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Lord Arthur Savile's Crime

3.78  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,859 Ratings  ·  143 Reviews
It was Lady Windermere's last reception before Easter, and Bentinck House was even more crowded than usual. Six Cabinet Ministers had come on from the Speaker's Levee in their stars and ribands, all the pretty women wore their smartest dresses, and at the end of the picture-gallery stood the Princess Sophia of Carlsruhe, a heavy Tartar-looking lady, with tiny black eyes an ...more
Paperback, 125 pages
Published February 15th 1993 by Wordsworth Editions Ltd (first published 1891)
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De Profundis by Oscar WildeThe Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar WildeThe Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar WildeThe Decay of Lying by Oscar WildePen, Pencil and Poison a Study in Green by Oscar Wilde
Best of Oscar Wilde
22nd out of 101 books — 7 voters
Sybil by Flora Rheta SchreiberLord Arthur Savile's Crime by Oscar WildeHis Enemy's Daughter by Terri BrisbinMy Lady Below Stairs by Mia MarloweHer Gilded Prison by Beverley Oakley
1st out of 11 books — 2 voters

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Community Reviews

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Bookworm Sean
I almost always hate parodies of the gothic genre. I love the gothic, so when someone slates it, I slate them. It’s just how these things work. But, this, this was good. Rather than completely pissing on the genre, Wilde pokes fun at it; he teases it and makes it humorous. He doesn’t make it seem absurd or ridiculous, but a little silly in places. And it’s all it good humour rather than a tasteless satire. This is a great piece of writing.

Moreover, the parody was also directed at London’s higher
I really, really enjoyed this one! This was an absolutely hilarious parody of the Gothic genre in true Oscar Wilde fashion. Highly recommend this for a short and funny introduction into Wilde's writing.
Nov 01, 2015 Hugo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
Fantástico! Com estes quatro contos fiquei ainda mais deslumbrado com o talento de Oscar Wilde em aliar o humor ao perturbador.
Read all my reviews on

I started collecting Penguin's Little Black Classics, and my random reading pilot drew this booklet.

I was never really crazy about The Picture of Dorian Grey. I read it and it wasn't bad but not as good as I expected it would be (based on raving reviews by friends). However, I was quite curious to this little story I hadn't heard about and since it's very short it can be easily read in a single sitting.

And actually I really like it. It
Jan 28, 2016 Sinem rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
nasıl da özlemişim wilde ın neşe eklenmiş hüzünlü romantizmini, bildiğimizi sandığımız dünyayı alıp bambaşka bir aleme çevirmesini....
Saoirse Sterling
Oscar Wilde is one of the few writers whose short stories I can tolerate. He had his obvious wit and his subtle humour to go along with characters that are both expressly Victorian and curiously of the new age. Intriguing tale of fortune telling that gives both pleasure and something indeed to think upon.
Katy Noyes
Aug 16, 2015 Katy Noyes rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A short story by the inimitable Wilde, and every page oozes him. You'd know his style instantly - his wit shines through.

Lord Arthur, along with all of London society, is rather taken with the palm reader who tells fortunes at an event. Unfortunately, his fortune isn't too positive - he learns he will murder someone.

Unlike most sane people though, Lord Arthur decides to get on with it, choose a victim, murder them and then get back to his fiancee. But in increasingly farcical scenarios, his int
Oscar Wilde is a great writer. I guess this is a parody to crime novels, I don't read much of crime novels, but detective stories I did, and I laughed out loud at the final page. I admit, it was a tad bit tense at the beginning for a short story, but it built up the suspense and with the gothic setting. It did fool me at first, then with Wilde's humour, you can sense that he did exaggerating the story. This is my first try on Oscar Wilde's work and I might read The Picture of Dorian Gray next... ...more
Apr 20, 2015 Dan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Presented in a lovely little black book, this is one of Oscar Wilde's less well-known short stories. Lord Arthur is attending a social event where a palm reader is present. He decides to have his palm read and is shocked to learn he is going to commit a murder. Not wishing to cause any problems to his future wife, he decides he best get it over with and starts planning to kill.

