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Saturday, April 1, 2017

Oscar Wilde translates G. B. Marino

G. B. Marino as Dorian Gray

The aversion of many, then the official charges against Giovan Battista Marino and Oscar Wilde were due, though with different weights and consequences, to the same reasons: arrogance, aestheticism, homosexuality, obscenity, the mixing of Christianity and paganism.

And interestingly enough, when both authors 'pretended' to justify the message of their main works according to standard morals, they basically used the same words. Marino wrote: "Smoderato piacer termina in doglia" (Adone 1.10, line 8). Wilde seems to have been translating it literally with reference to The Picture of Dorian Gray: "All excess. . . brings its own punishment" (The Complete Letters of O. W., New York: Henry Holt and Company, 2000, p. 430). Just, he more perfidiously points out: "All excess, as well as all renunciation. . ."