Text: Burton R. Pollin, “Pym (Sources),” The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe — Vol. I: Imaginary Voyages (1981/1994), pp. 17-28 (This material is protected by copyright)


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[page 17:]

SOURCES

Of all the narrative works of Poe, only the Journal of Julius Rodman exceeded Pym in the proportion of materials borrowed from miscellaneous sources and incorporated into his text, all told perhaps the equivalent of a fifth of its three hundred twenty paragraphs. Poe’s probable reasons for this practice were varied and complex: the intention to parody sea-adventure tales and the allegedly firsthand accounts called “mariners’ chronicles”; the need to vivify a maritime setting unfamiliar even to him despite his boyhood crossing of the Atlantic, a few voyages between Eastern seaboard cities, and childhood boating on the James River; the authentication of a hoax voyage to the South Polar sea; and the need to fill out a book for which the initial inspiration may have flagged. Some of the useful materials published by the Harpers lay under his eye, available as primary sources for verbatim copying or close paraphrase, e.g., Morrell’s and Reynolds’ voyages and numerous “chronicles.” Others were stored up in Poe’s retentive but rather unsystematic memory to serve as hints or suggestions for details, situations, or episodes. The direct relationship or connection of some of these must be inferred from the coincidence of several words in a parallel passage or of a few unusual but equivalent descriptive or narrative elements. But it is unjust to censure borrowings in a book which was satirical in its parodic aims and whimsical or playful in its general technique. To avoid repetitions in notes, I shall identify here the major studies which have traced the main sources rather than in the separate notes. Reference to the notes themselves (parenthetically indicated) will usually enable the reader to determine whether the “source” has been borrowed verbatim or through close paraphrase or is merely a specific hint or suggestion for the text.

There is considerable originality in the overall narrative pattern of Pym, no matter how capricious and even adventitious appears to be the construction of its major sections: the wreck of the pleasure sloop Ariel; the planned escape from a tame Nantucket environment into the exotic South Sea islands peopled by fascinatingly dangerous natives, an escape interrupted by the death-dealing mutiny of the crew of the Grampus causing the lengthy incarceration in the hold; the cruise of the Jane Guy through waters then familiar only to whalers and sealers; and finally the almost successful efforts of the Antarctic natives to exterminate all the civilized Northerners, with only Pym and Peters paradoxically surviving [page 18:] the confrontation with the great white giant and the implied whirlpool. There was little fault to be found in Poe’s helping himself, rather obviously, to material on seamanship, horripilating disasters, and authentic-sounding details of natural history. He provided a partial acknowledgment of two major sources: Benjamin Morrell’s Narrative of Four Voyages and J. N. Reynolds’ Address (16.3, 16.6-8). Poe must have sensed the spurious nature of Morrell’s best-seller of 1832, ghostwritten to the order of James Harper by Samuel Woodworth, journalist, playwright, and author of “The Old Oaken Bucket”; Woodworth embodied in a successful play of 1833 many portions of the “Fourth Voyage” from which Poe was to borrow the melodramatic groundwork for the Tsalalian treachery. Perhaps John Inman, the reader for both Morrell’s and Poe’s books, condoned with amusement Poe’s borrowing passages on the tortoise, the South Atlantic wanderings of the ship, the rookeries of nesting birds, and sea slug data.(1) Poe also made definite but less extensive use of two books by Jeremiah Reynolds, whom lie admired as the chief spokesman for America’s anticipated leadership in exploring the western and southern seas.(2) A few hundred words were taken from the Voyage of the Potomac (1835), published by the Harpers and reviewed in the June 1835 SLM.(3) Reviewed by Poe in the January 1837 SLM and even more useful to Pym was Reynolds’ propaganda book, Address on the Subject of a Surveying and Exploring Expedition; this contributed several navigational [page 19:] passages, perhaps a few details for characters and for trading objects, and Captain Guy’s yielding to Pym’s desire for Antarctic exploration.(4)

