The historic Grade II listed house which inspired Oscar Wilde’s play “The Importance of Being Earnest” (1895) is on sale for £14 million (A$24 million).
Wilde (1854 – 1900) based, one of the play’s main characters, Algernon Moncrieff’s bachelor pad on the property, which is at 14 Half Moon Street in London’s Mayfair.
Although Half Moon Street is now one of London’s most luxurious and sought after addresses, back in 1880s Victorian London it was a highly colourful and bohemian place, where “confirmed bachelors,” artistic types and theatre people lived and socialised.
The street was named after the raucous “Half Moon” public house which stood on the corner with Piccadilly. It was where Oscar Wilde spent his free time.
Here is a look inside the property which is on sale from Wetherell and Knight Frank:
The 1,529 square metre white stucco apartment was originally constructed in the early 18th century, and was initially built as a single family house.
In the early 1880s the owners, the Gannon family, subdivided the property into apartments, so-called 'bachelors chambers.'
These bachelors' chambers were popular with young men-about-town since they were directly adjacent to Flemings at No. 10. At the time, Flemings was a racy tavern with lodgings above run by Robert Fleming (now the plush and highly respectable Flemings Hotel).
Mayfair bachelors who lived in chambers on Half Moon Street included Wilde, Hugh Walpole, Aubrey Beardsley, Siegfried Sasson, Osbert Sitwell, and poet Wilfred Owen.
This part of Mayfair is repeatedly cast and mentioned in Wilde's various plays. One of the lead characters in the play, Algernon Moncrieff, lived in bachelors chambers on Half Moon Street.
The house has recently undergone a total refurbishment, resulting in brand new specification and interiors, and restoring the house to its original grandeur.
It has an entrance hall, kitchen / breakfast room, three reception rooms, four bedroom suites, cinema, gymnasium, and steam room.
It is complete with passenger lift and staircase access to all floors, two private terraces, and a balcony.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.