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The Criminal Trials of Oscar Wilde
Transcript Excerpts of the First Criminal Trial (April 26 to May 1, 1895)

Defense Witness Alfred Taylor

Taylor was examined by J. P. Grain

Alfred Taylor - I am thirty-three years of age. I am the son of a cocoa manufacturer, whose business is now being carried on as a limited liability company. Up to the age of 16 or 17 I was educated at Marlborough School, 2nd afterwards I went to a private tutor at Preston, near Brighton. I then entered the militia, going into the 4th Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers, City of London Regiment. My original intention was to 90 into the army, but on coming of age in 1883 I came into a fortune of 45,000 and have since that time had no occupation but have lived a life of pleasure.

Cross - examined by Mr. Gill

Taylor - I have no occupation. It is untrue that I was expelled from a public school for being caught in a compromising situation with a small boy in the lavatory. It is true that I used to have a number of young men living in my rooms and sleeping in the same bed.

G - Is it true that you ever went through a mock marriage with Mason?

T - Absolutely untrue.

G - Had you a woman's dress in your rooms?

T - An Eastern costume.

G - A woman's dress?

T - Yes.

G - A woman's wig?

T - I will explain. It was -

G - Had you women's stockings?

T - Yes.

G - At the time you were living in Chapel Street, were you in serious money difficulties?

T - I had just gone through the Bankruptcy Court.

G - Have you not actually made a living since your bankruptcy by procuring lads and young men for rich gentlemen whom you knew to be given to this vice?

Oscar WildeT - No.

G - Have you not extracted large sums of money from wealthy men by threatening to accuse them of immoralities?

T - No.

G - You made the acquaintance of the Parkers in the St. James's Restaurant?

T - It was outside, and I was introduced to them by a friend.

G - What did you give them your address for?

T - Well, when one makes an acquaintance and you think you will like one another -

G - Are you in the habit of speaking to young men in Piccadilly?

T - I know what you mean. No.

G - You go into Piccadilly?

T - Yes, always.

G - St. James's?

T - Yes.

G - Have you ever accosted men at the Alhambra or the Empire?

T - Never.

G - Did you know Mr. Wilde well?

T - Yes.

G - Did you tell certain lads that he was fond of boys?

T - No, never.

G - Did you know that he is?

T - I believe he is fond of young people.

G - Why did you introduce Charles Parker to Mr. Wilde?

T - I thought Mr. Wilde might use his influence to obtain for him some work on the stage.

G - Did you know a man named Marling who was concerned in the Fitzroy Street raid?

T - Yes.

G - Do you know what he is?

T - I have heard a good deal.

G - Were you and Charles Parker both arrested in that raid?

T - Yes, but we were discharged from custody.

G - What was the reason for the dinner at Kettner's?

T - It was in honour of my birthday. After dinner was over the Parkers and I went home to my rooms in Little College Street.

G - Why did you burn incense in your rooms?

T - Because I liked it.


At the close of the case for the prosecution, MR. GILL stated that he should not ask for a verdict on the Counts for Conspiracy; and the JURY were directed to find a verdict of NOT GUILTY as to those Counts, and also as to four of the other Counts, charging acts of indecency with certain of the witnesses. As to the remaining Counts of Sodomy, the JURY, being unable to agree, were discharged without returning any verdict, and the case was postponed until the next Session.

© Matt & Andrej Koymasky - 1997 / 2008 14


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