Edgar Allan Poe — “Irene” and “The Sleeper”


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Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:

  • “The Sleeper” — reading copy

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Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings:

  • Text-01 — “Lady Irene” — about March 1830 — “Chevallie” manuscript (Although this is the earliest known manuscript, it is likely that Poe had already composed such a long poem, and wrote it out from memory, thus indicating another manuscript that has apparently not survived.)
  • Text-02 — “Irene” — 1830-1831 (and possibly earlier than Text-01), manuscript as originally composed and prepared for publication (presumably recorded in Text-03)
  • Text-03 — “Irene” — 1831 — POEMS — (Mabbott text A)  (This is Mabbott’s copy-text for “Irene”)
  • Text-04 — “Irene” — May 1836 — Southern Literary Messenger — (Mabbott text B)
  • Text-05 — “Irene, the Dead” — about January 1837 — “McCabe” manuscript — (Mabbott text C)
  • Text-06 — “The Sleeper” — May 22, 1841 — Saturday Chronicle — (Mabbott text D)
  • Text-07 — “The Sleeper” — April 18, 1842 — Poets and Poetry of America (The poem continued to appear in later editions.) — (Mabbott text E)
  • Text-08 — “The Sleeper” — February 25 and March 4, 1843 — Saturday Museum — (Mabbott text F)
    • Text-08a — “The Sleeper” — February 25, 1843
    • Text-08b — “The Sleeper” — March 4, 1841 (reprinted from February 25, 1843)
  • Text-09 — “The Sleeper” — May 3, 1845 — Broadway Journal — (Mabbott text G)
  • Text-10 — “The Sleeper” — 1845 — RAOP — (Mabbott text H)
  • Text-11 — “The Sleeper” — 1849 — manuscript revisions in J. Lorimer Graham copy of RAOP — (Mabbott text J) (This is Mabbott’s copy-text for “The Sleeper”)

 

Reprints:

  • Irene” — May 1831 — Casket  (This poem is quoted, along with two others, from Poe’s 1831 volume of Poems. According to Mabbott, Poems, 1:542, the brief introductory note is presumably by Poe’s friend Lambert A. Wilmer. Although the identical note appears in the Saturday Evening Post for May 21, 1831, only the poem “To Helen” is reprinted there, not the other two items.)
  • “Irene” — July 8, 1831 —Morning Courier and New-York Enquirer  (This poem is quoted, along with two others, from Poe’s 1831 volume of Poems. It is interesting that these are the same three poems as reprinted by the Casket for May 1831.)
  • The Sleeper” — about September 1849 — Richmond Examiner proof sheets — (the text given by Whitty matches Text-10 exactly. It may be surmised that the Examiner text was set from Poe’s copy of RAOP. Strangely, Whitty does not list the J. L. Graham copy of RAOP in his versions of this poem, although he does include references to this volume in the variants for other poems.)
  • The Sleeper” — 1850 — WORKS — Griswold reprints Text-09  (Mabbott text K)
  • “The Sleeper” — 1875 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol 3: Poems  and Essays, ed. J. H. Ingram, Edinburgh, Adam and Charles Black (3:57-58)

 

Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • “The Sleeper” — 1894-1895 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 10: Poems, ed. G. E. Woodberry and E. C. Stedman, Chicago: Stone and Kimball (10:14-16, and pp. 162-166)  (The full text of “Irene” is given in the notes)
  • The Sleeper” — 1902 — The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 7: Poems, ed. J. A. Harrison, New York: T. Y. Crowell (10:51-52, and 10:178-182)  (The full text of “Irene” is given in the notes)
  • “The Sleeper” — 1911 — The Complete Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. J. H. Whitty, Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Co. (pp. 17-18, and pp. 204-207)
  • “The Sleeper” — 1917 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Killis Campbell, Boston: Ginn and Company (pp. 63-67, and pp. 211-213)
  • “Irene” — 1925 — Armistead C. Gordon, Memories and Memorials of Gordon McCabe, Richmond  (1:20-21)  (the first printing of the McCabe manuscript. As Stovall notes, p. 218, this version contains “three verbal errors in printing and numerous changes in punctuation.”)
  • “The Sleeper” — 1965 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Floyd Stovall, Charlottesville: The University Press of Virginia (pp. 52-54, and pp. 218-225)  (In his notes, Stovall gives the full text of the 1831 “Irene”)
  • Irene” — 1969 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 1: Poems, ed. T. O. Mabbott, Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (1:179-186)
  • The Sleeper” — 1969 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 1: Poems, ed. T. O. Mabbott, Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (1:186-189)
  • “The Sleeper” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America) (pp. 64-66) (reprints the text from Stovall, 1965)

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Comparative Texts:

Instream Comparative Texts:

  • None

 

Plain Text Files for Juxta:

  • None

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Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • “La dormeuse” — dated 2009, but available in late 2008 — Poèmes d‘Edgar Allan Poe, Paris: Publibook (translation by Jean Hautepierre)

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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.
  • Hunter, W. B., “Poe’s ‘The Sleeper’ and Macbeth,” American Literature, May 1949, 20:55-57
  • Kiehl, James, “Valley of Unrest: A Major Metaphor in the Poetry of Edgar Allan Poe,” Thoth, Winter 1964, 5:42-52
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, “Poe’s ‘The Sleeper’ Again,” American Literature, November 1949, 21:339-340
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, ed., The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe (Vol 1 Poems), Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1969.

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[S:0 - JAS] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Poems - The Sleeper