At 5 p.m. the day after his libel trial had ended in disaster, Wilde learned that an arrest warrant had been issued from Bow Street. An hour and ten minutes later there was a knock at the door of his hotel room and several plainclothes officers entered.
"Will I be allowed bail?" an obviously intoxicated Wilde asked his captors.
Witnesses said Wilde's complexion was particularly ashen when he learned from police that he would probably not receive bail before the trial. Taken to Bow Street, Wilde entered a not guilty plea, bade his friends and supporters farewell and was taken into custody.