People Who Kick Buts: Oscar Wilde
Everything popular is wrong.
- Born on October 16, 1854; passed away on November 30, 1900.
- An Irish writer and poet.
- After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, he became one of London’s most popular playwrights in the early 1890s. Today he is remembered for his epigrams, plays and the circumstances of his imprisonment, followed by his early death.
- Wilde’s parents were successful Dublin intellectuals. Their son became fluent in French and German early in life. At university Wilde read Greats; he proved himself to be an outstanding classicist, first at Dublin, then at Oxford. He became known for his involvement in the rising philosophy of aestheticism, led by two of his tutors, Walter Pater and John Ruskin. He also profoundly explored Roman Catholicism, to which he would later convert on his deathbed.
- Until he was nine, Oscar Wilde was educated at home, where a French bonne and a German governess taught him their languages.
- Wilde’s professional success was mirrored by an escalation in his feud with Queensberry. Queensberry had planned to publicly insult Wilde by throwing a bouquet of rotting vegetables onto the stage; Wilde was tipped off and had Queensberry barred from entering the theatre. Fifteen weeks later Wilde would be in prison.
- Queensberry’s lawyers thus hired private detectives to find evidence of Wilde’s homosexual liaisons to prove the fact of the accusation.