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By Oscar Wilde

As soon as it was over, Dorian Gray rushed behind the scenes into the greenroom. When he entered the room, Sibyl Vane looked at him, and an expression of infinite joy came over her. “How badly I acted tonight, Dorian!” she cried.

“Horribly!” he answered, gazing at her in amazement. “Horribly! It was dreadful. Are you ill? You have no idea what I suffered.”

“Dorian,” she answered, “you should have understood. But you understand now, don’t you?”

“Understand what?” he asked, angrily.

“Why I was so bad tonight. Why I shall always be bad. Why I shall never act well again.”

“Dorian,” she cried, “before I knew you, acting was the one reality of my life. It was only in the theatre that I lived. You taught me what reality really is. Tonight, for the first time in my life, I saw through the silliness of the empty theatre in which I had always played. You had made me understand what love really is. Even if I could do it, it would be an offence for me to play at being in love. You have made me see that.”

He threw himself down on the sofa and turned away his face. “You have killed my love,” he muttered. “You used to stir my imagination. Now you don’t even stir my curiosity. I loved you because you were marvellous, because you had genius and intellect. You are nothing to me now. I will never see you again. Without your art you are nothing.”

The girl grew white and trembled. “You are not serious Dorian?” she murmured. “You are acting.”

“Acting! I leave that to you. You do it so well,” he answered bitterly. [...] “I am going,” he said at last in his calm clear voice. “I don’t wish to be unkind, but I can’t see you again.”

He turned and left the room. In a few moments he was out of the theatre.

He hailed a horse carriage and drove home. As he entered his bedroom, his eye fell upon the portrait Basil Hallward had painted of him and he immediately started back as if in surprise. The face appeared to him to be a little changed. He could see the lines of cruelty round the mouth as if he had just done some dreadful thing. He winced and quickly glanced into a mirror. No line like that warped his red lips. What did it mean?

Suddenly there flashed across his mind what he had said in Basil Hallward’s studio the day the picture had been finished. He had uttered a mad wish that he himself might remain young, and the portrait grow old; that his own beauty might be untarnished, and the face on the canvas bear the burden of his passions and his sins. Surely his wish had not been fulfilled? Such things were impossible. And yet, there was the picture before him, with the touch of cruelty in the mouth.

Cruelty! Had he been cruel? It was the girl’s fault, not his. He had dreamed of her as a great artist, had given his love to her because he had thought her great. Then she had disappointed him.

But the picture? What was he to say of that? It held the secret of his life, and told his story. It had taught him to love his own beauty. Would it teach him to loathe his own soul? Would he ever look at it again?

1. Dorian Gray was angry with Sibyl Vane because…

 A she did not love him anymore.

 B she gave a bad performance on


 C his friends were not impressed

with her acting.

 D she became ill.

2. Dorian came into the greenroom to tell Sibyl that…

 A he loves her because she is intelligent.

 B she means the world to him when she is not acting.

 C she should not perform when she is ill.

 D he was no longer in love with her.


3. As soon as Dorian walked into his bedroom he…

 A jumped in disbelief.

 B saw his face in a mirror.

 C remembered the wish he had made.

 D admired Basil Hallward’s beautiful


4. Dorian believes that…

 A his portrait will remain the same

as he grows old.

 B his beauty will fade as he grows old.

 C the portrait shows his soul.

 D the portrait will teach him not

to sin.

II. Writing

Choose the correct item to complete the sentence.

1. She liked the house so much that she decided to ..... an offer for it.

 A make  B do  C propose  D put

2. We can’t afford a proper aerial for our TV yet, so for the ..... being we are using

an indoor one.

 A place  B point  C space  D time

3. That green skirt doesn’t ..... your orange jacket.

 A agree  B match  C suit  D fit

4. I’m offering a ..... to anyone who finds my lost cat.

 A tip  B bribe  C change  D reward

5. She complained about a ..... in her left arm.

 A damage  B harm  C hurt  D pain

6. The ..... of interest on our bank loan is 12 %.

 A scale  B degree  C sum  D rate

Date: 2015-12-24; view: 2807

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