It's a dark sounding plot but really this is a comedy. Lord Arthur is clearly not the sharpest tool in the box if he ha
Apr 22, 2015 Emma rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
I have only read Wilde's Picture of Dorian Gray but just reading that one work of his, I knew that I would enjoy pretty much anything he ever wrote so here I am with Lord Arthur Savile's Crime.

We meet Lord Arthur at a party of Lady Windemere's where he meets a cheiromantist, who reads his palm. This is where Arthur discovers the awful crime is going to commit in the future and the story evolves from there on. Arthur seeks to find a way of preventing this dreadful crime, but is it a matter of fat
This was funny and hugely entertaining!
Sep 06, 2015 Brenda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, to-own
The logic of Lord Savile... LOL
Aug 19, 2012 Dagny rated it really liked it
Shelves: 19th-century
This is only for the title story, Lord Arthur Savile's Crime.

I enjoyed this story but thought the way it ended was a bit abrupt. Probably Wilde's ending is the best, but I would have either ended it before Lord Arthur joined the two women or carried on a couple of more paragraphs after he joined them.
Apr 13, 2013 Sophiee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this story because Lord Arthur Saville seemed so unhinged but in an incredibly logical way. Of course it is wonderfully written and laced with interesting, philosophical, Wildean quotes. I thoroughly recommend this and because it is a short story reading it does not take long.
Maria Carmo
Jul 07, 2014 Maria Carmo rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Like everything written by Oscar Wilde, this is a piece of art. Yet, it did not touch me much, except by the sheer absurd of the whole main story. The short story at the end is under the same influence of a weird black sense of humour.

Maria Carmo,

Lisbon 7 July 2014.
Jul 28, 2015 Elif rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story was cool, but what I really loved was the language/writing style! It was the first time reading Wilde in English and I will never read a translation again. Perfect!
Asmara Ahmed
Apr 27, 2016 Asmara Ahmed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Been a while since we danced, Mr Wilde. Shall we begin?

Well, as far as relaxing reads go, this was pretty great!

Wilde's playfulness revels in this short story and while it isn't as fun as reading his plays, it's does possess a certain otherworldly charm of its own.

The plot is ridiculously predictable but you will find yourself chortling at the protagonist's conundrum.

All in all, a great little vacation to London, definitely recommended!
Un titolo che prelude a un giallo; e forse lo è, ma in maniera inaspettata…
Un omicidio; anzi, più di uno, ma nessuno è un delitto…
Un destino annunciato; ormai stabilito a priori, eppure …
Insomma… un noir che riserva molte sorprese; un racconto che sa ironizzare con misura su certi comportamenti umani; completo e geniale; e che, nonostante la brevità, merita assolutamente le quattro stelline.

(Il testo originale a fronte mi ha permesso di godere di un inglese sciolto e facilmente comprensibile: g
Barbara Valotto
Sep 18, 2015 Barbara Valotto rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un insolito giallo che si legge in un battibaleno! Ironico, più profondo di quello che può apparire ad una veloce lettura, degno di un autore che si chiama Oscar Wilde!
May 20, 2015 Sacha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
studying for my history exam atm which is all to do with class society and the industrial revolution which is kind of the era this story is set? okay, i looked it up, it was written in 1891 which is after the industrial revolution but it still had that feel to it. also oscar wilde came up in my lectures anyway. what i'm trying to say is that i'm pretending i'm studying by reading this.

i did really enjoy it. it was an interesting look at fortune telling and how ultimately you make your own fortu
Tijl Vandersteene
Nog een goedje in de Penguin Little Black Classics reeks. Het verhaal van een huwelijk dat tot tweemaal toe wordt uitgesteld nadat de aanstaande bruidegom van een waarzegger te horen krijgt dat hij een moord zal plegen. De man besluit zijn huwelijk uit te stellen omdat zijn eer niet toelaat een moord te plegen nadat hij getrouwd is, hij wil zijn verloofde zoiets niet aandoen, de gentleman. Gezien dat uitstel voor de nodige problemen zorgt besluit hij zelf het noodlot een handje te helpen en zo s ...more
Feb 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Was tut man nicht alles, um seine Gäste zu unterhalten. Lady Windermere hat geladen und ein Handleser soll die Attraktion sein. Sehr unscheinbar wirkt der gute Mr. Podgers und seine freundlichen kleinen Charakterstudien amüsieren die Gäste zu Lady Windermeres Zufriedenheit. Nur Lord Arthur Saviles Hände scheinen von einem schrecklichen Schicksal zu erzählen. In seinen Linien steht ein Mord geschrieben.