The third major source for Pym was the very popular genre of chronicles or tales of mariners, purporting to be the crude and often unedited, firsthand accounts of storms and shipwrecks, fires, mutinies, and famine. They were invariably based on verifiable occurrences first reported in journals and broadsides. The narratives were produced in collections and, individually, as cheap pamphlets in England from the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries and in nineteenth-century America. Here was a wealth of sea-lore (often capricious or fallacious) and of fearful torments for Poe’s characters on the Grampus (chaps. 4-13). Many convenient collections were available, perhaps from the wellstocked bookshop of William Gowans, Mrs. Clemm’s boarder in New York during 1837 or possibly 1838.(5) The chief one was the four-volume London set compiled by Archibald Duncan, twice reprinted in Philadelphia, The Mariner’s Chronicle, Being a Collection of the most Interesting Narratives of Shipwrecks, Fires, Famines, and other Calamities Incident to a Life of Maritime Enterprise.(6) In the United States, especially in the early 1830s, several “new” collections were issued with more recent disasters added. Three or four of these provided Poe with lurid details for his saga of storm and starvation; his citation at the close of chap. 12 from the chronicle about the brig Polly virtually divulges this fact. Yet only in 1933 and 1944 were the chronicles as obvious sources traced.(7) The following four works seem eligible as Poe sources, as the [page 20:] chart below will indicate: The Mariner’s Chronicle (New Haven: George W. Gorton, 1834); The Mariner’s Library, or Voyager’s Companion (Boston: C. Gaylord, 1834); The Mariner’s Chronicle of Shipwrecks, Fires, Famines, and other Disasters at Sea (2 vols., Boston: C. Gaylord, 1834); and finally two volumes separately paged but sometimes published as one volume, both compiled by R. Thomas (A.M.): Interesting and Authentic Narratives of the Most Remarkable Shipwrecks, plus An Authentic Account of the Most Remarkable Events: Containing the Lives of the Most Noted Pirates and Piracies (New York: Ezra Strong, 1836).(8) Except for a few of the passages from the chronicles that Poe directly quotes, such as that from “Loss of His Majesty’s Ship Centaur,” the specific influence of any of these volumes upon his text may be considered as inferential since there is a great similarity of language and even of details in many of these nautical accounts. Almost all of these “hints” are found in passages after the two SLM installments (4.4) through chap. 13 — a cause perhaps for disallowing the four rather unimportant references preceding that point (2.8A, 2.14A, 3.1D, 4.3C).(9) The thirty-six chronicles used are arranged in tabular form, chiefly to indicate the incidence of specific articles in these five source-books and to point out the validating citations in the notes. Roughly they are listed in the order of frequency of imputed use. The titles given are generally those of the compilations of the 1830s, with the dates of the described event and with alternate titles in parentheses. Although most of the texts, especially when taken from the “original” London edition, are almost uniform, a few have been changed in wording or markedly abridged, sometimes losing the passages that Poe employed (e.g., nos. 8 and 19 in ML) and being listed for the sake of completeness only. The lack of any reprint for no. 21 in the American compilations makes this one chronicle a dubious source for Poe’s text, since he was less likely to use the four-volume London or Philadelphia set than the shorter compilations. (See Table I on pp. 22-23.) [page 21:]

The rest of the fairly definite sources for passages or ideas in Pym are rather few and slight in their contribution, aside from Astoria and books by Stephens and Keith. Early commentaries on Poe noted his use of this work by Irving, being read for the January 1837 SLM review while he was “conceiving” Pym, but J. V. Ridgely was probably the first to note the derivation of Dirk Peters from Pierre Dorion. The explosion of the Jane Guy (22.11) unquestionably owes much to the fate of the Tonguin in Astoria, although in this as in other parts of the book, we can more correctly speak about multiple sources as contributing to Poe’s imaginative creation. Other suggestions from Astoria may have contributed to the minor character named Hunt, the encounter with the bear, and the description of the natives, of the canoe, and of the tumuli of Tsalal.(10) Michael Scott’s popular sea novel, Tom Cringle’s Log (1833) clearly furnished Poe with the powerful plague-ship episode, as John Robertson first noted, as well as with other details; Poe may have taken elements also from Scott’s second and more blood-curdling sea novel The Cruise of the Midge (1835).(11) Another sea novel known to Poe, Captain Frederick Marryat’s Peter Simple (1834), undoubtedly provided Peters with the ingenious plan for descending the cliff, although only one review — in the London Spectator of October 27, 1838 — compared Pym to Marryat’s works.(12) In addition, Joseph H. Ingraham’s sea-novel Lafitte (1836) may have lent a few small details (2.5C, 13.22A, 14.19A).

­ ­

[[TABLE 1]]
[[pp. 22-23]]

More definitely, Poe derived important ideas and textual materials from two books of travel in the Near East and from one Hebrew dictionary. In a curious way, Poe’s involvement with John L. Stephens’ Incidents of Travel in Egypt, Arabia Petraea and the Holy Land goes back to his own favorable review of the Reverend Francis L. Hawks’s Contributions to the Ecclesiastical History of the United States of America-Virginia in the SLM of March 1836.(13) Probably as a consequence of [page 24:] this, Hawks had something to do with Poe’s removal to New York City in February 1837, according to the information that Poe gave to Henry Hirst for the March 4, 1843, biographical sketch of Poe in the Philadelphia Saturday Museum:

About this period was commenced, “The New York Quarterly Review,” by Professors Anthon and Henry, with Dr. Hawks. Receiving a flattering invitation from its proprietors, Mr. P. was induced to abandon “The Messenger,” (in which he had no pecuniary interest) and remove to New York. Dr. Hawks says: — ‘I wish you to fall in with your broad-axe amidst this miserable literary trash which surrounds us. I believe you have the will, and I know well you have the ability.”(14)

Hawks also had an interest in promoting the publication of Stephens, a young lawyer, who had spent nearly two years in the areas mentioned in the title of his book. He had met Hawks in London during 1836 before returning to New York, and Hawks had urged him to write an account of his travels for the Harpers, probably because of Hawks’ influential position as the prolific writer of the “Uncle Philip” books in the Harpers’ juvenile series. The firm encouraged a rapid preparation of the Incidents of Travel for 1837 publication.(15) It may be surmised that soon after Poe’s arrival, Hawks assigned to him the review of this important forthcoming work in the new journal. In the usual habit of publishers, the Harpers distributed lively chapters of the book, in manuscript copies, to the weeklies, which reprinted them as early as April 1, 1837.(16) These long excerpts made available to the highly interested Poe sections of both the first and second volumes of Stephens’ book before and while [page 25:] they were being set up in type for a late May publication. We know that he prepared a first review for the second or summer issue of the New York Review, which was to be canceled. There are clear traces in Pym of the material in these excerpts, which shaped the story line and the setting from the point at which Pym and Peters find themselves isolated on the barren plateau of Tsalal to the end of the book (see 19.1A, 19.613, 20,12A, 21.7A, 23.1 B, 23 bis. 5A).

Moreover, Stephens had extensively used a popular British work by the Reverend Alexander Keith entitled Evidence of the Truth of the Christian Religion derived from the literal fulfillment of Prophecy; particularly as illustrated by the history of the Jews, and by the discoveries of recent travellers. Doubtless Poe had studied the 1832 reprint of Harper and Brothers in preparation for his early review. Traces of Keith’s book that appear to be distinct from the source passages in Stephens’ book occur in at least four paragraphs of Pym (see 22.12A, 23.113, 23.8A, 23 bis. 5A). Finally, Poe’s interest in the decline and fall of nations of the Holy Land, specifically Babylon and Idumea or Biblical Edom, led him into linguistic inquiries as evidenced by the well-known letter of June 1, 1837, from Charles Anthon, the famous classical scholar and collaborating editor of the New York Review. This answer to questions posed by Poe in his letter of May 27 (now lost) gave him learned explanations of comminatory texts from the Bible which he used in his review of Stephens’ book and repeatedly during his later career.(17) The material itself accords with the Biblical implications in the final “Note” and in the inserted chapter, the first of the two numbered “23” when Pym was finally published in June 1838, a year late. Poe’s attention had been drawn by some biblicist, probably in March or April 1837, to the first English translation (by Edward Robinson) of A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament . . . of William Gesenius (Boston, 1836). From this text Poe took the very form of the engraved misnamed word, “Tsalal,” so prominent in both these sections of Pym, which were probably [page 26:] added to the already completed work. The specific stimulus for Poe’s display of whimsical erudition was, most likely, a long article reviewing a French book on comparative linguistics, undoubtedly by Charles Anthon, published in the March 1837 issue of the New York Review. It gave Poe the following elements in his account of Pym’s adventures on the island of the savages near the Pole: the dispersion of races and of languages (Note.5A), the uniform blackness of all the living creatures (19.3C), the word “Tsalal” used for the name of the island (Note.6A), and the word “mattee” (20.11C).(18)

Another group of source materials may be conjecturally ascribed solely from the internal evidence and the likelihood of Poe’s being acquainted with them. He had reviewed Mary Griffith’s Camperdown, which may have lent details to Tiger’s madness and also to the avalanche (3.8A, 21.7B). Another recent best seller, Joseph C. Hart’s Miriam Coffin, or The Whale-Fisherman (New York, 1834), probably suggested the name Grampus, shipboard details, the collision of the Ariel, and the javelins of the natives (1.6A, 2.2A, 2AC, 18.3A). Coleridge’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” one of Poe’s favorite works, comes to every reader’s mind for the plague ship, the “rotting deep,” and “phosphorescence” (10.2A, 10.40 and D, 13.11A and C). Poe may have used Symzonia (1820), the novel by “Captain Adam Seaborn,” generally ascribed to the early mentor and associate of Jeremiah Reynolds, in publicizing John Cleves Symmes’s theory of habitable “concentric spheres” within the earth, approachable through the hollow Poles (hence the vortex in “MS. Found in a Bottle” and inferentially but not definitely in Pym).(19) [page 27:]

Surely more influential than any of these works of fiction was the prototype of verisimilar sea-ad-venture stories, The Life and Strange Surprizing Adventures of Robinson Crusoe. In a review of January 1836 Poe had paid testimony to the lasting charm of the novel that Defoe avowedly contrived from a journal, as Pym was going to be. Nine of the early reviews of Poe’s novel commented on the similarities of narrative method and details of situations. More recently, critics have seen in Poe’s devices of verisimilitude a deliberate adaptation of Defoe’s techniques.(20) Source-hunters, of course, have found valid evidences of other works. William Leggett’s powerful tale “The Encounter,” appearing first in the February 1834 Knickerbocker, has been suggested for the initial collision of the Ariel (1.7B).(21) Nathaniel Ames’s A Mariner’s Sketches, I feel certain, gave Pym and Peters a method of escape from the crevasse (21.5A). Arthur Mervyn by C. B. Brown may have entered into the opening of the deathship episode (10.4A), and Edgar Huntly into the “premature burial” in the fissure (21.2).(22) Cooper in his sea-novel The Pilot may have provided the Ariel and “Long Tom” (1.1G, 2AC) and possibly a slight narrative element in The Monikins, his satirical novel about an Antarctic island of civilized monkeys (1835; 17.8A). A vague trace of Notre Dame de Paris lurks in the grotesque appearance of Peters (4.4E)(23) and of Gulliver’s Travels in the speech of the natives (19.2A). More than one commentator has found in Jane Porter’s once popular hoax novel Narrative of Sir Edward Seaward (London, 1831) the seeds of the initial story line and descriptive details. It is true that Poe paid this unconvincing, artificial work extravagant praise, but his partiality is no reason for us to [page 28:] force parallels with Pym.(24) Similarly remote are the alleged hints from Dante (2.12E and 18.911), Shelley’s “Alastor” (2.1E), and Voltaire (24.9A). The novel may owe small elements to other books of travel popular at the time. Well known were the Harpers’ reprint (1834) of John Barrow’s A Description of Pitcairn’s Island and . . . Account of the Mutiny of the Ship Bounty (4.511, 5.6A and B, 9.6A, 18.3A) and James Riley’s Authentic Narrative (1817; reprinted 1820 and 1828) of his shipwreck and agonizing survival among desert Arabs (13.10A). I find unlikely Poe’s reading or pointedly remembering Cook’s Voyages, ideas from which had entered into numerous articles in Rees’s Cyclopaedia (1819), which Poe now used, as he had before for “Hans Pfaall” and his “Palaestine” article in the February 1836 SLM.(25) No levies were made upon Lewis and Clark, although the journal was mentioned for Pym’s reading (2.10C, 3.1E). Miscellaneous information, needed in Pym, may have come from articles on the Virginia Springs in the SLM (18.911), from a story about black-toothed natives in the Baltimore Saturday Visiter (24.10A), and from Jacob Bryant’s A New System, or, an Analysis of Antient Mythology (24.14D). The last reflects the orientation toward biblical myth at the end, remarked by all readers, in the details and in the language.(26) For ideas concerning the sea-wanderer facing hardships Homer’s Odyssey may have been fruitful to Poe’s imagination, as in his first “To Helen” (7.3A, 18.2A, 19.211, 23.1A), while J. V. Ridgely finds a cause for the change of “wine-dark” to “milky” sea in a statement in Malte-Brun’s System of Universal Geography (trans., Boston, 1834). We can also ascribe an assortment of trivial phrases and motifs to other English poets than Coleridge: Burns (20.911), Byron (1.4A), Shakespeare (1.1G, 1.5C, 2.12E, 2.18A, 3.10C, 12.7B), Spenser (4.4E), and Tennyson (13.1A), In general, aside from its ample use of Reynolds, Morrell, and the mariners’ chronicles, Pym merits praise as an independent and original work of fiction.

