Happy Birthday, Oscar Wilde!

Wilde Reclining

The second most-read writer in the English language is also, in my opinion, the funniest. Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde was born on 16 October 1854 in Dublin, Eire. He is probably the most quotable figure in the English language as well, having coined too many clever epigrams to choose just one to represent his wit.

Oscar Wilde was a married man with two children but an affair with Lord Alfred “Bosie” Douglas led to his imprisonment for homosexuality. After two years of hard labor, he was released a broken and broke man. He moved to Paris where he died at 46 years old in 1900 from acute meningitis, following an ear infection. By some accounts, his final quip was “Either these curtains [or wallpaper, by other accounts] go or I do!”

Oscar Wilde statue in Dublin

Our greatest comic, whose life was as much (if not more of) a work of art than his plays and short stories, Wilde’s been the source, subject or merely inspiration for many films in many languages. Consider these many films, most of which formerly were gathered together in an Oscar Wilde section at the end of comedy but now float around Amoeba Hollywood’s mezzanine in various locations. If you can’t find them, ask at the info counter.

1908 – Salome

1910 – Dorian Grays Portræt

Wasp cartoon of Oscar Wilde

1911 – De bannelingen

1912 – A Woman of No Importance

1913 – The Picture of Dorian Gray

1915 – The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Picture of Dorian Grey

1916 – Lady Windermere’s Fan, The Picture of Dorian Gray

1917 – Das Bildnis des Dorian Gray

1918 – Az élet királya

The Queens are Dead

1920 – Lord Arthur Saville’s Crime, A Modern Salome

1921 – A Woman of No Importance, Villa Destin

1922 – Lord Saviles brott

Salome 1923 Nazimova

1923 – Salome

1925 – Lady Windermere’s Fan

1932 – The Importance of Being Earnest

1933 – Let’s Touch Wood

1935 – Lady Windermeres Fächer,  Ein idealer Gatte

1936 – A Woman of No Importance

1937 – The Importance of Being Earnest

1938  – The Importance of Being Earnest

1939 – The Selfish Giant, Shao nai nai de shan zi

Oscar Wilde

1943 – Lord Arthur Saville’s Crime

1944 – El abanico de Lady Windermere, The Canterville Ghost

1945 – The Picture of Dorian Gray, A Woman of No Importance

1946 – The Importance of Being Earnest

1947 – An Ideal Husband, Un marido ideal

1948 – The Story of a Bad Woman

1949 – The Fan, The Canterville Ghost

Oscar Wilde 1892

1950 – The Canterville Ghost, The Importance of Being Earnest, Al compás de tu mentira

1952 – The Importance of Being Earnest, The Model Millionaire, The Importance of Being Earnest

1953 – The Canterville Ghost, The Picture of Dorian Gray

1954 – The Man on the Flying Trapeze

1955 – The Selfish Giant, A Promise to Murder, Arthurs forbrytelse, Teatro hogareño

1957 – Voor donderdagavond twaalf uur Mylord

1958 – An Ideal Husband, Lord Arthur Savile’s Crime, the Have Gun – Will Travel episode “The Ballad of Oscar Wilde.”

1959 – Quanto Importa Ser Leal

1960 – Oscar Wilde, The Trials of Oscar Wilde (aka The Green Carnation), Lord Arthur Saville’s Crime, Lady Windermere’s waaier,  The Importance of Being Earnest, A Woman of No Importance

1961 – The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Mr Ernest, L’éventail de Lady Windermere

1962 – The Canterville Ghost, Le fantôme de Canterville, Ihanneaviomies, Spöket på Canterville, Kentervilski duh

1964 – El fantasma de Canterville, The Importance of Being Earnest, Eine Frau ohne Bedeutung, The Canterville Ghost, Una mujer sin importancia

1965 – An Ideal Husband, En florentinsk tragedi, Een florentijns treurspel

1966  –  The Canterville Ghost, Il ventaglio di Lady Windermere

1967 – Un marido ideal, The Selfish Giant, El abanico de Lady Windemere, Lord Arthur Saviles Verbrechen, Lady Windermere’s Fan, Firenzeläinen tragedia, Slavík a ruze

1968 – La importancia de llamarse Ernesto, Christmas Stories: The Selfish Giant, Duch z Canterville, Une femme sans importance, Le crime de Lord Arthur Saville

