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Victorian Era & Oscar Wilde. "British history is two thousand years old, and yet in a good many ways the world has moved farther ahead since the Queen was born than it moved in all the rest of the two thousand put together." Mark Twain, London - 1897. Social Issues. Industrialism

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Victorian Era & Oscar Wilde

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Victorian Era & Oscar Wilde


"British history is two thousand years old, and yet in a good many ways the world has moved farther ahead since the Queen was born than it moved in all the rest of the two thousand put together."

Mark Twain, London - 1897


Social Issues

  • Industrialism

  • “The Woman Question”

  • Victorian Aesthetic

  • Imperialism


“The Painterly Image in Victorian Poetry”

  • The eye is the most authoritative sense the the clearest indicator of truth.

  • Creates a close connection between poetry and paintings.

  • Dante Gabriel Rossetti


SibyllaPalmifera (1866)

Under the arch of life, where love and death,      Terror and mystery, guard her shrine, I saw      Beauty enthroned; and though her gaze struck awe,I drew it in as simply as my breath.Hers are the eyes which, over and beneath      The sky and sea bend on thee, — which can draw,      By sea or sky or woman, to one law,The allotted bondman of her palm and wreath.This is that Lady Beauty, in whose praise      Thy voice and hand shake still, — long known to thee            By flying hair and fluttering hem, — the beat            Following her daily of thy heart and feet,      How passionately and irretrievably,In what fond flight, how many ways and days!


Lady Lilith (1867)


The Blessed Damozel(1846)

Heard hardly, some of her new friends      Amid their loving gamesSpoke evermore among themselves      Their virginal chaste names;And the souls mounting up to God,      Went by her like thin flames.And still she bowed herself and stooped      Out of the circling charm;Until her bosom must have made      The bar she lean'd on warm,And the lilies lay as if asleep      Along her bended arm.From the fix'd place of Heaven she saw      Time like a pulse shake fierceThrough all the worlds. Her gaze still strove      Within the gulf to pierceIts path; and now she spoke as when      The stars sang in their spheres.


Alfred Lord Tennyson


Morte de Arthur – D.G. Rossetti


D. G. Rossetti – self portrait


Queen Guinevere – Morris, Rossetti, & Madox Brown


Literature in the Victorian Era

The literature of this era expressed the fusion of pure romance to gross realism.

  • Daily Life

  • Moral Purpose

  • Idealism

  • Materialism


Oscar Wilde

How did Victorian audience react to him?

How do modern audiences react to his work?

What social issues were important in his work?


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