Constance: The Tragic and Scandalous Life of Mrs Oscar Wilde

Published by John Murray on 8th July 2011

The marriage at the centre of the most famous scandal in the nineteenth century.

Constance and Oscar Wilde were part of a circle whose outrageous behaviour shook the foundations of nineteenth-century society. Not until the 1960s did British society see its moral framework so tested again, in terms of its attitude to homosexuality, as it did in the mauve period. Constance is the extraordinary account of their marriage played out under public scrutiny, which crashed and burned as only a celebrity marriage can.

Franny Moyle radically rewrites accepted opinion about the Wildes from both a personal and a literary perspective. Drawing on Constance’s numerous unpublished letters, she uncovers key revelations about a woman who was the victim of one of the greatest betrayals of all time. This is a compelling and moving tale of an unlikely couple caught up in a fin de siecle world unsure of its own moral footing.