 


[[Footnotes]]

[The following footnotes appear at the bottom of page 18:]

1.  See Eugene Exman, The Brothers Harper (New York, 1965), pp. 29, 94-95. For the full account of Morrell’s high reputation in America and his gradual loss of credit among serious geographers and for the dependence of Pym upon his Voyages see my article in SAF, Autumn 1976, 4:157-72. The full title of Morrell’s book, in its form and details, is almost prelusive of that of Pym, q.v. in my study in SAF, Spring 1974, 2:37-56.

2.  See Aubrey Starke, in AL, May 1939, 11:152-59, and R. F. Almy, Colophon, Winter 1937, n.s. 2:227-45, and B. Pollin, Discoveries in Poe (Notre Dame, 1970), pp. 198-200. In rejecting Poe’s acquaintance with Reynolds, I did not adequately consider Poe’s penultimate sentence in his review of the Address, asking whether the critics of Reynolds had “seen or conversed with him half an hour,” implying that he had. Also, Poe’s growing desperation for a steady income, expressed in his letter of July 10, 1838, to J. K. Paulding, makes it probable that during 1837 and 1838 in New York, he would have sought out Reynolds, whom he considered a key man in the planned expedition (J. W. Ostrom, “Fourth Supplement to the Letters of Poe,” AL, January 1974, 45:517-18).

3.  See D. J. Tynan, PS, December 1971, 4:35-36 (and 145A and 14.6A). I concur that this review, preceding Poe’s editorship by a month, is not from his hand, for uncharacteristic are the style and Poe’s failure to refer to the book or any review by him (save for a slight reference in the December 1841 Graham’s Magazine “Autography” item on Reynolds).

[The following footnotes appear at the bottom of page 19:]

4.  See 1.1F, 2,1D, 2.5E, 15.7D, 16.2A, 16.3A, 16.9 and 10A, 18.7A, and Note.5A. Most of Poe’s adaptation was first shown by R. L. Rhea, in TSLL, 1930, 10:135-44. He ignored as a source Reynold’s Report of the Committee on Naval Affairs, reviewed by Poe in the August 1836 SLM (see 2.113), although G. Woodberry had earlier written of both reports as providing “suggestions”: Poe (1909), 1:191 and Works (1899; reprint of 1914 used), 5:434.

5.  For Gowans’ tribute to Poe, with whose family he lodged for eight unspecified and unverifiable months while Poe wrote Pym, see John Ingram, “Memoir,” in Works of Poe (London, 1899), I:xxxvi-xxxvii; for his prominence as a bookseller, see W. L. Andrews, The Old Booksellers of New York (New York, 1895).

6.  London, 1804; Philadelphia, 1806 and 1810. For the somewhat confused publishing history of this edition, for a chronological listing of such works published in England and America up to 1860, and for a good discussion of the wide appeal of the genre, see Keith Huntress, Narratives of Shipwrecks and Disasters, 1586-1860 (Ames, Iowa, 1974), Introduction, pp. ix-xxxii and the “Checklist.” He reprints eleven of the thirty-six used by Poe.

7.  D. M. McKeithan, TSLL, 1933, 13:116-37, for the London four-volume set, with no titles of individual chronicles specified; Keith Huntress, AL, March 1944, 16:19-25.

[The following footnotes appear at the bottom of page 20:]

8.  Keith Huntress (see n. 6 above) treats only of the compilation by R. Thomas in his “Checklist,” repeatedly spells the publisher “Gorton” as “Gaston,” fails to state that the plates copyrighted by Durrie and Peck in 1834 were rented out for many later reprints in other cities, omits the Boston, 1834, Gaylord edition, and lists the Mariner’s Library only for 1840. Thomas’ Remarkable Shipwrecks was reissued in 1836, 1837, 1839, 1847, 1849, and 1853, the last two under a different imprint but from the same plates. See also the extracts made by Cicely Fox Smith in Adventures and Perils (London, 1936). To the late Professor Mabbott I owe my use of the New Haven edition and to J. V. Ridgely, my search in the Mariner’s Library.

9.  Mr. McKeithan assumes that they reached Poe’s desk for SLM reviews. I have not fully accepted the findings of McKeithan or Huntress, sifting theirs and adding others.

[The following footnotes appear at the bottom of page 21:]

10.  See the general statements in George Woodberry, Poe (1909), 1:91; A. H. Quinn, American Fiction (New York, 1935), p. 90; Thomas Philbrick, James Fenimore Cooper, and the Development of American Sea Fiction (Cambridge, 1961), p. 173; and J. V. Ridgely, PS, June 1970, 3:5, q.v., also, for a “hint” from Bracebridge Hall (1.7B and 10.2A). For Astoria see 4.4C, 6.11A, 8.12B, 9.7A, 11.4B, 11.15A, 17.9A, 17.11 A, 18.5B, 19.6A, 20.8B, 22.6A, 22.11 A, 22.11 B, 22.12A, 23 bis.5A, 242A.

11.  See John W. Robertson, Bibliography of the Writings of . . . Poe (San Francisco, 1934), 2:173-74. For the first novel see 1.4C, 2.13D, 10.3-6A, and 21.7B; for the second, 2.13D, 7.12A, 8.8F, 21.7B, and 23 bis. 5A.

[The following footnote appears at the bottom of page 21, running to the bottom of page 22:]

12.  See 23 bis2 and 3, also Preface.1B and 10.7B. For the review see SAF, 1974, 2:53.

13.  See SLM, 2:282-86 for this laudatory review of the book by the rector of St. Thomas Church in New York. By November 1841 in the “Autography” series in Graham’s Magazine Poe finds the style of Hawks “fluent,” not “lofty,” and by 1846, [page 22:] in the “Literati” paper on Lewis G. Clark, his sermons are merely “smooth as oil.” For further evidence of the early friendship of the two see J. H. Whitty, ed., The Complete Poems of . . . Poe (Boston, 1911), p. xl, n. 2.

[The following footnote appears at the bottom of page 22:]

14.  See A. H. Quinn, Poe, pp. 370-74, for a discussion of this sketch, which was reprinted from the February 25 issue of the Museum. I am indebted to the library of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for a copy of this rare, unreprinted document.

15.  See Eugene Exman, The Brothers Harper, pp. 94-95, for the promotion of Incidents of Travel by James Harper, and pp. 33 and 384-85, for the nine titles produced by Hawks as “Uncle Philip” for the Juvenile Library and later for “The School District Library.”

16.  I have found prepublication excerpts in two weeklies and one monthly: New-Yorker: April 1, 3:19-20; April 8, 3:38; April 22, 3:72; May 6, 3:120; May 13, 3:125; May 27, 3:148-50; New-York Mirror, April 1, 14:325-26; April 29, 14:346-47; June 3, 14:392 (review); and The Knickerbocker Magazine, May 1837, 9:515-19. Possibly there were other journals with such excerpts, to be seen by Poe, which eluded my search.

[The following footnote appears at the bottom of page 15:]

17.  George Woodberry, in Edgar Allan Poe (Boston, 1885), p. 106, was the first to suggest the book by Stephens as a source for the hieroglyphics and the mysterious ruins on Tsalal, although he fails to repeat this fruitful suggestion in his own notes to Pym in his 1895 edition of Poe’s works. For Sidney Kaplan’s ascription to Stephens see The Narrative of . . . Pym (New York, 1960), Introduction, p. xx. J. V. Ridgely, to Papers on Poe (Springfield, Ohio, 1972), pp. 104-12, best develops the theme. For details of Poe’s use of Incidents of Travel see l8.1A, 19.6B, 23.111, 23,10A, 23 bis.5A, and Note.5A. For the letter from Charles Anthon to Poe, see Harrison, Works of Poe, 17:42-43. Poe repeatedly used this material, as in the October 1837 review of Incidents of Travel, the March 1840 review of Greenwood’s Sacred Philosophy, and “Marginalia,” no. 11,5.

