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De Profundis Quotes - from the essay by Oscar Wilde


Suffering is one very long moment. We cannot divide it by seasons.
De Profundis

I have said to you to speak the truth is a painful thing. To be forced to tell lies is much worse.
De Profundis

Only good questions deserve good answers.
De Profundis

We are the zanies of sorrow. We are clowns whose hearts are broken. We are specially designed to appeal to the sense of humour.
De Profundis

When one has weighed the sun in the balance, and measured the steps of the moon, and mapped out the seven heavens, there still remains oneself. Who can calculate the orbit of his own soul
De Profundis

The bond of all companionship, whether in marriage or in friendship, is conversation.
De Profundis

If there was less sympathy in the world there would be less trouble in the world.
De Profundis

There is no reason why a man should show his life to the world. The world does not understand things.
De Profundis

A man’s very highest moment is, I have no doubt at all, when he kneels in the dust, and beats his breast, and tells all the sins of his life.
De Profundis

What is said of a man is nothing. The point is, who says it.
De Profundis

Society takes upon itself the right to inflict appalling punishments on the individual, but it also has the supreme vice of shallowness, and fails to realize what it has done.
De Profundis

Remember that the fool in the eyes of the gods and the fool in the eyes of man are very different.
De Profundis

Sins of the flesh are nothing. They are maladies for physicians to cure, if they should be cured. Sins of the soul alone are shameful.
De Profundis

We who live in prison, and in whose lives there is no event but sorrow, have to measure time by throbs of pain, and the record of bitter moments.
De Profundis

Where there is sorrow there is holy ground.
De Profundis

Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.
De Profundis

All trials are trials of one’s life, just as all sentences are sentences of death.
De Profundis

All bad art is the result of good intentions.
De Profundis



De Profundis - an essay by Oscar Wilde, Irish playwright and poet. One of the greatest love letters of all time, it was written by Wilde during his imprisonment in Reading Gaol, to Lord Alfred Douglas. Wilde wrote the letter between January and March 1897, close to the end of his imprisonment for gross indecency. Wilde was born Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde on October 16, 1854, and died November 30, 1900.


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