Go Wilde in Paris

L'HOTEL

Oscar Wilde was dying — and broke. the declining writer was taken in by the proprietor of the Hôtel d'Alsace in Paris' Saint-Germain-des-Prés neighborhood, who tried to make him comfortable, plied him with Courvoisier and tolerated his snowballing bill. But Wilde still didn't spare his room's decor; he wryly observed that "my wallpaper and I are fighting a duel to the death. One or the other of us has to go." The wallpaper won that battle — Wilde died a month later of meningitis, on Nov. 30, 1900 — but it didn't win the war.

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