde

165. “What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. And a sentimentalist, my dear Darlington, is a man who sees an absurd value in everything, and doesn’t know the market place of any single thing.”
— Oscar Wilde

166. “Between men and women there is no friendship possible. There is passion, enmity, worship, love, but no friendship.”
— Oscar Wilde

167. “Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast.”
— Oscar Wilde

168. “All art is quite useless.”
— Oscar Wilde

169. “Life is a great disappointment.”
— Oscar Wilde

170. “Life is never fair, and perhaps it is a good thing for most of us that it is not.”
— Oscar Wilde

171. “The mystery of love is greater than the mystery of death.”
— Oscar Wilde

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