Edgar Allan Poe — “The Happiest Day”


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞



Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:

  • “The Happiest Day” — reading copy

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings:

  • Text-01 — “[[Untitled]]” — 1827, no original manuscript or fragments are known to exist (but this version is presumably recorded in Text-02)
  • Text-02 — “[[Untitled]]” — 1827 — TAOP — (Mabbott text A)  (This is Mabbott’s copy-text)
  • Text-03 — “[Original]” — September 15, 1827 — North American — (Mabbott text B) (In his introduction to the poem, T. O. Mabbott strongly suggests that for this version Poe’s brother, William Henry Leonard Poe, “may well have been the reviser” (see 1:180). His claim is based chiefly on the fact that this printing is signed with the initials W. H. P. and “the tame quality of the new lines.” It might also be noted that Mabbott’s opinion allows him to diverge from his usual practice of selecting the latest authorized text as his copy-text. In the 1926 book Poe’s Brother, the comment on this poem states “It is not improbable that the changes were made by Edgar’s direction, for he was always reworking his verses. But there is an unromantic chance that the poem was reduced in size to fill the desired space in the paper” (see p. 43). Whether this comment was written by Mabbott or his co-author Hervey Allen is uncertain, although it is likely that Mabbott at least agreed with it when it was printed and the phrasing sounds like Mabbott in other notes of this kind. In the 1926 book, p. 93, it is noted that this printing of the poem was discovered by Dr. Mabbott in 1924. The discovery was announced in “Edgar Allan Poe: A Find,” Notes and Queries (London), April 1926, vol. 150, p. 241, but without citing the date of 1924 and without reprinting the text of the poem.)

 

Reprints:

  • “[Untitled]” — June 1876 — John H. Ingram, “The Unknown Poetry of Edgar Poe,” Belgravia: A London Illustrated Magazine (London, UK) (29:513) (reprinted from the recently discovered copy of TAOP from the British Museum, and thus the first reprint of the poem since 1827) (Ingram’s text makes what appear to be editorial adjustments, such as rendering Poe’s somewhat affected “sear’d” as “seared,” but does not sustain R. H. Shepherd’s charge that Ingram’s printed text is “shown to be valueless on account of its inaccuracies.”)
  • “[Untitled]” — June 8, 1876 — John H. Ingram, “Poe’s Suppressed Poetry,” New York Graphic, p. 805 (reprinted from Belgravia for June 1876)
  • “[Untitled]” — June 21, 1876 — John H. Ingram, “Unknown Poetry of Poe,” Home Journal (New York, NY) (reprinted from Belgravia for June 1876)
  • “The Happiest Day” — 1882 — Poems of Edgar Allan Poe (ed. Henry Llewellyn Williams), New York: Hurst & Co., pp. 193-194 (The entry suggested to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie, in an e-mail dated December 1, 2018)
  • “The Happiest Day” — 1884 — Poems and Essays of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. John H. Ingram, Leipzig: Bernard Tauchnitz (pp. 157-158) (according to BAL, 7:136, issued as early as January 1884) (reprints the TAOP text of 1827, with a new title assigned by Ingram)
  • “[Untitled]” — 1884 — Tamerlane and Other Poems, ed. Richard Herne Shepherd, London: George Redway (pp. 53-54)  (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.” The new edition was apparently available prior to May 10, 1884, by which time it was apparently “already sold out in England,” according to Critic and Good Literature, 4:222.)
  • “The Happiest Day” — 1884 — The Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. John H. Ingram, London: John C. Nimmo (4:328-329) (reprints the TAOP text of 1827, with the title assigned by Ingram)
  • “The Happiest Day” — 1888 — The Complete Poetical Works and Essays on Poetry of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. John H. Ingram, London and New York: Frederick Warne & Co. (pp. 105-106) (reprints the TAOP text of 1827, with the title assigned by Ingram)
  • “The Happiest Day” — February 4, 1886 — Acton Free Press (Acton, Ontario, Canada), vol. XI, no. 31, p. 1, col. 7 (printing the title and only the last three stanzas, without mentioning Poe) (The entry provided to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie, in an e-mail dated December 1, 2018)
  • [Original]” — 1926 — Poe’s Brother: The Poems of William Henry Leonard Poe, ed. Hervey Allen and Thomas Ollive Mabbott, New York: George H. Doran Company (pp. 42-43, including a photographic reproduction from the North American and the full text as the poem as it appeared in TAOP.)

 

Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • The Happiest Day, the Happiest Hour” — 1894-1895 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 10: Poems, eds. E. C. Stedman and G. E. Woodberry, Chicago: Stone and Kimball (10:121, and p. 224)
  • The Happiest Day, the Happiest Hour” — 1902 — The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 7: Poems, ed. J. A. Harrison, New York: T. Y. Crowell (10:20, and 10:154-155)
  • The Happiest Day, the Happiest Hour” — 1911 — The Complete Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. J. H. Whitty, Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Co. (p. 127, and p. 276)
  • The Happiest Day, the Happiest Hour” — 1917 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Killis Campbell, Boston: Ginn and Company (p. 31, and pp. 166-167)
  • “The Happiest Day — The Happiest Hour” — 1965 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Floyd Stovall, Charlottesville: The University Press of Virginia (p. 22, and pp. 185-186)
  • The Happiest Day” — 1969 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 1: Poems, ed. T. O. Mabbott, Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (1:80-82)
  • “The Happiest Day” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, ed. Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America) (pp. 36-37) (reprints Text-02, with the title assigned by Woodberry and Stedman)

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Comparative and Study Texts:

Instream Comparative and Study Texts:

  • None

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • “Le plus beau jour, la plus belle heure” — dated 2009, but available in late 2008 — Poèmes d‘Edgar Allan Poe, Paris: Publibook (translation by Jean Hautepierre)

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


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.

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞

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