The Picture of Dorian Gray

The Picture of Dorian Gray

4.06 (717,932 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Oscar Wilde's tale of a Faustian pact in Victorian England, The Picture of Dorian Gray is a both a slow-burning Gothic horror and a brilliant philosophical investigation of youth, beauty and desire.

Enthralled by his own exquisite portrait, Dorian Gray exchanges his soul for eternal youth and beauty. Influenced by his friend Lord Henry Wotton, he is drawn into a corrupt double life; indulging his desires in secret while remaining a gentleman in the eyes of polite society. Only his portrait bears the traces of his decadence. The Picture of Dorian Gray was a succes de scandale. Early readers were shocked by its hints at unspeakable sins, and the book was later used as evidence against Wilde at the Old Bailey in 1895. It has lost none of its power to fascinate and disturb.

This Penguin Classics edition is edited with an introduction and notes by Robert Mighall.

If you enjoyed The Picture of Dorian Gray, you might like Joris-Karl Huysmans' Against Nature (A Rebours) Wilde's real-life inspiration for the novel that slowly corrupts Dorian Gray, also available in Penguin Classics.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 17mm | 224g
  • PENGUIN CLASSICS
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Revised
  • 0141439572
  • 9780141439570
  • 1,112

Back cover copy

Dorian Gray has just had his portrait painted. It is a perfect likeness of the quite extraordinary beautiful young man, and it prompts him to make a mad wish for eternal youth. In the years to come, he devotes his public life to and aestheticism-and his private one to decadence and debauchery.
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Table of contents

The Picture of Dorian GrayAcknowledgements
Introduction
Chronology
Further Reading
A Note on the Text


The Picture of Dorian Gray


Appendix 1: Selected Contemporary Reviews of The Picture of Dorian Gray


Appendix 2: Introduction to the First Penguin Classics Edition, by Peter Ackroyd


Notes
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About Oscar Wilde

Born in Ireland, Wilde (1854-1900) was educated in Dublin and Oxford and became the leading exponent of aestheticism. His work includes plays, a novel, poetry and criticism. Imprisoned for homosexual acts, he died after his release in exile in Paris.
Robert Mighall has written on Gothic fiction and is the editor of Stevenson's Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde for Penguin Classics. Peter Ackroyd is a best-selling writer whose recent work includes biographies on Dickens and Blake.
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Rating details

717,932 ratings
4.06 out of 5 stars
5 38% (276,270)
4 37% (262,255)
3 19% (136,445)
2 5% (32,510)
1 1% (10,452)

Our customer reviews

I thought that this book was a brilliant classic & after reading it you can see why it is a classic. Its not to hard to read the characters are interesting and its a real page turner. The only issue was that there was one rather dry chapter in the book that was a bit force read towards the end but that was it. Definitely worth the read.show more
by Ruskin Black
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