Biography lends to death a new terror.
Life is far too important a thing ever to talk seriously about.
Science is the record of dead religions.
Seriousness is the only refuge of the shallow.
The only thing that sustains one through life is the consciousness of the immense inferiority of everybody else, and this is a feeling that I have always cultivated.
The strength of women comes from the fact that psychology cannot explain us. Men can be analyzed, women… merely adored.
The very essence of love is uncertainty.
Whenever people agree with me I always feel I must be wrong.
There is a luxury in self-reproach. When we blame ourselves, we feel that no one else has a right to blame us. It is the confession, not the priest, that gives us absolution.
Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.
America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between.
Brothers? Oh, I hate brothers. My older brother just doesn't know when to die, and my younger brothers seem to do nothing but.
Being natural is simply a pose.
The public is wonderfully tolerant. It forgives everything except genius.
One's real life is often the life that one does not lead.
Philanthropic people lose all sense of Humanity, it is their distinguishing characteristic.
The aim of life is self-development. To realize one's nature perfectly - that is what each of us is here for.
Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.
A man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies.
I think that God in creating Man somewhat overestimated his ability.
I am not young enough to know everything.
I suppose that I shall have to die beyond my means.
It is a very sad thing that nowadays there is so little useless information.
Man can believe the impossible, but man can never believe the improbable.
Paradoxically though it may seem, it is none the less true that life imitates art far more than art imitates life.
There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written or badly written.
The reason we all like to think so well of others is that we are all afraid for ourselves. The basis of optimism is sheer terror.
It is better to have a permanent income than to be fascinating.
Why was I born with such contemporaries?
Only the shallow know themselves.
The truth is rarely pure and never simple.
Children begin by loving their parents; as they grow older they judge them; sometimes they forgive them.
Whenever a man does a thoroughly stupid thing, it is always from the noblest motives.
I can believe anything, provided that it is quite incredible.
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.
Women love us for our defects. If we have enough of them, they will forgive us everything, even our intellects.
Most modern calendars mar the sweet simplicity of our lives by reminding us that each day that passes is the anniversary of some perfectly uninteresting event.
It is only about things that do not interest one that one can give really unbiased opinions, which is no doubt the reason why an unbiased opinion is always valueless.
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.
But what is the difference between literature and journalism?...Journalism is unreadable and literature is not read. That is all.
Work is the curse of the drinking class.
Do not speak ill of society, Algie. Only people who can't get in do that.
A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life.
While one should always study the method of a great artist, one should never imitate his manner. The manner of an artist is essentially individual, the method of an artist is absolutely universal. The first is personality, which no one should copy; the second is perfection, which all should aim at.
As long as war is regarded as wicked it will always have its fascinations. When it is looked upon as vulgar, it will cease to be popular.
I have nothing to declare but my genius.
There is no sin except stupidity.
Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot. In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you.
Morality, like art, means drawing a line someplace.
Eduaction is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.
Life imitates art more than art imitates life.
One should always play fairly when one has the winning cards.
We teach people how to remember, we never teach them how to grow.
I can resist anything but temptation.
Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes.
Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.
We're all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
The pure and simple truth is rarely pure and never simple.
One should absorb the colour of life, but one should never remember its details. Details are always vulgar.
Thirty-five is a very attractive age. London society is full of women of the very highest birth who have, of their own free choice, remained thirty-five for years.
A man can be happy with any woman as long as he does not love her.
Education is an admirable thing, but it is well worth remembering from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.
To be natural is such a very difficult pose to keep up.
One is tempted to define man as a rational animal who always loses his temper when he is called upon to act in accordance with the dictates of reason.
To lose one parent, Mr Worthing, may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose both looks like carelessness.
I choose my friends for their good looks, my acquaintances for their good characters, and my enemies for their good intellects. A man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies.
I like persons better than principles, and I like persons with no principles better than anything else in the world.
Work is the curse of the drinking classes.
Sometimes it takes courage to give into temptation.
I adore simple pleasures. They are the last refuge of the complex.
Art is the most intense form of individualism that the world has known.
My wallpaper and i are fighting a duel to death. One or the other has to go.
The advantage of the emotions is that they lead us astray, and the advantage of science is that it is not emotional.
The proper basis for marriage is a mutual misunderstanding.
I always like to know everything about my new friends, and nothing about my old ones.
Sin is the only real colour element left in modern life.
Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious.
Vile deeds like poison weeds bloom well in prison air, it is only what is good in man, that wastes and withers there.
Nothing can cure the soul but the senses, just as nothing can cure the senses but the soul.
The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible.
All art is at once surface and symbol. Those who go beneath the surface do so at their own peril. Those who read the symbol do so at their own peril.
It is the spectator, and not life, that art really mirrors.
Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.
When we are happy we are always good, but when we are good we are not always happy.
All art is quite useless.
Music makes one feel so romantic - at least it always gets on one's nerves - which is the same thing nowadays.
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
And the wild regrets, and the bloody sweats,None knew so well as I:For he who lives more lives than oneMore deaths than one must die.
I have the simplest of tastes. I am always satisfied with the best.
I love acting. It is so much more real than life.
One can survive everything, nowadays, except death, and live down everything except a good reputation.
Perhaps, after all, America never has been discovered. I myself would say that it had merely been detected.
The mystery of love is greater than the mystery of death.
When the gods wish to punish us, they answer our prayers.
America had often been discovered before Columbus, but it had always been hushed up.
One can always be kind to people about whom one cares nothing.
The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it. Resist it, and your soul grows sick with longing for the things it has forbidden to itself.
The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it.
I was working on the proof of one of my poems all the morning, and took out a comma. In the afternoon I put it back again.
There are many things that we would throw away if we were not afraid that others might pick them up.
The public have an insatiable curiosity to know everything. Except what is worth knowing. Journalism, conscious of this, and having tradesman-like habits, supplies their demands.
Experience is one thing you can't get for nothing.
There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.
Life is too important to be taken seriously.
Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess.
Dreamers can find their way by moonlight and their only punishment is that they see the dawn before the rest of the world.
The only thing to do with good advice is pass it on. It is never any use to oneself.
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.
Illusion is the first of all pleasures.
To get back my youth I would do anything in the world, except take exercise, get up early, or be respectable.
Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.
It is always a silly thing to give advice, but to give good advice is fatal.
Disobedience, in the eyes of anyone who has read history, is man's original virtue. It is through disobedience and rebellion that progress has been made.
Wisdom comes with winters.
I like hearing myself talk. It is one of my greatest pleasures. I often have long conversations all by myself and I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a word of what I'm saying.
A little sincerity is a dangerous thing, and a great deal of it is absolutely fatal.
The only excuse for creating something useless is that one admires it intensely.
Literature always anticipates life. It does not copy it, but moulds it to its purpose.
My own business always bores me to death; I prefer other people's.
Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.
Genius is born--not paid.
Live the wonderful life that is in you.
Oh! don't use big words. They mean so little.
Arguments are to be avoided; they are always vulgar and often convincing.
About foxhunting: The unspeakable chasing the uneatable.
To love oneself is the beginning of a life-long romance.
Success is a science; if you have the conditions, you get the result.
At twilight, nature is not without loveliness, though perhaps its chief use is to illustrate quotations from the poets.
A woman who cannot make her mistakes charming, is only a female.
A cigarette is the perfect type of a perfect pleasure. It is exquisite, and it leaves one unsatisfied. What more can one want?
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.
Well, I can't eat muffins in an agitated manner. The butter would probably get on my cuffs. One should always eat muffins quite calmly. It is the only way to eat them.
Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.
Laughter is not at all a bad beginning for a friendship; and it is by far the best ending for one.
The problem with the common person is that he is so unbearably common!
Beauty is the wonder of wonders. It is only the shallow people who do not judge by appearances.
One should either be a work of art, or wear a work of art.
Chastity is the greatest form of perversion.
...my dear boy, no woman is a genius. They are a decorative sex. They never have anything to say, but they say it charmingly. Women represent the triumph of matter over mind, just as men represent the triumph of mind over morals.
If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you.
There are only two kinds of people who are really fascinating: people who know absolutely everything, and people who know absolutely nothing.
Like dear St. Francis of Assisi I am wedded to Poverty: but in my case the marriage is not a success.
Humanity takes itself too seriously. It's the world's original sin. If the caveman had known how to laugh, history would have been different.
The only thing one never regrets are one's mistakes.
A grand passion is the privelege of people who have nothing to do.
When I was young, I thought money was the most important thing in life. Now, when I'm old, I know it is.
She is a peacock in everything but beauty.
I can't help detesting my relations. I suppose it comes from the fact that none of us can stand other people having the same faults as ourselves.
Anybody can sympathise with the suffering of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathise with a friend's success.
A woman begins by resisting a man's advances, and ends by blocking his retreat.
Religion is like a blind man looking in a black room for a black cat that isn't there, and finding it.
Knowledge would be fatal, it is the uncertainty that charms one. A mist makes things beautiful.
There is always something ridiculous about the emotions of people whom one has ceased to love.
Few of our modern novelists dare to invent a single thing. It is an open secret that they don't know how to do it.
People are very fond of giving away what they need most themselves. It is what I call the depth of generosity.
He has never written a single book, so you can imagine how much he knows.
Every portrait that is painted with feeling is a portrait of the artist, not of the sitter.
But I can't help detesting my relations. I suppose it comes from the fact that none of us can stand other people having the same faults as ourselves.
We live in an age when unnecessary things are our only necessities.
Yet each man kills the thing he lovesBy each let this be heard,Some do it with a bitter look,Some with a flattering word,The coward does it with a kiss,The brave man with a sword!
The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.
Suffering is one very long moment. We cannot divide it by seasons.
The tragedy of old age is not that one is old, but that one is young.
The secret of life is to appreciate the pleasure of being terribly, terribly deceived.
When one is in love, one always begins by deceiving one's self, and one always ends by deceiving others.
We are not sent into the world to air our moral prejudices.
Crying is the refuge of plain women, but the ruin of pretty ones.
Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone elses opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.
In America the President reigns for four years, and Journalism governs for ever and ever.
The stage is not merely the meeting place of all the arts, but is also the return of art to life.
I don't play accurately-any one can play accurately- but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life.
When one is in town one amuses oneself. When one is in the country one amuses other people. It is excessively boring.
Punctuality is the thief of time.
When critics disagree the artist is in accord with himself.
Imagination is a quality given to man to compensate for what he is not, and a sense of humaor is provided to console him from what he is.
In the world there are only two tragedies. One is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it.
People who count their chickens before they are hatched, act very wisely, because chickens run about so absurdly that it is impossible to count them accurately.
I love hearing my relations abused. It is the only thing that makes me put up with them at all.
Anybody can sympathise with the sufferings of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathise with a friend's success.
I like hearing myself talk. It is one of my greatest pleasures. I often have long conversations all by myself, and I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying.
To give an accurate description of what has never occurred is not merely the proper occupation of the historian, but the inalienable privilege of any man of parts and culture.
Beauty is a form of genius--is higher, indeed, than genius, as it needs no explanation. It 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.
The only thing that sustains one through life is the consciousness of the immense inferiority of everybody else, and this is a feeling I have always cultivated.