Edgar Allan Poe — “Ulalume”


Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:


Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings (full text):

  • Text-01 — “[Ballad of Ulalume]” — about October 1847, no original manuscript or fragments are known to exist. In an obituary for John Collins McCabe, it is noted that “He was stimulated to literary activity by Edgar A. Poe, who was his intimate friend and wrote his far famed Ulalume, originally in his album” (see the Middleton Transcript of Middleton, DE, March 13, 1875, vol. VIII, no. 11, p. 2, col. 4, apparently reprinted from the Franklin Repository of Chambersburg, PA). While it is true that Poe had a close connection to McCabe, there is reason to be suspcious of this claim about an early version of “Ulalume.” It is known that Poe did indeed write a manuscript draft of “Irene,” an early from of “The Sleeper” in McCabe's album, and that manuscript has perhaps been confused with the more famous poem noted in the obituary.
  • Text-02 — “[Ballad of Ulalume]” — about October 1847 — “Bronson” manuscript (now lost and text not recorded) (see The Poe Log, pp. 705 and 707) (In an article printed in 1860, Rev. C. P. Bronson's daughter, Mary Elizabeth LeDuc, describes the manuscript as having been a roll, which “consisted of leaves of paper wafered neatly together,” a form recognized from a number of other surviving Poe manuscripts. She also mentions that “the writing was beautifully distinct and regular, almost like engraving.” It was, therefore, presumably a fair copy and not a working or composition draft.)
  • Text-03 — “To — — —. Ulalume: A Ballad” — before December 1847
    • Text-03a — “To — — —. Ulalume: A Ballad” — before December 1847 — (manuscript prepared for the American Review. Cullen B. Colton states that the manuscript was among those “either lost or stolen.” No trace of a manuscript is known, but it was common practice for such material to be destroyed during or after typesetting. Poe himself saw no particular importance in his manuscript once that version was set in type. The future value of these manuscripts was, of course, not recognized at the time.)
    • Text-03b — “To — — —. Ulalume: A Ballad” — December 1847 — American Review — (Mabbott text A) (When Poe visited Mrs. Whitman in Providence in 1848, he signed his name to the bound copy of this periodical at the Athenaeum, but appears not to have made any changes to the text.)
  • Text-04 — “Ulalume: A Ballad” — about December 8, 1847
    • Text-04a — “Ulalume: A Ballad” — about December 8, 1847 — (Poe sent N. P. Willis a copy of the American Review on December 8, 1847, with a letter requesting “a great favor if you would copy it in the H. J., with a word of inquiry as to who wrote it.” This copy does not appear to have had any changes marked by Poe, and technical differences in the text are presumably a matter of house style for the Home Journal or errors by the typesetter. It is possible that Poe marked out the superflous title of “To — — —,” or dropping it was the choice of the editor of the Home Journal. Willis did precisely as he was requested, in Text-04a.)
    • Text-04b — “Ulalume: A Ballad” — January 1, 1848 — Home Journal — (Mabbott text B) (In another letter to Willis, dated January 22, 1848, Poe says that “I am about to make an effort at re-establishing myself in the literary world,” by which it may be implied that the reason for asking Willis to reprint the poem, with a slight air of mystery, was part of his plan for publicizing his renewed effort to establish his own magazine.)
  • Text-05 — “Ulalume: — A Ballad” — about January - November 1848
    • Text-05a — “Ulalume: — A Ballad” — about January - November 1848 (speculated marked copy of the American Review or the Home Journal, prepared for The Poets and Poetry of America, and sent or delivered by hand to R. W. Griswold, with minor changes. Although there is no clear external evidence that Poe sent Griswold this poem, there are earlier and later letters from Poe to Griswold that show him supplying new poems with the hope of having them included in Griswold's anthology. Griswold's text for this poem has several strong similarities to that printed in the Providence Journal, but not all changes there, suggesting an earlier form that Poe also used as the basis for Text-07. The argument for the American Review is that the accent over both instances of the accent in “crispéd” returned, although with the opposite slant, changing the grave an accute. If Poe used the Home Journal, he must also have marked those words to mark the accent again, omitted by Willis simply as a matter of house style that preferred the simpler form. Most importantly, Griwold's text, Text-05a, includes the final stanza, with a minor change, the final stanza being omitted in Text-06b. With a new edition having just been printed in 1847, Griswold would not revise the text until the 1850 edition, issued late in 1849. An unrevised ninth edition would be printed in 1848 from the steroplates of the 1847 text. This marked copy has not survived, but is presumably recorded in Text-05a.)
