Oscar Wilde was born in Dublin on October 16, 1854. His
father was a famous Irish surgeon. His mother was well
known in Dublin as a writer of verse and prose.
At school, and later at Oxford, Oscar displayed gift for art
and the humanities.
While at the university, Wilde became one of the most famous
personalities of the day: he wore his hair long, decorated his
room with different beautiful things. His witty sayings were
well known among the students.
After graduating from the university, Wilde turned his
attention to writing, travelling and lecturing.
Oscar Wilde earned the reputation of being the leader of
the Aesthetic Movement and an apostle of beauty.
His most famous works appeared over the next ten years.
The most popular are "The Happy Prince and Other Tales",
"The Picture of Dorian Gray", and his comedies "Lady
Windermere's Fan", "An Ideal Husband", "The Importance of
Wilde also wrote poems, essays, reviews, letters. He attracted
the attention of his audiences by the brilliance of his
conversation, his knowledge, and the force of his personality.
In his works, especially in his tales, he glorifies beauty, and
not only the beauty of nature or artificial beauty, buc the
beauty of devoted love. He admires unselfishness, kindness
and generosity ("The Happy Prince", "The Nightingale and the
Rose") and despises egoism and greed ("The Selfish Giant",
"The Devoted Friend"). The theme of most of his works, even
of his tales, is quite realistic. He shows the contrast between
wealth and poverty. His own sympathy for poor, labouring
people is quite evident.
At the height of his popularity and success, tragedy struck.
He was accused of immorality and sentenced to two years'
imprisonment. When released from prison in 1897, he lived
mainly on the Continent, settling later in Paris. In 1898 he
published his poem "Ballad of Reading Gaol". He died in Paris
1. When did Oscar Wilde display gift for art and the
2. What did Oscar Wilde do after graduating from the
3. What reputation did Oscar Wilde earn?
4. What did Oscar Wilde write?
5. What did he despise and what did he glorify in his
6. Why was Oscar Wilde sentenced to two years'
7. When did Oscar Wilde die?
surgeon — хирург
gift — способность, дарование
to display — показывать, проявлять
the humanities — гуманитарные науки
witty — остроумный
audience — аудитория, публика
to glorify — прославлять, восхвалять
to despise — презирать
greed — алчность, жадность
was accused of immorality — обвинен в безнравственности
sentenced to two years' imprisonment — приговорен к двум годам лишения свободы
to release from prison — освобождать из тюрьмы