Below I am providing a list of quotations by Oscar Wilde. I am doing this as a buffer in time until my wit comes back to me having been stripped of much creativity lately given several recent personal and professional activities.

The quotations provided have an often common, but unique mechanism in that they normally are paradoxes (a paradox is a statement or group of sentences that contradict what we know while delivering an inherent truth). Unlike many quotations that are clever and poignant regarding a particular issue or time, Wilde's paradoxes speak to human nature that makes one think.

Oscar Wilde was an extraordinary writer, thinker, and overall character. In my way of thinking, his life was a paradox given the mores of the time and his contradictory lifestyle of being a homosexual while being married with two sons. While he is most well known for his novels, e.g., The Picture of Dorian Grey and The Trouble of Being Ernest), I expect little is known by many of his ongoing outpouring of quotations (6,021 by one count). Most of the quotations speak well of his mental acuity in understanding human nature in a thruthfull, but back-handed way by stating paradoxes.

As a side note, Oscar Wilde was buried in the Pére Lachaise cemetery in Paris with an extraordinary tombstone. When I visited his gravesite 15 years ago, it was covered with lip impressions left by passionate followers. The tomb has now been fenced in.


Now, onto a sampling of Wilde's quotations

“Quotation is a serviceable substitute for wit.”

“Everything in the world is about sex except sex. Sex is about power.”

“To define is to limit.”

“Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go.”

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

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

“The only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it.”

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

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

“Crying is for plain women. Pretty women go shopping.”
“When one is in love, one always begins by deceiving one's self, and one always ends by deceiving others. That is what the world calls a romance.”

“Anybody can sympathize with the sufferings of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathize with a friend's success.”

“A man's face is his autobiography. A woman's face is her work of fiction.”

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

“I don't want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.”

“Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.”

“I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying.”

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

“The truth is rarely pure and never simple.”

“You can never be overdressed or overeducated.”

“Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.”

The following is my personal, professional truism.

"The more complex the problem, the simpier it is to solve by making assumptions about the irrelevant variables."




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