Oscar Wilde's wisest and wittiest quotes
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Oscar Wilde's wisest and wittiest quotes

ON November 30, 1900, Irish playwright Oscar Wilde died of meningitis in Paris, aged 46.

His short life was full of just as much wit, comedy and drama as his enduringly popular plays and novels, including The Importance of Being Earnest and The Picture of Dorian Gray.

Sadly, the end of his life, particularly being put on trial for being gay, was the stuff of tragedy.

Here we pick out some of his and his characters' sharpest and wittiest words:

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circa 1884: Irish playwright, poet and novelist Oscar Wilde (1854 - 1900), author of 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' and 'The Importance of Being Earnest'. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images) circa 1884: Irish playwright, poet and novelist Oscar Wilde (1854 - 1900), author of The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Importance of Being Earnest (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

1. "Work is the curse of the drinking classes"

2. "A cynic is man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing"

3. "I can resist everything except temptation"

4. "There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about"

5. "Be yourself; everyone else is taken"

6. "To lose one parent may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose both looks like carelessness"

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7. "All women become like their mothers. That is their tragedy. No man does, and that is his"

8. "We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars"

9. "There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That is all"

10. "Women are meant to be loved, not to be understood"

11. "To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance".