Edgar Allan Poe — “The Premature Burial”





  • (narrator) - Under development.


Location - Under development.

Date - Under development.


Under development.


Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:

  • “The Premature Burial” — reading copy


Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings (full text):

  • Text-01 — “The Premature Burial” — 1844, no original manuscript or fragments are known to exist (but this version is presumably recorded in Text-02)
  • Text-02 — “The Premature Burial” — July 31, 1844 — Dollar Newspaper — (Mabbott text A)
  • Text-03 — “The Premature Burial” — 1844-1845 — (speculated copy of the Dollar Newspaper with manuscript changes by Poe. This version has not survived, but is presumably represented by text-04. Changes are slightly too significant to suggest that they were made merely in proof, although that alternative is not impossible. These changes are not so significant, however, that a new manuscript is indicated.)
  • Text-04 — “The Premature Burial” — June 14, 1845 — Broadway Journal — (Mabbott text B)
  • Text-05 — “The Premature Burial” — 1845-1849 — (speculated copy of the Broadway Journal with manuscript changes by Poe. This version has not survived, but is presumably represented by text-06. Changes are too significant to suggest merely editorial meddling, and Poe himself was not alive to make changes in proof. These changes are not so significant, however, that a new manuscript is indicated. In the case of one short paragraph, several changes revert back to the 1844 form.)
  • Text-06 — “The Premature Burial” — 1850 — WORKS — (Mabbott text C)  (This is Mabbott’s copy-text)


Manuscripts and Authorized Printings (extracts):

  • The Premature Burial” — June 1849 — extract of last paragraph in “Marginalia” Southern Literary Messenger — (Mabbott text D)



  • “Burying Alive” — August 1844 — The Rover (New York)  (an article which included reprints of ten paragraphs of the story)
  • “The Premature Burial” — April 16, 1845 — Boston Cultivator  (acknowledged as reprinted from the Broadway Journal) (interestingly, the Boston Cultivator prints it in a section called the “Ladies’ Department”)
  • “The Premature Burial” — June 20, 1845 — Charleston Mercury  (conclusion)
  • “The Premature Burial” — July 8 and 9, 1845 — Boston Daily Mail  (excerpts reprinted anonymously from the Broadway Journal) (This reprint noted by K. Ljungquist, 1997, p. 195n24.)
  • “The Premature Burial” — 1867 — Prose Tales of Edgar Allan Poe, first series (New York: W. J. Widdleton), pp. 325-338 (This collection is extracted from the 1850-1856 edition of Poe’s Works. It was reprinted several times.)
  • “The Premature Burial” — 1874 — Works of Edgar A. Poe, edited by J. H. Ingram, vol. 1, pp. 236-250 (This collection was subsequently reprinted in various forms)


Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • “The Premature Burial” — 1894-1895 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 3: Tales, ed. G. E. Woodberry and E. C. Stedman, Chicago: Stone and Kimball (3:213-232)
  • The Premature Burial” — 1902 — The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 5: Tales IV, ed. J. A. Harrison, New York: T. Y. Crowell (5:255-273, and 5:327)
  • The Premature Burial” — 1978 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 3: Tales & Sketches II, ed. T. O. Mabbott, Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (3:953-972)
  • “The Premature Burial” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, ed. Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America), pp. 666-679


Comparative and Study Texts:

Instream Comparative and Study Texts:


Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • “L‘Enterrement Prématuré” — 1877 — in Les Folies Amoureuses, Paris: E. Dentu  (French translation by Catulle Mendés)
  • “[The Premature Burial]” — 1881 — Underliga historier (Stockholm)  (Swedish translation, noted by Anderson, p. 54)
  • “L‘inhumation  prématurée” — 1882 — Contes Grotesques par Edgar Poe, Paris: Paul Ollendorff  (French translation by Émile Hennequin)
  • “Enterré vif” — 1885 — Oeuvres Choisies d‘Edgar Pöe, Paris: A. Hennuyer  (French translation by William L. Hughes)
  • “L‘ensevelissement  prématuré” — 1887 — Edgar Poë: Derniers Contes, Paris: Albert Savine  (French translation by Félix Rabbe)
  • “Enterré vivant [Buried Alive]” — 1904 — Le Système du Docteur Goudron et du Professeur Plume, Paris: Jules Rouff  (French translation by Léonora C. Herbert)
  • “L‘enterrement prématuré” — 1914 — Edgar Poe: Histories étranges et Merrveilleuses, Paris: Mercure de France (French translation by M. D. Calvocoressi)
  • “Enterré vivant” — 1934 — Les Sphinx et autres contes bizarres par Edgar Poë, Paris: Galliard (French translation by Matila C. Ghyka)
  • “L‘enterrement prématuré” — 1950 — Histories grotesques et sérieuse par Edgar Poe, Paris: Classiques Garnier  (French translation by Léon Lemonnier)
  • “The Premature Burial” — 1962 — a reading by Richard Taylor on Terror: The Son of Horror, issued on the Random Records label (M-38, side A) (running time, around 15:03) (This is a very cheaply produced 33 1/3 LP, with a single narrator speaking in a loud whispter over a background of atmospheric music played by a small orchestra. The jacket features simple black and white graphics. The narrator, who has a surprisingly high voice and a detectable Brooklyn accent, is noted as being 21 at the time of the recording. This album was initially advertised for $2.98, and 25¢ for shipping and handling. This was part of a series of 4 albums. Side B of this album contained “The Masque of the Red Death.”)
  • “The Premature Burial” — 2009 — Audio book (unabridged), read by Chris Aruffo



  • Anderson, Carl L., Poe in Northlight: The Scandanavian Response to His Life and Work, Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1973.
  • Bandy, William T., “A Source of Poe’s ‘The Premature Burial’,” American Literature, May 1947, 19:167-168
  • Booth, Wayne C., The Rhetoric of Fiction, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1961, pp. 200-204.
  • Brown, Byron K., “John Snart’s Thesaurus of Horror: An Indirect Source of Poe’s ‘The Premature Burial‘?,” American Notes & Queries, Summer 1995, 8:11-14
  • 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.
  • King, Lucille, “Notes on Poe’s Sources,” University of Texas Studies in English (1930), 10:128-134.
  • Ljungquist, Kent. P., “ ‘Valdemar’ and the ‘Frogpondians’: The Aftermath of Poe’s Boston Lyceum Appearance,” in Emersonian Circles: Essays in Honor of Joel Myerson, ed. Wesley T. Mott, Rochester: University of Rochester Press, 1997, pp. 181-206.
  • 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.
  • Wyllie, John Cooke, “A List of the Texts of Poe’s Tales,” Humanistic Studies in Honor of John Calvin Metcalf, Charlottesville: University of Virginia, 1941, pp. 322-338.


[S:0 - JAS] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Tales - The Premature Burial