Dorian Gray Irony Quotes

To become the spectator of one’s own life, as Harry says, is to escape the suffering of life. I know you are surprised at my talking to you like this. You have not realized how I have developed. I was a schoolboy when you knew me. I am a man now. I have new passions, new thoughts, new ideas. I am different, but you must not like me less. I am changed, but you must always be my friend. Of course, I am very fond of Harry. But I know that you are better than he is. You are not stronger – you are too much afraid of life – but you are better. And how happy we used to be together! Don’t leave me, Basil, and don’t quarrel with me. I am what I am. There is nothing more to be said.

– Oscar Wilde

The Picture of Dorian Gray, Chapter 9. Dorian wishes to be the spectator of his own life and review his experiences and impressions like you assess a work of art. He admits to Basil that he is a changed man. But is it for the better? We think not. He speaks of indulging his "new passions, new thoughts, new ideas" brought about under the influence of self-proclaimed hedonist and unremitting pleasure seeker Lord Henry. In the new Dorian there are few signs of guilt or self-awareness or a conscience at work. He will be a spectator of his own sins as he watches them manifest themselves in the changing face of Basil’s portrait of him. Appealing to Basil to always remain his friend, he compares him with Lord Henry and tells him that he is too afraid of life. This is rather ironic, as Dorian will kill his friend Basil with a knife of Chapter 20.