Edgar Allan Poe — “Letter to B——”


Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:

  • “Letter to B——” — reading copy


Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings:

  • Text-01 — “Letter To Mr. — ——” — 1831, no original manuscript or fragments are known to exist (but this version is presumably recorded in Text-02)
  • Text-02 — “Letter To Mr. — ——” — 1831 — POEMS
  • Text-03 — “Letter to B——” — July 1836 — Southern Literary Messenger (For Griswold’s 1856 reprint of this text, see the entry under reprints, below.)



  • Letter to B——” — 1856 — Works — Griswold merely reprints Text-03
  • “Letter to B——” — 1875 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. J. H. Ingram, Edinburgh, Adam and Charles Black (3:312-318)
  • Letter to B——” — 1903 — Life and Letters of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 2: Letters, ed. J. A. Harrison, New York: T. Y. Crowell (2:450-457) (Although not strictly a letter, in the sense of correspondence, Harrison includes this literary letter in the appendix.)
  • “Letter to B——” — 1909 — Selections from the Critical Writings of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Frederick C. Prescott, New York: Henry Holt and Company (pp. 1-10 and 323-325) (Prescott has apparently reprinted the text from Harrison, including the error of “The Indian Prince . . .”)
  • “Letter to Mr. [Elam Bliss]” — 1928 — Selected Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Thomas Ollive Mabbott, New York: Macmillan Company (The Modern Readers’ Series) (pp. 111-118)


Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • “Letter to B——” — 1894-1895 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 10: Poems, eds. E. C. Stedman and G. E. Woodberry, Chicago: Stone and Kimball (10:144-153) (included in the notes to the poems)
  • Letter to B——” — 1902 — The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 7: Poems, ed. J. A. Harrison, New York: T. Y. Crowell (7:xxxv-xliii) (Harrison’s text has a very unfortunate typographical error near the end, where “No Indian Prince . . .” is rendered as “The Indian Prince . . .” so that the meaning of the quotation is inverted and Poe’s purpose in giving it entirely undermined.)
  • “[Letter to B——]” — 1911 — The Complete Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. J. H. Whitty, Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Co. (pp. 186-192) (Whitty prints the 1831 text in his endnotes)
  • “Letter to B——” — 1917 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. K. Campbell, New York: Ginn and Co. (pp. 311-318)
  • “Letter to B——” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Essays and Reviews, ed. G. R. Thompson, New York: Library of America (pp. 5-12)
  • “Letter to Mr. — —” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America), pp. 10-17 (the version from Poems­, 1831)
  • “Letter to B——” — 2009 — Edgar Allan Poe: Critical Theory, Stuart and Susan F. Levine, eds., Chicago: University of Illinois Press (pp. 1-19)


Comparative and Study Texts:

Instream Comparative and Study Texts:

  • None


Plain Text Files for Juxta:

  • None


Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • “Lettre à B——” — June 15, 1897 — La Revue Blanche (Paris) (French translation by Philippe E. Dally, from the Ingram reprint)
  • “Letter to Mr. B” — 2007 — Audio book (unabridged), read by Chris Aruffo (part of a 5-CD set)



  • 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.
  • Levine, Stuart and Susan F., eds., Edgar Allan Poe: Critical Theory, Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2009
  • 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.
  • O‘Neill, James, “A Closer Source for the Goths in Poe’s ‘Letter to B——’,” Poe Studies, 1979, 12:19-20


[S:0 - JAS] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Essays - Letter to B----