Lord Illingworth All women become like their mothers. That is their tragedy. Mrs. Allonby No man does. That is his.
I must decline your invitation owing to a subsequent engagement.
It is well for our vanity that we slay the criminal, for if we suffered him to live he might show us what we had gained by his crime.
Moderation is a fatal thing, Lady Hunstanton. Nothing succeeds like excess.
Bad artists always admire each others work.
Punctuality is the thief of time.
Thinking is the most unhealthy thing in the world, and people die of it just as they die of any other disease.
Only my own genius.
I have nothing to declare but my genius.
It is he who has broken the bond of marriage -- not I. I only break its bondage.
To be entirely free, and at the same time, entirely dominated by law, is the eternal paradox of human life that we realise at every moment.
The fact is, you have fallen lately, Cecily, into a bad habit of thinking for yourself. You should give it up. It is not quite womanly. . . . Men don't like it.
There are only two kinds of people who are really fascinating - people who know absolutely everything, and people who know absolutely nothing.
Perhaps, after all, America never has been discovered. I myself would say that it had merely been detected.
Relations are simply a tedious pack of people, who haven't got the remotest knowledge of how to live, nor the smallest instinct about when to die.
My dear young lady, there was a great deal of truth, I dare say, in what you said, and you looked very pretty while you said it, which is much more important
The American father. . . is never seen in London. He passes his life entirely in Wall Street and communicates with his family once a month by means of a telegram in cipher.
MRS ALLONBY. They say, Lady Hunstanton, that when good Americans die they go to Paris. LADY HUNSTANTON. Indeed And when bad Americans die, where do they go to; LORD ILLINGWORTH. Oh, they go to America.
The only thing that one really knows about human nature is that it changes. Change is the one quality we can predicate of it. The systems that fail are those that rely on the permanency of human nature, and not on its growth and development.
Action is the last resource of those who know not how to dream.
In all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane.
I can stand brute force, but brute reason is quite unbearable. There is something unfair about its use. It is hitting below the intellect.
The world is a stage, but the play is badly cast.
We have been able to have fine poetry in England because the public do not read it, and consequently do not influence it. The public like to insult poets because they are individual, but once they have insulted them, they leave them alone.
There is no country in the world where machinery is so lovely as in America.
The State is to make what is useful. The individual is to make what is beautiful.
If the poor only had profiles there would be no difficulty in solving the problem of poverty
What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.
Talk to a woman as if you loved her, and to a man as if he bored you.
Simple pleasures are the last refuge of the complex.
Tennessee Williams - Oscar Wilde - George Bernard Shaw - Philippe Quinault - Lady Gregory - Henry Taylor - Henry Porter - Hannah Cowley - George Colman - Alexandre Dumas