Cyril Holland

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Cyril Holland
Constance Wilde with son Cyril 1889.jpg
Cyril Wilde with his mother Constance in 1889
Cyril Wilde

(1885-06-05)5 June 1885
Died9 May 1915(1915-05-09) (aged 29)
Cause of deathKilled in action
Parent(s)Oscar Wilde
Constance Lloyd

Cyril Holland (born Cyril Wilde, 5 June 1885 – 9 May 1915) was the older of the two sons of Oscar Wilde and Constance Lloyd and brother to Vyvyan Holland.


According to his brother Vyvyan Holland’s accounts in his autobiography, Son of Oscar Wilde (1954), Oscar was a devoted and loving father to his two sons. Their childhood was a relatively happy one.[1] However, after Wilde's very public trials, conviction in 1895, and imprisonment for gross indecency, their mother Constance chose to take the family out of the spotlight.

She took the surname Holland for both the boys and herself in order to protect them from public scrutiny. She moved with the boys to Switzerland and enrolled them in an English-speaking boarding school in Germany. Oscar Wilde died in 1900; neither of his sons saw him again after he went to prison. When he was released, he went to France and never lived in England or Ireland again.

From 1899 to 1903 Cyril attended Radley College, an upper-level public school in Oxfordshire.[2] After leaving school, he became a Gentleman Cadet at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich.

Holland was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant, Royal Field Artillery, on 20 December 1905. He was promoted to Lieutenant on 20 December 1908 and served in the United Kingdom for nearly three years. He was posted to India, where he served from September 1911 until 1914 with No. 9 Ammunition Column, RFA at Secunderabad. He was promoted to Captain on 30 October 1914.[3]


When the First World War broke out, Captain Holland was posted to British forces on the Continent. He took part in the battle for Neuve-Chapelle, where he was killed in France by a German sniper on 9 May 1915, during the Battle of Festubert.[4][5] He is buried at St Vaast Post Military Cemetery, Richebourg-l'Avoué, France.[5]


  1. ^ "A Life of Concealment". Time Magazine. 27 September 1954. Retrieved 8 August 2008.
  2. ^ Radley Register, 1847-1933
  3. ^ List of Officers of the Royal Regiment of Artillery, 1862-1914
  4. ^ Introduction, Wilde, Oscar. AN IDEAL HUSBAND, H.A.S. Beane Books
  5. ^ a b CWGC :: Casualty Details, Commonwealth War Graves Commission

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