Edgar Allan Poe — “A Dream within a Dream”


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Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:

  • “A Dream within a Dream” — reading copy

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Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings (full text):

  • Text-01 — “Imitation” — 1827, no original manuscript or fragments are known to exist (but this version is presumably recorded in Text 02)
  • Text-02 — “Imitation” — 1827 — TAOP — (Mabbott text A)  (This is Mabbott’s copy-text for “Imitation”)
  • Text-03 — “To — —” — 1827-1828 — (The changes are so great in the next text, that one must presume some kind of working draft, from which the fair copy of Text-03 was created. Only five lines of the original poem, with only four as a recognizable block, are represented in the new version. This draft copy has not surivived, but the final result of this version is presumably recorded in Text 04)
  • Text-04 — “To — —” — about 1828 — “Wilmer” manuscript (this page now lost, but text recorded by Stedman and Woodberry about 1894, in their notes to the poems, 10:228) — (Mabbott text A1) (Having had the poems set in type for the book, Poe appears to have sent the manuscripts for “Al Aaraaf,” “Tamerlane,” “To” (“Should my early life seem”) and “Fairyland” to John Neal, who printed exerpts. Neal may have returned the manuscripts as portions of “To” and the earlier version of “Tamerlane” were retained by L. A. Wilmer. The manuscript has never been described, but based on the other suviving pages of the Wilmer collection, it was written on off-white sheets of paper, using dark brown ink and a careful script. The length of the poem indicates that it would have been written on the front and back of one separate leaf, with odd pages numbered in the upper right corner and even ones in the upper left corner. At this point, Poe had not yet adopted the style of printing in imitation of type, nor the practice of connecting pages by using wax to form a roll.)
  • Text-05 — “To — —” — 1829 — ATMP — (Mabbott text C1)  (This is Mabbott’s copy-text for “To — —”) (Two minor verbal differences between the printed text and the Wilmer manuscript suggest that they were made in proof during the typestetting process.)
  • Text-06 — “[[To — —]]” — about 1830-1831 — (speculated portions of the text, in preparation for the publication of POEMS, where it was incorporated as a new final stanza for “Tamerlane,” so that this revision no longer has its own title. As a short section of a poem, it is possible that Poe wrote out a new manuscript for this section, or that he cut the lines out of pages from ATMP. Preparations for various poems that appeared in the new edition probably resulted in Poe using up his own copy of ATMP. This draft has not survived, but is presumably recorded in Text-07. Additional minor changes may have been made in proof. during the production of POEMS.)
  • Text-07 — “[To — —]” — 1831 — POEMS (incorporated into “Tamerlane” as section XXIV) — (Mabbott text D1)
  • Text-08 — “To ——” — late 1848 or early 1849 — (speculated draft of the new version of the poem, from which Poe extracted the portion he sent to Annie Richmond, and ultimately to the editor of the Flag of Our Union for publication. This manuscript has not survived, but is presumably reflected in Text-12.)
  • Text-09 — “For Annie” — Early 1849 — “Annie” manuscript — (Mabbott text A2)
  • Text-10 — “A Dream within a Dream” — early 1849 — (speculated fair copy of the new version of the poem, with the revised title, sent to the editor of the Flag of Our Union for pubication. This manuscript has not survived, but is presumably reflected in Text-11.)
  • Text-11 — “A Dream within a Dream” — March 31, 1849 — Flag of Our Union — (Mabbott text B2)
  • Text-12 — “To —” — about August 1849 — Richmond Examiner proof sheets — (Mabbott text C2) (Although the printing in the Flag of Our Union was early enough in the yeat that Poe should have been able to receive a copy, but the reversion back to the earlier title suggests that Poe had with him in Richmond his draft manuscript, from which the retitled fair copy sent to the editors of the Flag of Our Union was made.

