Caught My Eye

  • Even at his impoverished death, Wilde had more than 300 books with him, including:
    -a Huysmans or two,
    -publications that dealt with prison life,
    -works by Tolstoy,
    -Arthur Morrison’s "A Child of the Jago" (1896),
    -Beatrice Harraden’s "Hilda Strafford" & "Remittance Man" (1897),
    -volumes by American writers, incl. Harold Frederic,
    -"Sententiæ Artis" (1886) by Harry Quilter…"It is evident that Wilde treated his copy of Sententiæ Artis…with some contempt. This piece of hack art-criticism took a bruising when Wilde was drafting his vitriolic review of it for the Pall Mall Gazette, and…Wilde’s copy…has a badly cracked spine & bumped corners.'"
    -W. H. Mallock’s satire on modern intellectual fads, "The New Republic" (1877),

    As an aside, it is sad to note that Wilde’s bankruptcy sale, which took place at his home a month before he was sentenced to 2 yrs in jail, comprised 114 lots of personal books, some art & furniture, and drew crowds of bargain-hunters. The sale made only £600.

    (tags: literature)

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