Text: Edgar Allan Poe, “Enigma [On Shakespeare],” Baltimore Saturday Visiter, February 2, 1833, p. 4, col. 1


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[page 4, near the top of column 1:]

For the Baltimore Visiter.

ENIGMA.

The noblest name in Allegory’s page,

The hand that traced inexorable rage;

A pleasing moralist whose page refined,

Displays the deepest knowledge of the mind;

A tender poet of a foreign tongue,

(Indited in the language that he sung.)

A bard of brilliant but unlicensed page

At once the shame and glory of our age,

The prince of harmony and stirling sense,

The ancient dramatist of eminence,

The bard that paints imagination’s powers,

And him whose song revives departed hours,

Once more an ancient tragic bard recall,

In boldness of design surpassing all.

These names when rightly read, a name [[make]] known

Which gathers all their glories in its own.

P.

 


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Notes:

This poem is attributed to Poe by Thomas Ollive Mabbott, who also gives the answers to the puzzles as:

line - author:

1 - Spenser

2 - Homer

3-4 - Aristotle

5-6 - Kallimachos

7-8 - Shelley

9 - Alexander Pope.

10 - Euripides

11 - Mark Akenside

12 - Samuel Rogers

13-14 - Euripidies

15-16 - William Shakespeare

As evidenced by his Tamerlane and Other Poems (1827), Poe was fond of the rhyme of “power” and “hour,” here used in plural form.


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[S:2 - BSV, 1833 (MdHi)] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Poems - Enigma [Text-02]