    • Text-05b — “Ulalume — A Ballad” — Late 1849 — Poets and Poetry of America (10th edition, dated 1850) — (Mabbott text F) (Although printed in late 1849, the text was probably set in type long before 1849. Thus, it reflects an earlier version, and is listed accordingly.)
  • Text-06 — “Ulalume: — A Ballad” — about November 7, 1848
    • Text-06a — “Ulalume: — A Ballad” — about November 7, 1848 (speculated marked copy of the Home Journal, prepared for the Providence Daily Journal. During his visit Before November 24, 1848, Poe discussed the poem with Mrs. S. H. Whitman, and left a copy of this issue of the Home Journal, apparently requesting that she arrange to have it printed in Providence, see The Poe Log, p. 770. Writing to J. H. Ingram on March 30, 1874, Mrs. Whitman stated that Poe omitted the final stanza at her suggestion. It is not clear whether smaller changes were made by Poe or Mrs. Whitman.)
    • Text-06b — “Ulalume: — A Ballad” — November 22, 1848 — Providence Journal — (Mabbott text C) (This version omits the final stanza, and changes not reflected in other texts may reflect other suggestions by Mrs. Whitman.) (Poe sent a copy of this issue of the Providence Journal to E. A. Duyckinck on February 15, 1849, with a letter requesting that it be reprinted in the Literary World, see Text-07, but in that reprint, the final stanza is restored, suggesting that Poe sent the clipping only for the introductory material, and had already provided Duyckinck with a full copy of the text for the poem.)
    • Text-06c — “Ulalume” — 1850 — WORKS — (Mabbott text G) (Although printed early in 1850, the text presumably reflects an earlier version, and is listed accordingly. In this text, Griswold omits the final stanza. J. H. Whitty is mistaken when he suggests that Griswold later changed his mind and restored the stanza. Although Whitty cites the 1855 edition of The Poets and Poetry of America as evidence, Griswold had already printed this poem, with the final stanza, in the edition of 1850, issued late in 1849. Something prompted Griswold to make this dramatic change, and one might speculate that Mrs. Clemm, in sending to Griswold the materials Poe had accumulated, provided a copy of the Home Journal marked with changes, partially matching what he had provided for the Providence Journal, although not including all of the changes made there. In this version, Poe must have marked out the final stanza, as it was omitted in the Providence Journal. Griswold was understanably unaware of the precise sequence of the revisions, and the omission of the final stanza may have seemed to him an improvement with authorial approval and thus adopted that text even though Poe himself appears to have restored it.)
  • Text-07 — “Ulalume. A Ballad” — before February 16, 1849
    • Text-07a — “Ulalume. A Ballad” — before February 16, 1849 — (speculated copy of Home Journal with minor changes marked by Poe for the Literary World. Although Poe sent Duyckinck a clipping from the Providence Journal on February 16, 1849, requesting that it be printed “as it stands,” Poe had previously spoken with Duyckinck in person, presumably the day before, and appears to have left another copy of the poem as it had appeared in the Home Journal. This copy bore the same change in the final stanza that he had sent to Griswold. The idea that Poe provided the clipping from the Providence Journal only for the sake of the introductory material seems to be what is suggested in The Poe Log, p. 796.)
    • Text-07b — “Ulalume. A Ballad” — March 3, 1849 — Literary World — (Mabbott text D)
  • Text-08 — about June 1849 — If we accept the Examiner text, and certainly in the light of the existence of the given to Miss Ingram, Poe appears to have made a full copy of the poem, for his own purposes, presumably with the intention of having a copy with him on his lecture tour of the South.
    • Text-08a — “Ulalume — A Ballad” — September 10, 1849 — “Ingram” manuscript — (Mabbott text K)  (This is Mabbott's copy-text) (Poe had recited the poem, as well as several others, to a small informal group at the Hygeia Hotel in Old Point Comfort, Norfolk, VA the night before, for which see The Poe Log, pp. 832-833. He may have done so from memory, but instead of making a copy of the poem for Miss Ingram, he appears to have given her a manuscript that he already had in his possession, probably the manuscript he read from the night before, and the one used previously to create the Richmond Examiner proofsheets. It resembles the manuscripts he made in anticiation of publication, in the form of a roll and with a byline rather than a signature. If this supposition is true, Poe would not have needed to take the time to write out the full manuscript over night, although the gesture is still of special interest and the manuscript would still, essentially, represent the final authorized text without editorial interference.)
    • Text-08b — “Ulalume — A Ballad” — about August 1849 — Richmond Examiner proofsheets — (Mabbott text J) (J. H. Whitty is the sole authority for this text.)


