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Lord Alfred Douglas, Oscar Wilde & Olive Custance

Lord Alfred Bruce Douglas (22 October 1870 – 20 March 1945), nicknamed Bosie, was a British author, poet and translator, better known as the intimate friend and lover of the writer Oscar Wilde. Much of his early poetry was Uranian in theme, though he tended, later in life, to distance himself from both Wilde's influence and his own role as a Uranian poet. (P: ©George Charles Beresford (1864-1938)/NPG x28098. Alfred Douglas, 1903 (©4))

Douglas was born at Ham Hill House in Worcestershire, the third son of John Douglas, 9th Marquess of Queensberry and his first wife, Sibyl née Montgomery. He was his mother's favourite child; she called him Bosie (a derivative of Boysie), a nickname which stuck for the rest of his life.

Douglas was educated at Winchester College (1884–88) and at Magdalen College, Oxford (1889–93), which he left without obtaining a degree. At Oxford, he edited an undergraduate journal The Spirit Lamp (1892-3), an activity that intensified the constant conflict between him and his father. Their relationship had always been a strained one and during the Queensberry-Wilde feud, Douglas sided with Wilde, even encouraging him to prosecute his own father for libel. In 1893, Douglas had a brief affair with George Ives.

In 1860, Douglas's grandfather, the 8th Marquess of Queensberry, had died in what was reported as a shooting accident, but his death was widely believed to have been suicide. In 1862, his widowed grandmother, Lady Queensberry, converted to Roman Catholicism and took her children to live in Paris.


Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde was an Irish writer and poet. After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, he became one of London's most popular playwrights in the early 1890s. In the summer of 1891, Oscar met Lord Alfred 'Bosie' Douglas, the third son of the Marquis of Queensberry. Bosie was well acquainted with Oscar's novel The Portrait of Dorian Gray and was an undergraduate at Oxford. They soon became lovers and were inseparable until Wilde's arrest four years later.

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Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord_Alfred_Douglas

Olive Eleanor Custance (7 February 1874 – 12 February 1944) was a British poet. She was part of the aesthetic movement of the 1890s, and a contributor to The Yellow Book. (P: Atelier George Charles Beresford, London. Olive Eleanor Custance, 1902)

She was born at 12 John Street, Berkeley Square, Mayfair, in London, the only daughter and heiress of Colonel Frederick Custance, who was a wealthy and distinguished soldier in the British army. 

Custance was bisexual. In 1901 she became involved in a lesbian relationship with writer Natalie Clifford Barney in Paris, which Barney later included in her memoirs. Custance then became engaged to George Montagu, but ran away and married Lord Alfred Douglas instead. Her father did not approve of Douglas, and the two had eloped to avoid having problems. They married on 4 March 1902. They had one child, Raymond Wilfred Sholto Douglas, born on 17 November 1902. The marriage was stormy, after Douglas became a Catholic in 1911. They separated in 1913, lived together for a time in the 1920s after Olive also converted, and then lived apart after she gave up Catholicism.

Lord Alfred Bruce Douglas (22 October 1870 – 20 March 1945), nicknamed Bosie, was a British author, poet and translator, better known as the intimate friend and lover of the writer Oscar Wilde. Much of his early poetry was Uranian in theme, though he tended, later in life, to distance himself from both Wilde's influence and his own role as a Uranian poet.

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Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olive_Custance

Oscar Wilde's  (October 16, 1854 – November 30, 1900) rich and dramatic portrayals of the human condition came during the height of the prosperity that swept through London in the Victorian Era of the late 19th century. At a time when all citizens of Britain were finally able to embrace literature the wealthy and educated could only once afford, Wilde wrote many short stories, plays and poems that continue to inspire millions around the world. (Photograph taken in 1882 by Napoleon Sarony)

By the time William Wilde, Oscar’s father, was 28, he had graduated as a doctor, completed a voyage to Madeira, Teneriffe, North Africa and the Middle East, studied at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London, written two books and been appointed medical advisor to the Irish Census of 1841. When the medical statistics were published two years later they contained data which had not been collected in any other country at the time, and as a result, William became the Assistant Commissioner to the 1851 Census. He held the same position for the two succeeding Censuses and, in 1864, he was knighted for his work on them. When William opened a Dublin practice specializing in ear and eye diseases, he felt he should make some provision for the free treatment of the city's poor population. In 1844, he founded St. Mark's Ophthalmic Hospital, built entirely at his own expense.

