" /> The Picture of Dorian Gray Morality Quotes - 67 Quotes with Analysis

Dorian Gray Morality Quotes

"To be good is to be in harmony with one’s self," he replied, touching the thin stem of his glass with his pale, fine-pointed fingers. "Discord is to be forced to be in harmony with others. One’s own life – that is the important thing. As for the lives of one’s neighbours, if one wishes to be a prig or a Puritan, one can flaunt one’s moral views about them, but they are not one’s concern. Besides, Individualism has really the higher aim. Modern morality consists in accepting the standard of one’s age. I consider that for any man of culture to accept the standard of his age is a form of the grossest immorality."
"But, surely, if one lives merely for one’s self, Harry, one pays a terrible price for doing so?" suggested the painter.
"Yes, we are overcharged for everything nowadays. I should fancy that the real tragedy of the poor is that they can afford nothing but self-denial. Beautiful sins, like beautiful things, are the privilege of the rich."

– Oscar Wilde

The Picture of Dorian Gray, Chapter 6. Lord Henry makes this response when asked by Basil and Dorian what did he mean by good. Henry preaches the gospel of individualism, dismisses self-denial as something for the poor, rejects modern morality and says that beautiful sins are the privilege of the wealthy. He continues his efforts to weave his corruptive web of influence over Dorian, who just before this criticized Henry’s "poisonous" theories. The very moral Basil suggests that a person will pay a terrible price for living a completely selfish life.