Oscar Wilde - A Picture of Dorian Gray

(1854 - 1900)

One of the most considerable authors in England, leader of the Aesthetic movement of the Eighties and Nineties, excellent speaker, philosopher, poet and dramatist. He fascinated and also disgusted victorian human society with his opinions and his behaviour. He was bohemian, had inclinations to homosexuality, wrote with an undertone of satire. He wrote collections of fairy - tales The Happy Prince and Other Tales (1880), then the other one, A House of Pomegranates (1891); collections of stories Lord Arthur Savile´s Crime and Canterville Ghost. Decadent theatre play Salome was originally written in French. The other theatre plays are An Ideal Husband (1895) and The Importance of Being Earnest (the same year). This one is the most popular. He also wrote three collections of poetry, his Ballad of Reading Gaol (1898) is a magnificent thing. His only novel, A Picture of Dorian Gray was published in 1890 and is his most perfect work. We can say that A Picture of Dorian Gray is a picture of Wilde´s soul.

A Picture of Dorian Gray

Talented painter Basil Hallward got acquainted with a very, very beautiful young gentleman Dorian Gray. He was fascinated with him, with his intelligence and appearance and couldn´t live without his presence. Hallward started to paint him and one day introduced Dorian to his friend, cynical and sarcastic lord Henry Wotton. Lord Harry´s philosophy of life and living influenced Dorian a lot, so in the fit of vanity said he: "I wish I could be young and beautiful all my life, forever. I wish for the picture, which had been painted by Basil, could grow old instead of me." This Dorian´s wish came true...

Dorian fell in love with young and talented actress Sibyla Vane, mainly with her perfect expression of Shakespreare´s heroines. When she couldn´t performed love, because she experienced it, Dorian was disappointed and desert her. Sibyla was very desperate and so she commited suicide. Dorian started a decadent way of his life, his only aim was to enjoy beauty and delights. His face stayed young and beautiful in the same way as when he was twenty years old, but his picture grew old and became more and more ugly, in accordance with the number of how many young and promising boys brought he to ruin and how many girls´ hearts broke he.

One day visited him Basil, and when he tempted to improvement Dorian´s soul, Dorian in the fit of rage killed him. But he had big remorses and so he decided to destroy his picture. He took the knife (with which had he killed Basil) and rushed at the picture.

When servants opened the room, on the wall hung the picture of beautiful, young boy and on the floor lay ugly, old dead body. As they found, this wreck was Dorian Gray.

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