Before he married, William fathered three children. Henry Wilson was born in 1838, Emily in 1847 and Mary in 1849. To William's credit, he provided financial support for all of them. He paid for Henry's education and medical studies, eventually hiring him into St. Mark's Hospital as an assistant. Sadly, Mary and Emily, who were raised by William's brother, both died in a fire at the ages of 22 and 24.

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Source: http://cmgww.com/historic/wilde/index.php
Oscar Wilde wrote De Profundis while jailed for crimes against nature, or whatever trumped up charges they came up with against him. In much of it he rails against Lord Alfred Douglas; and who can blame him under the circumstances? But underneath all the accusation there's a tone of acceptance of the vicissitudes of one's life that I find truly stunning. This is my favorite of all of Mr. Wilde's works - although, I've been told by my friend Robert Patrick, author of the play Kennedy's Children, that reading a play requires a certain talent- and I've never been very good at play reading. --Aaron Fricke
Dorian’s beauty is both a blessing and a curse, but it was the artist who intrigued me the most. Basil adores Dorian and pleads with Lord Wotton not to ruin him. I was in high school when I read The Picture of Dorian Gray and Basil’s sort of hopeless crush was very familiar to me, as was its ultimate result in misery -- though none of my crushes ever ended in death! --Dianne Fox
Oh what sinister fun! A morality tale wrapped up in a story dripping with homoeroticism and hedonism. I can’t imagine how much pleasure Wilde had when he wrote this story and how much went on his head that never actually made it onto the page as a result of the laws of the time. This luscious, lusty Faustian tale is so dark and delicious; discreet when it has to be, suggestive when it wants to be. And the picture I have of Dorian Gray in my mind is that of the most beautiful man on earth—yes, we’re all suckers for a bad boy, aren’t we! --Geoffrey Knight
 
Days of Love: Celebrating LGBT History One Story at a Time by Elisa Rolle
Paperback: 760 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (July 1, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1500563323
ISBN-13: 978-1500563325
CreateSpace Store: https://www.createspace.com/4910282
Amazon (Paperback): http://www.amazon.com/dp/1500563323/?tag=elimyrevandra-20
Amazon (Kindle): http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MZG0VHY/?tag=elimyrevandra-20

Days of Love chronicles more than 700 LGBT couples throughout history, spanning 2000 years from Alexander the Great to the most recent winner of a Lambda Literary Award. Many of the contemporary couples share their stories on how they met and fell in love, as well as photos from when they married or of their families. Included are professional portraits by Robert Giard and Stathis Orphanos, paintings by John Singer Sargent and Giovanni Boldini, and photographs by Frances Benjamin Johnson, Arnold Genthe, and Carl Van Vechten among others. “It's wonderful. Laying it out chronologically is inspired, offering a solid GLBT history. I kept learning things. I love the decision to include couples broken by death. It makes clear how important love is, as well as showing what people have been through. The layout and photos look terrific.” Christopher Bram “I couldn’t resist clicking through every page. I never realized the scope of the book would cover centuries! I know that it will be hugely validating to young, newly-emerging LGBT kids and be reassured that they really can have a secure, respected place in the world as their futures unfold.” Howard Cruse “This international history-and-photo book, featuring 100s of detailed bios of some of the most forward-moving gay persons in history, is sure to be one of those bestsellers that gay folk will enjoy for years to come as reference and research that is filled with facts and fun.” Jack Fritscher


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Tags: author: alfred douglas, author: olive custance, author: oscar wilde, days of love
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