Als Auszug einer Sammlung von Kurzgeschichten Oscar Wildes veröffentlicht bietet dies
Örjan Pelle
Sep 30, 2015 Örjan Pelle rated it really liked it
Aside from being an extremely enjoyable dark comedy. The topic that Wilde is able to address in such a short story that has such a quick pace is magnifying. It might sound that I am overthinking what is a funny tale, and maybe I am; but for me the philosophical topics of free will versus determinism and the worth of love is really significant in this book. In a way Oscar Wilde is the absolute opposite of Leo Tolstoy, who is usually associated with his extremely lengthy and serious books that exp ...more
Shekhar Ruparelia
Aug 10, 2015 Shekhar Ruparelia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What I’d expected to be a dark tale about one man’s psychological struggle to come to grips with a prediction that he was soon going to commit a murder turned out to be a witty tale; a tongue-in-cheek look at upper class London society with a fun, surprising end.

(A slightly longer and more personal review of this book appears on my blog: https://adventuresofatraveller.wordpr... Please do have a look at that too. Thanks!)
Apr 24, 2016 Daniela rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-english, own
Lord Arthur Savile má krátce před svatbou, když mu osobní chiromant lady Windermerové vyčte z ruky nemilou budoucnost - vraždu. Ano, lord Savile se má stát vrahem, a protože je to nadmíru rozumný a čestný mladý muž, rozhodne se, že svatbu odloží a spáchá vraždu ještě před ní, aby stín této nevyhnutelné události nekalil jeho manželství. Jedinou potíží je, že nemá žádného nepřítele, kterého by mohl zavraždit. Nenechá se ale odradit a sestaví seznam svých přátel a příbuzných, ze kterého po pečlivé ...more
Apr 27, 2013 Femke rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book a lot. I personally think "The Portrait of Mr. W.H." the most intriguing (although others may have thought it dull). "Lord Arthur Savile's crime" and "The Canterville Ghost" are a delight to read. "The Sphinx Without A Secret" and "The Model Millionaire" are interesting. The latter has a slightly predictable end, but is nonetheless wonderful.
Jul 31, 2015 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This short story was my first introduction to Wilde, and I really enjoyed! His writing was wonderful, the themes interesting and thought-provoking, and overall I really liked the plot! That little twist at the end was great! I give this short story a 4/5 stars!
Jul 10, 2016 Skriegh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Before i started to read any of Wilde's books, somehow i knew that i wouldn't be dissapointed. The Portrait of Dorian Gray was the Wilde's first gem for me. While reading Lord Arthur's Saville's Crime, i sensed the same black comedy as it was in Dorian Gray.
I had fun when i read The Canterville Ghost. But after all it is Oscar Wilde. You can't 'just' have fun, can you? It would be too easy.
And i am glad that i had the chance to read that naive, heartbreaking love story called 'Nightingale and
Jul 07, 2015 Lauren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
Started and finished this in half an hour. I'm ashamed to say that I've never gotten round to reading any Wilde before and I really need to sort this out. Loved it.
Apr 17, 2015 Katharina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As always Wilde uses his words with grace. This wonderful short novel about fortune-telling and destiny was funny and full of irony. Great light read!
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Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde was an Irish playwright, poet and author of numerous short stories and one novel. Known for his biting wit, and a plentitude of aphorisms, he became one of the most successful playwrights of the late Victorian era in London, and one of the greatest celebrities of his day. Several of his plays continue to be widely performed, especially The Importance of Being E ...more
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“People are so annoying. All my pianists look exactly like poets; and all my poets look exactly like pianists.” 1 likes
“And yet it was not the mystery, but the comedy of suffering that struck him; its absolute uselessness, its grotesque want of meaning. How incoherent everything seemed! How lacking in all harmony! He was amazed at the discord between the shallow optimism of the day, and the real facts of existence. He was still very young.” 1 likes
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