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The Canterville Ghost By Oscar Wilde

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“The Canterville Ghost” is a humorous (Horror) short story by Oscar Wilde♥. The story is about an American family who moved to a castle haunted by the ghost of a dead English nobleman, who killed his wife and was then walled in and starved to death by his wife’s brothers. It has been adapted for the stage and screen several times.

★Summary of the Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde★

“The Canterville Ghost” begins with the sale of an old British mansion called Canterville Chase to Horace B. Otis, an American minister.

Though the former owner, Lord Canterville, warns Mr. Otis that the mansion is haunted, Mr. Otis is not worried and replies that ghosts do not exist. Soon after, Mr. Otis moves into the Chase with the rest of his family: his wife, Lucretia; his eldest son, Washington; his fifteen-year-old daughter, Virginia; and his two younger twin boys.

Upon moving in, Mrs. Otis notices a dull red stain on the ground and requests that it be cleaned.

Their housekeeper reveals that it is a bloodstain from the murder of Lady Eleanore deCanterville, who was killed in 1575 with the aid of her husband, Sir Simon de Canterville, and that it cannot be removed. She warns Mrs. Otis that Sir Simon’s guilty ghost still haunts Canterville Chase.

Dismissing the housekeeper’s story as nonsense, Washington shortly pulls out a container of Pinkerton’s Champion Stain Remover, scrubbing it onto the spot until the stain is gone. As soon as the stain is removed, lightning flashes and a peal of thunder rocks the house. The housekeeper faints in terror.

Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde

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There has been a ghost in the house for three hundred years and Lord canterville’s family have had enough of it.
“The Canterville Ghost”, written by the well known English author Oscar Wilde, is a humorous story about a ghost trying to get the attention of an American family living in his castle. This story consists of seven chapters for CBSE Class 11 English.

Mr. Otis buys Canterville Castle despite everyone warning him about how it was a foolish idea and that it was haunted. A few weeks later, on a lovely July evening, Mr. Otis and his family, shift to their new home. When they enter the avenue of Canterville Castle, spookiness fills the air around them. Suddenly, Mrs Otis sees a red stain on the floor just by the fireplace and asks Mrs Umney, the housekeeper to clean it. The old woman smiles and answers, ‘It is the blood of Lady Eleanore de Canterville, who was murdered on that spot by her husband, Sir Simon de Canterville, in 1575. Sir Simon disappeared seven years later. His body has never been found, but his ghost still haunts the Castle. The bloodstain is a tourist attraction now and it cannot be removed.’ Listening to this, Washington, the eldest son of the Otis family, wipes it off with the help of a stain remover. But as soon as the blood-stain disappears, a terrible flash of lightning lits up the room and the whole building shakes. Oscar Wilde (16 Oct., 1854 – 30 Nov., 1900) was an Anglo-Irish playwright, novelist, poet and critic. He is regarded as one of the greatest playwrights of the Victorian Era. In his lifetime he wrote nine plays, one novel and numerous Poems, Short stories and Essays. Wilde was a proponent of the Aesthetic movement, which emphasized aesthetic values more than moral or social themes. This doctrine is most clearly summarized in the phrase ‘Art for Art’s Sake’.


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