Père Lachaise

Oscar Wilde’s renovated grave, one year later

An unexpected outcome? Not for some.

Last November, Oscar Wilde’s grave was thoroughly renovated and all the lipstick and graffiti was removed. The renovation included installing a glass wall around the grave for conservation purposes as the plaque on Wilde’s grave has not been successful in dissuading visitors from defacing it. The plaque reads:

Respect the memory of Oscar Wilde and do not deface this tomb. It is protected by law as an historic monument and was restored in 1992.

December 8, 2011 (Photo Paris Mojo)
December 8, 2011 (Photo Paris Mojo)

A ceremony was organized to mark the event on November 30, the anniversary of Wilde’s death. Merlin Holland, Oscar Wilde’s grandson, was present and commented at the time that “some determined kissers will no doubt try to find ways of kissing the upper extremities.”

Yesterday, I learned that this scenario came true last August. Indeed, less than one year after the renovation and installation of the glass barrier, someone mounted the neighboring grave (Famille Papeil) and broke the cross while trying to access Wilde’s grave. Consequently, cemetery officials have erected a fence around the area. And, by the way, the tree was chopped down too. If that tree could talk…

October 2, 2012 (Photo Paris Mojo)
October 2, 2012 (Photo Paris Mojo)

See also

6 replies on “Oscar Wilde’s renovated grave, one year later”

I liked the grafitti and I’m glad I got some shots of it while I was there a couple of years ago. I can’t quite tell from these pictures if they gave the statue back its penis. It was creepy to think people would steal it over and over again….


That definitely changes the feeling of the gravesite doesn’t it? Although I understand why they put the glass up the fence really makes it more barren. I’m glad I was able to visit when neither was up. Of course 1 bad apple has to ruin it for everyone.


Went to the cemetary on the 30th anniversary of Jim’s death in 01, if the authorities think people are gonna travel across the ocean only to see any grave from behind a barrier, you should ask yourself, WWJD?? And I don’t mean Jesus!!!



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