Edgar Allan Poe (?) — “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes”


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞



Commentary:

An advertisement in Burton’s Gentleman’s Magazine for January 1839 announces:

Field Sports and Manly Pastimes.

———

Arrangements have been made with a writer of acknowledged ability to produce in the pages of THE GENTLEMAN’S MAGAZINE, a monthly series of articles, descriptive of the various Manly Sports and Pastimes, embracing a fund of information not elsewhere attainable, and illustrated, in its course, by several hundred engravings on wood. Among others, the following subjects will be particularly exemplified:

THE ART OF GUNNING, in all its branches, including the Rifle and Pistol Shooting, with ample directions and valuable hints to the young gunner.

The Natural History of the AMERICAN GAME BIRDS.

BOATING AND SAILING, with a full description of the various fancy crafts, and an interesting account of the principal Yatch [[Yacht]] Clubs in Europe.

THE HORSE AND THE DOG, in all their varieties, with every requisite respecting Purchase, Breeding, Breaking and Keeping.

ANGLING, with an account of American Fishes.

ARCHERY, with its Customs, &c., and a History of its Rise and Progress.

QUOITS, CRICKET, RACKET, FIVES, and other Ball Games.

Forming in the whole, a valuable Cyclopedia of useful and agreeable knowledge.

We know that Poe specifically claimed credit for one portion of the series, namely the articles on Gymnastics (see Poe’s letter to J. E. Snodgrass), and a comment in a letter to W. E. Burton. In any case, the series appears to be more a creation of scissors than pen, with liberal cutting and pasting from various encylopedia and other general items.

 


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:

  • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” — reading copy

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings:

  • Text-01 — “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” — 1839-1840 — no original manuscript or fragments are known to exist (but these versions are presumably recorded in Text-02)
  • Text-02 — “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” (1839-1840 — Burton’s)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 1st Installment (Skating and The Natural History of the Dog, part I) (February 1839) (probably too early) (The sentence “Buffon, with much ingenuity, has traced out a genealogical table of all the known dogs, . . .” appears in The Cyclopedia Americana, edited by Francis Lieber, Philadelphia: Desilver, Thomas & Co., 1835, vol. IV, p. 268, in an article on “Dogs” The sentence “England, perhaps, excels all other countries . . .” appears in the same volume, p. 449, in an article on “Hounds.” The entry on “The Fox Hound” is largely taken from the article “Fox-Hounds in Great Britain for the Year 1832,” New Sporting Magazine, November 1832, vol. IV, no. 19, p. 165-167.)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 2nd Installment (The Natural History of the Dog, part II) (March 1839) (probably too early) (Greyhound from p. 84)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 3rd Installment (The Natural History of the Dog, part III) (April 1839) (probably too early)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 4th Installment (The Natural History of the Dog, part IV) (May 1839) (probably too early)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 6th Installment (The Natural History of the Dog, part V) (June 1839) (probably too early) (The first two paragraphs of the article on the Newfoundland Dog appear, verbatim, in The Sportsman’s Repository; or a Correct Deliniation of the Horse & Dog, by John Scott, London: Henry G. Bohn, 1845, p. 133-134. The opening paragraphs on the Shephard’s Dog appear, verbatim, on p. 99. An ornately engraved title page in this edition suggests that the book was originally printed in 1831, but an earlier version was printed in London by Sherwood, Gilbert, znd Piper, 1826, with an engraved title page that suggests a publication date of 1820. The Dictionary of National Biography (Great Britain, 1897) notes John Scott (1774-1827) as an engraver, commenting that his Sportsman’s Cabinet: a Correct Dilineation of the Canine Race was published in 1804 and his History and Dilineation of the Horse in 1809.)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 7th Installment (Archery) (July 1839) (attribution uncertain) (The sentence about Herodotus, and the subsequent one, seem to have been borrowed from The Hand Book of Archery, by Robert Tyas, London: Routlege, about 1837. The image of the bow and arrow of the Normans is clearly adapted from an engraving in The Sports and Pastimes of the People of England, by Joseph Strutt, 1801. The sentences “Representations of the bow occur frequently inthe Saxon MSS.” and “The bow is curiously ornamented, having the head and tail of a serpent cared at the ends; and was probably such an one as was used by the nobility” also appear in this work.)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 8th Installment (Archery) (August 1839) (attribution uncertain) The sentence “When these bows are manufactured they are put into a reflex frames in order . . .” seems to have been borrowed from The Hand Book of Archery, by Robert Tyas, noted for the previous installment.)
    • A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 9th Installment (Gymnastics and Gymnasia, Part I) (September 1839) (The two entries on Gymnastics are the only ones for which external evidence of attribution to Poe is known, see Poe’s letter of October 7, 1839, to J. E. Snodgrass, in which he mentions that "In the Octo. no: all the criticisms are mine — also the gymnastic article.” Both installments are presumably by the same author. But even these entries are almost entirely copied from other sources, in this case chiefly the London Mirror for 1826, which is the source for the engravings as well as much of the text.)
    • A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 10th Installment (Gymnastics and Gymnasia, part II) (October 1839) (see comment on part I, above.)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 11th Installment (The Game of Cricket) (November 1839) (The main paragraphs, beginning with the second paragraph, are repeated, verbatim, from the entry on Cricket in The Field Book; or, Sports and Pastimes of the United Kingdom, by William Hamilton Maxwell, London: Effingham Wilson, 1833, pp. 139-140) The engraving of a man holding his cricket bat is identical to one that appears in the book.) (attribution uncertain)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 12th Installment (The Game of Cricket) (December 1839) (attribution uncertain) (These rules are verbatim with ‘The Laws of Cricket” adopted by the Marylabone club in 1835, and published in Games and Sports, by Donald Walker, London: Thomas Hurst, 1837, pp. 227-236. The only difference is that Burton’s does not number the items under “Bets,” and the last item in this section as printed in Burton’s begins with the word "But," which is not in the other article.
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 13th Installment (Sailing) (January 1840) (attribution uncertain) (After the first paragraph, it quotes, verbatim, from British Manly Exercises, by Donald Walker, published in Philadelphia by Thomas Wardle, 1836.)
    • “A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes” - 14th Installment (Sailing) (February 1840) (attribution uncertain)

 

Reprints:

  • None

 

Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • None

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Comparative Texts:

Instream Comparative Texts:

  • None

 

Plain Text Files for Juxta:

  • None

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • None

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Bibliography:

  • Heartman, Charles F. and James R. Canny, A Bibliography of First Printings of the Writings of Edgar Allan Poe, Hattiesburg, MS: The Book Farm, 1943.
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, ed., The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe (Vols 2-3 Tales and Sketches), Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1978.

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞

[S:0 - JAS] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Misc - A Chapter on Field Sports and Manly Pastimes