View of the renovated tomb of Oscar Wilde during the ceremony at the Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris November 30, 2011 [File: Charles Platiau/Reuters]

Oxford University said on Monday a golden ring given by Irish author Oscar Wilde to a close friend will be returned almost two decades after it was stolen from Magdalen College where he studied.

Dutch art detective Arthur Brand recovered the ring and it will be handed back on December 4, said Mark Blandford-Baker, home bursar at Magdalen College.

The 18-carat friendship band was jointly given by Wilde and fellow student Reginald Harding to William Ward in 1876 when they attended college.

It was stolen in 2002 by cleaner Eamonn Andrews, who sold it for 150 pounds ($194).

Its

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