 

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings (extracts):

  • To — —” — December 1829 — Yankee (excerpts only) — (Mabbott text B1)

 

Reprints:

  • “To —” — 1830 — Baltimore Minerva and Emerald  (printed as part of a review of ATMP)
  • A Dream within a Dream” — 1850 — WORKS — Griswold reprints Text 07 — (Mabbott text D2)  (This is Mabbott’s copy-text for “A Dream Within a Dream”)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — March 14, 1858 — Shippensburg News (Shippensburg, PA), vol. XIII, no. 38, p. 1, col. 5 (acknowledged as by “Edgar Allan Poe.”)
  • “To —— ——” — May 21, 1864 — as part of “Literariana” in Roundtable (New York, NY), p. 361 (apparently reprinted from ATMP)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — October 26, 1864 — Vicksburg Herald (Vicksburgh, MS), vol. 1, no. 101, p. 1, col. 4 (acknowledged as by “Edgar Allen [[Allan]] Poe.” It follows a short poem by H. W. Longfellow called “Resignation.”)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — March 19, 1867 — Spirit of Democracy (Woodsfield, OH), vol. XXIV, no. 3, p. 1, col. 2 (acknowledged as by “Edgar Allen [[Allan]] Poe.”
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — April 5, 1867 — Emporia News (Emporia, KS), vol. 10, no. 14, p. 1, col. 4 (with the brief introductory note “The English language furnishes few instances where so much pathos is intensified in so few words as in the following poem by Edgar Poe.”
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — April 26, 1867 — Wilimington Journal (Wilimington, NC), vol. 23, no. 11, p. 1, col. 2 (acknowledged as “By Edgar Allen [[Allan]] Poe)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — November 2, 1867 — Montana Post (Virginia City, Montana), vol. 4, no. 11, p. 7, col. 1 (acknowledged as by “Edgar A. Poe)
  • “Is It But a Dream?” — January 16, 1868 — Petaluma Weekly Argus (Petaluma, CA), vol. XIII, no. 49, p. 1, col. 2 (acknowledged as by “Poe”)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — November 6, 1873 — North Carolina Gazette (Fayetteville, NC), vol. ?, p. 4, col. 1 (acknowledged as by “Edgar A. Poe.”)
  • A Dream within a Dream” — 1875 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol 3: Poems  and Essays, ed. J. H. Ingram, Edinburgh, Adam and Charles Black (3:27-28)
  • “Imitation” — June 1876 — John H. Ingram, “The Unknown Poetry of Edgar Poe,” Belgravia: A London Illustrated Magazine (London, UK) (29:511-512) (reprinted from the recently discovered copy of TAOP from the British Museum, and thus the first reprint of this early version of the poem since 1827) (Ingram’s text makes what appear to be editorial adjustments, such as rendering Poe’s somewhat affected “unfathom’d” as “unfathomed” and modifying the use of commas, but does not sustain R. H. Shepherd’s charge that Ingram’s printed text is “shown to be valueless on account of its inaccuracies.”)
  • “Imitation” — June 8, 1876 — John H. Ingram, “Poe’s Suppressed Poetry,” New York Graphic, p. 805 (reprinted from Belgravia for June 1876)
  • “Imitation” — June 21, 1876 — John H. Ingram, “Unknown Poetry of Poe,” Home Journal (New York, NY) (reprinted from Belgravia for June 1876)
  • “Imitation” — 1884 — Poems and Essays of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. John H. Ingram, Leipzig: Bernard Tauchnitz (p. 156) (according to BAL, 7:136, issued as early as January 1884)
  • “Imitation” — 1884 — Tamerlane and Other Poems, ed. Richard Herne Shepherd, London: George Redway (p. 49)  (Having long been thought lost, a copy of the original Tamerlane and Other Poems of 1827 was discovered in the British Museum and printed in this “second edition.”)
  • “Imitation” — 1884 — The Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. John H. Ingram, London: John C. Nimmo (4:327)
  • “Imitation” — 1888 — The Complete Poetical Works and Essays on Poetry of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. John H. Ingram, London and New York: Frederick Warne & Co. (p. 105)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — February 5, 1896 — Lenoir Topic (Lenoir, NC), vol. XXI, no. 18, p. 1, top of col. 2 (acknowledged as by “Edgar Allen [[Allan]] Poe.”)
  • “[A Dream within a Dream]” — July 19, 1900 — Nashville American (Nashville, TN), vol. XXIV, whole no 8620, p. 4, top of col. 5 (acknowledged as by “E. A. Poe.”)
  • “[A Dream within a Dream]” — January 7, 1904 — Boston Post (Boston, MA), (no volume or issue number), p. 6, near the bottom of of col. 5 (the second stanza only, printed as part of a short story, “Planes of Consciousness” by Mrs. Claude Montgomery, unacknowledged as by Poe.) (the story, with the poem, was reprinted in the Buffalo Enquirer of Buffalo, NY, on January 21, 1904, p. 7)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — January 23, 1909 — El Paso Herald (El Paso, TX), vol. XXIV, whole no 8620, p. 20, col. 6 (acknowledged as by “Edgar Allen [[Allan]] Poe.”) (printed to accompany an article about the Poe Centennial)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — May 6, 1916 — Fort Wayne News (Fort Wayne, IN), vol. 42, p. 16, top of cols. 4-5
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — May 12, 1916 — Altoona Tribune (Altoona, PA), vol. 61, p. 8, col. 5
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — May 22, 1916 — The Pantagraph (Bloomington, IL), vol. LXX, no. 122, p. 11, col. 6
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — October 16, 1917 — Buffalo Commercial (Buffalo, NY), p. 4, col. 4
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — January 20, 1918 — New York Tribune (New York, NY), vol. LXXVII, whole no. 25,998, p. 38, col. 2 (printed as one of several poems appending an article on “The Birthday of Unhappy Edgar Allan Poe.”)

