The Picture of Dorian Gray is about a young man named Dorian Gray who has a portrait painted of himself. The artist who paints the picture thinks that Dorian Gray is a very handsome man. One day, Dorian Gray meets Lord Henry Wotton.

Lord Henry Wotton makes Dorian Gray believe that the only thing important in life is beauty. However, Dorian realises that he will become less beautiful as he grows older. Dorian wishes the portrait Basil painted would become old in his place. When Dorian is given the chance to sell his soul so that he can stay young beautiful forever, he takes it.

The Picture of Dorian Gray was written by the Irish writer Oscar Wilde. He also wrote the plays The Importance of Being Earnest, An Ideal Husband, and Lady Windermere’s Fan.


You can buy this story as a graded reader book (with an audio CD). It is suitable for B1 (Intermediate) level students of English. Get this book here.


portrait, noun [C], a painting, drawing, or photograph of a person
realise, verb, to know and understand something, or suddenly begin to understand it
soul, noun, [C], the part of a person that is not physical, and that contains their character, thoughts, and feelings. Many people believe that a person’s soul continues to exist after they have died [spirit]

Picture: Jonathan Mueller via Flickr, CC-BY-SA 2.0