Collection: Oscar Wilde

Known for his flamboyant dress, his wit, and glittering conversational skill, Oscar Wilde, or Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde, was born October 16, 1854, in Dublin, Ireland. Oscar’s father was knighted in 1864 for his work as the author of a National Census Report, and was Ireland’s leading ear and eye surgeon. His mother Jane Francesca Elgee was a poet and authority on Celtic myth and folklore and a skilled linguist.

Wilde attended the Portora Royal School at Enniskillen and was awarded the Royal School Scholarship to attend Trinity College in Dublin. From there, he studied at Magdalen College in Oxford where his poem “Ravenna” won the Newdigate Prize for the best English verse composition by an Oxford undergraduate.

After graduation, he moved to London, focused on poetry and became a spokesman for aestheticism. He published his first collection, Poems, in 1881. In 1882, he traveled to New York City and embarked on an American lecture tour, delivering 140 lectures in just nine months. He also met with leading American scholars and literary figures, including Henry W. Longfellow, Oliver Wendell Holmes and Walt Whitman.

Oscar Wilde