[The following footnotes appear at the bottom of page 26:]

18.  Anthon’s letter of June 1 mentions the Gesenius dictionary but only in Leo’s translation, not that of Robinson. Perhaps Francis Hawks himself showed Poe a copy of the 1836 Boston publication, in response to Poe’s inquiry about the word “tsalal,” which occurs in Anthon’s March 1837 review (see Note.6A below). I am indebted to Joseph V. Ridgely for bringing to my attention, for its varied significance in Pym, this article (no. V in 1:109-137) on the Baron de Merian’s (i.e., Andreas Adolf von Merian) Principes de 1‘étude comparative des langues . . . suivis d‘Observations sur les racines des langues Sémitiques par M. [J.] Klaproth (Paris, 1828), replete with Anthon’s learned speculations on the basic tongue of mankind and with footnotes and tables of comparative forms. For its specific contributions to Poe’s text see the notes parenthetically indicated above. Poe’s use of the Gesenius Lexicon was first discussed by Sidney Kaplan, Introduction to Pym, but without any reference to the form of the letters. Most of his linguistic inferences are valid, q.v. in 9.1A, 20.11C, 23.10A, 24.5A, Note.6A, 7A, and 7B.

19.  Although Symmes may not be the author, I doubt Nathaniel Ames’s authorship argued by H. J. Lang and Benjamin Lease, New England Quarterly, June 1975, 48:24152. For a convincing demonstration of Poe’s use of Symzonia see J. O. Bailey, PMLA, September 1942, 57:513-35, and Introduction to Symzonia (Gainesville, Florida, 1965). [page 27:] Thomas Philbrick, Cooper, pp, 311-12, n. 9, and I. Haverstick and J. V. Ridgely, TSLL, p. 76, n. 26, find no connection, but see my notes: 14.3B, 14.18B, 18.1A, 19.2A, 23.13A, 24.6A, and 24.1411; also Poems, 1:131-32.

20.  For the reviews, see SAF, 2:37-56, and for details of Poe’s admiration of Defoe’s mastery of verisimilitude and use of the theme of man “in a state of perfect isolation,” see Topic:30, Fall 1976, pp. 3-22. For earlier treatments of Defoe in Pym see Arthur Ransome, Edgar Allan Poe (London, 1910), pp. 91-93; F. L. Pattee, Development of the American Short Story (New York, 1923), pp. 123-25; T. Philbrick, Cooper, p. 172; and Desmond Maxwell, American Fiction (New York, 1963), pp. 72-76. For discussion, see 1.1B, 1.7G, 2.111, 2.1E, 6AB, 92A, 20.11C, 23.2A, 23 bis.7A, 24.2A.

21.  See John Seelye, Pym (Philadelphia, 1967), p. 7.

22.  Donald A. Ring, Charles Brockden Brown (New York, 1966), p. 97.

23.  I find this assumption confirmed by J. M. Santraud, La Mer et le roman américain (Paris, 1972), p. 211. For Poe and Victor Hugo see chapters 1 and 2 of Discoveries in Poe.

[The following footnotes appear at the bottom of page 28:]

24.  See Randel Helms, AL, 1970, 4:572-75, who is answered by J. V. Ridgely in ATQ, Fall 1974, 24:9, n. 6. For instances of Poe’s admiration see J. Ostrom, Letters, 2:433, and an uncollected review of Ned Myers by Cooper of 1844, in Discoveries in Poe, pp. 136-37.

25.  See J. O. Bailey, AL, March 1941, 13:44-53, and PMLA, 57:521, n. 37. See also D. M. McKeithan, TSLL, 1933, notes 92 and 94-95, concerning Rhea’s erroneous attribution of passages to Cook rather than to Morrell and the Cyclopaedia, q.v. in 14.1911 and C, 17.1211, 20.1A, and 24.4A.

26.  See 18.9B, 21.2A, 22.12A, 24.14D, Note.5A and Note.9A. Also see 1.4D, 2.9A, 2.12F, and 9.2A.

 


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Notes:

None.


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[S:0 - BRPIMV, 1981/1994] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions - The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe (B. R. Pollin) (Pym)