Oscar Wilde and the Case of the Lipstick Tomb

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Lipstick marks have gotten a lot of wayward men in trouble over the course of history, but who knew it could lead to utter destruction?

But that was the culprit behind the slow disintegration of famed Irish writer Oscar Wilde’s tomb in Paris. The massive, modernistic tomb remained largely untouched from Wilde’s death in 1900 until 1985, when fans began leaving lipstick kiss marks on the monument in honor of the both celebrated and controversial writer.

Recently, though, the Irish government stepped up and paid for the restoration of the tomb—complete with a “kiss-proof” glass barrier around it. Of course, tourists have already started leaving lipstick marks on a tree near the tomb—which can’t be terribly good for the health of the tree.

Check out BBC.com for the details, along with what actor and Wilde admirer Rupert Everett said at the rededication.