1969 – An Ideal Husband, El retrato de Dorian Gray, Eine Frau ohne Bedeutung, El crimen de Lord Arthur

Oscar Wilde in fur trim

1970 – Mein Freund Bunbury, Dorian Gray, Salomé, The Canterville Ghost

1971 – Salome, The Selfish Giant,

1972 – Oscar Wilde, Un mari ideal, Lady Windermere’s Fan, Salomè, Un millonario modelo

1973  – The Picture of Dorian Gray, Memorias de una mala mujer, Salomé, Clive Barker’s Salome

1974 – The Importance of Being Earnest, The Happy Prince, Salome, The Canterville Ghost

1975 – Lepeza ledi Vindemir , The Remarkable Rocket, O Caçador de Fantasma

1976 – The Picture of Dorian Gray, Bunbury, Keine Hochzeit ohne Ernst

1977 –  El retrato de Dorian Gray, Le portrait de Dorian Gray, Salomé

1978 – Lady Windermeres Fächer, Salomé, Lillie

Oscar Wilde in cape and hat

1980 – Una mujer sin importancia, Idealnyy muzh

1981 – Il est important d’être aimé, El abanico de Lady Windermere

1983 – The Sins of Dorian Gray, Skazka o zvezdnom malchike, Ein Mord liegt auf der Han

1984 – La importancia de llamarse Ernesto

1985 – Oscar (aka Forbidden Passion), The Importance of Being Earnest, Lady Windermere’s Fan, The Canterville Ghost

1986 – Salome, 10.000 libras, The Canterville Ghost, Un cuento de ciudad, The Importance of Being Earnest, Salome, The Importance of Being, “Cemetry Gates”

1988 – The Canterville Ghost, Salome’s Last Dance, Neskolko stranits iz zhizni prizraka

1989 – Les maris, les femmes, les amants

Wilde and Bosie

1990 – The Canterville Ghost

1991 – Prestuplenie lorda Artura, Fleshy Doll

1992 – Salome, The Importance of Being Earnest

1994 – A Man of No Importance

1995 – Odoiá

1997 – Wilde, Das Gespenst von Confettiville, Story of the Red Rose, Salomé, The Canterville Ghost, An Ideal Husband

1998 – A Importância de Ser Ernesto, The Story of the Selfish Giant, An Ideal Husband

1999 – The Happy Prince, An Ideal Husband

Monument to Oscar Wilde

2001 – The Seven Deadly Sins – Gluttony, The Canterville Ghost, Dorian

2002 – The Importance of Being Earnest, An Ideal Husband, Oscar Wilde – Wit’s End

2003 – The Selfish Giant


2004 – Happy Birthday Oscar Wilde, A Good Woman, The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Divine Comedy Song, “Absent Friends.”

2005 – Dorian, Das Gespenst von Canterville, Biography – Oscar Wilde

2007 – The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Sum of Our Choices

2008 – The Wonder, The Oscar Wilde Collection, Famous Authors – Oscar Wilde,

2009 – The Birthday of the Infanta, Dorian Gray

2010 – Die Nachtigall und die Rose, Le procès d’Oscar Wilde

2011 – A Woman of No Importance

Eric Brightwell is an adventurer, essayist, rambler, explorer, cartographer, and guerrilla gardener who is always seeking paid writing, speaking, traveling, and art opportunities. He is not interested in generating advertorials, cranking out clickbait, or laboring away in a listicle mill “for exposure.”
Brightwell has written for Angels Walk LAAmoeblogBoom: A Journal of CaliforniadiaCRITICSHidden Los Angeles, and KCET Departures. His art has been featured by the American Institute of Architects, the Architecture & Design Museum, the Craft ContemporaryForm Follows FunctionLos Angeles County Store, the book SidewalkingSkid Row Housing Trust, and 1650 Gallery. Brightwell has been featured as subject in The Los Angeles TimesHuffington PostLos Angeles MagazineLAistCurbedLAEastsider LABoing BoingLos Angeles, I’m Yours, and on Notebook on Cities and Culture. He has been a guest speaker on KCRW‘s Which Way, LA?, at Emerson College, and the University of Southern California.
Brightwell is currently writing a book about Los Angeles and you can follow him on AmebaDuolingoFacebookGoodreadsInstagramMubiand Twitter.

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