 

Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • A Dream within a Dream” — 1894-1895 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 10: Poems, eds. E. C. Stedman and G. E. Woodberry, Chicago: Stone and Kimball (10:130, and p. 227-229) (In the notes, Stedman and Woodberry reprint the full texts for “Imitation” and “To ——.”)
  • A Dream within a Dream” — 1902 — The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 7: Poems, ed. J. A. Harrison, New York: T. Y. Crowell (10:16, and 10:150-152) (In the notes, Harrison reprints the full texts for “Imitation” and “To ——,” but in both, Harrison seems to be copying from the notes in Stedman and Woodberry.)
  • To ——” — 1911 — The Complete Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. J. H. Whitty, Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Co. (p. 123, and pp. 273-275) (In the notes, Whitty reprints the full texts for “Imitation” and “To ——,” but, like, Harrison, Whitty seems to be copying both texts from the notes in Stedman and Woodberry.)
  • A Dream within a Dream” — 1917 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Killis Campbell, Boston: Ginn and Company (pp. 26-28, and pp. 161-163)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — 1965 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Floyd Stovall, Charlottesville: The University Press of Virginia (p. 18, and pp. 180-183)  (In his notes, Stovall reprints the full text of the 1827 “Imitation” and the 1829 “To — —”)
  • Imitation” — 1969 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 1: Poems, ed. T. O. Mabbott, Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (1:75-76) (Mabbott prints the three main versions of this poem as separate items, although he notes in the descriptive text that they are related to one another.)
  • To — —” (“Should my early life seem”) — 1969 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 1: Poems, ed. T. O. Mabbott, Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (1:129-132)
  • A Dream within a Dream” — 1969 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 1: Poems, ed. T. O. Mabbott, Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (1:450-452)
  • “Imitation” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, ed. Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America) (p. 34) (reprints Text-02)
  • “A Dream within a Dream” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, ed. Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America) (p. 97) (reprints Text-07)

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Comparative and Study Texts:

Instream Comparative and Study Texts:

  • To — —” — Comparative Text (TAOP and Wilmer-MS)
  • To — —” — Comparative Text (Wilmer-MS and ATMP)

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Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • 1980 - the movie “The Fog” (directed by John Carpenter) — The film begins with the text, on screen, of the last two lines of “A Dream within a Dream” (with Poe’s name, but without the specific poem being noted.)
  • “A rêve dans un rêve” — 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.
  • 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 - A Dream within a Dream