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Miscellaneous Aphorisms; The Soul of Man

Oscar Wilde

Book Overview: 

Oscar Wilde published two short collections of aphorisms: “A Few Maxims For The Instruction Of The Over-Educated”, in the Saturday Review newspaper, and “Phrases and Philosophies for the Use of the Young”, in the Oxford student magazine The Chameleon. By turns witty, intellectual, counter-intuitive and obtuse, the collections came to be seen by many as emblematic of Wilde’s style, and countless collections of Wildean aphorisms have since been published.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .When one is in love one begins by deceiving oneself, and one ends by deceiving others. That is what the world calls a romance.

The secret of life is never to have an emotion that is unbecoming.

No artist is ever morbid. The artist can express everything.

The development of the race depends on the development of the individual, and where self-culture has ceased to be the ideal the intellectual standard is instantly lowered and often ultimately lost.

An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all.

To elope is cowardly; it is running away from danger, and danger has become so rare in modern life.

When a man is old enough to do wrong he should be old enough to do right also.

The Book of Life begins with a man and a woman in a garden. It ends with Revelations.

In married life three is company and two is none.

Out of ourselves we can never pass, nor can there be in creat. . . Read More

Community Reviews

How one person can individually create such a diverse list of exceptionally well-written aphorisms is truly astounding. Each time I came across a particularly poignant quote, I would highlight it, but this occurred so frequently, that it seems to have defeated the purpose. If anyone is looking fo...more

"Reading and re-reading Wilde throughout the years, I notice a fact that people who praise him apparently haven't in the very least: the basic and verifiable fact that Wilde is almost always right." - Borges. Wilde is hilarious and clever.

This guy's words are delicious. Everything he writes. The first part is a compilation of his aphorisms. His wit is arguably unmatched. The second part is a philosophical treatise on the constitution of the soul. He references Jesus and allows Christ, on many levels, to be his barometer of individ...more

Past insights

It's a short book book but it's gives the tragedy of human endeavor. And the quality of art and what it brings out in us.