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July 03, 2012

Too many Oscar Wilde fans have kissed his tomb that it is now close to being irreparably damaged

The legendary writer, Oscar Wilde, has a tomb like no other. Thousands of kisses have been planted on his beautifully designed tomb, decorated with a monument of a flying Assyrian-style angel. Since 1999, when someone decided to plant a big, red, lipsticked kiss on it, Wilde admirers from around the world have traveled to his tomb in Paris to do the same. It’s so popular that the accumulation of grease from people’s lipsticks have slowly eroded the surface of the monument. Paris’s Irish Cultural Centre said in a statement,

The grease base of the lipstick penetrates the stone and long after the coloring pigments have faded, a grease ‘shadow’ is still visible. The tomb is close to being irreparably damaged; each cleaning has degraded some of the stone surface and rendered it more porous and has subsequently necessitated a more drastic cleaning.