Manuscripts and Authorized Printings (excerpts):

  • [Ulalume]” — about March 1848 — “Stedman” manuscript (in a notice about H. B. Hirst)
  • [Ulalume]” — about June 1849 — lines 30-38 only, “Griswold” manuscript (in a notice about H. B. Hirst)  (Mabbott text E)
  • Ulalume” — 1850 — lines 30-38 only in article about H. B. Hirst, WORKS  (Mabbott text H)



  • “Ulalume” — January 20, 1848 — Vicksburg Daily Whig (Vicksburg, MS), p. 2, col. 5  (reprinted from the Home Journal, with Willis's introduction, the inquiry as to “Who is the author,” and without Poe's name as author) (This entry was provided to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie in an email dated July 30, 2019)
  • Ulalume” — January 22, 1848 — Saturday Courier (Philadelphia, PA)  (reprinted from the Home Journal, with an extended introductory note of disapproval, probably by Henry Beck Hirst.)
  • “Ulalume” — March 11, 1848 — Columbia Spy and Literary Register (Columbia, PA), new series vol 1, no. 37, front page, col. 1  (reprinted from the Home Journal, with Willis's introduction, the inquiry as to “Who is the author,” and without Poe's name as author) (This entry was provided to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie in an email dated July 30, 2019)
  • Ulalume” — September 8, 1849 — Portland Transcript  (Portland, ME)
  • “Ulalume” — October 17, 1849 — Oquawka Spectator  (Oquawka, IL)
  • “Ulalume” — October 17, 1849 — Louisville Daily Journal, Louisville, KY  (only a few stanzas)
  • “Ulalume. A Ballad” — November 28, 1849 — Pennsylvania Telegraph (Harrisburg, PA), vol. 9 no. 22, front page, col. 4 (This entry was provided to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie in an email dated August, 18, 2018)
  • “Ulalume” — 1852 — Tales of Mystery and Imagination and Humour; and Poems, London: Henry Vizetelly (An undated edition appears about the same time, published by Charles H. Clark and Samuel Orchart Beeton, and their name appears as publisher for the second series), first series pp. 242-246. (with no woodcut illustration) (this poem was omitted in some later printings)
  • “Ulalume” — August 23, 1855 — Independent Republican (Montrose, PA), vol. I no. 88, front page, col. 1
  • Ulalume” — 1875 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol 3: Poems and Essays, ed. J. H. Ingram, Edinburgh, Adam and Charles Black (3:10-12)
  • “Ulalume” — May 1900 — Chatauquan (vol. 31, p. 195) (this item is noted by George Monteiro, “Fugitive Reprints,” E. A. Poe Review, Fall 2010, p. 162.)
  • “Ulalume” — October 14, 1906 — The State (Columbia, SC) (p. 23) (this item is noted by George Monteiro, “Fugitive Reprints,” E. A. Poe Review, Fall 2010, p. 162.)


Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • Ulalume” — 1894-1895 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 10: Poems, ed. E. C. Stedman and G. E. Woodberry (Chicago: Stone and Kimball), 10:43-46 and 10:186-187
  • Ulalume” — 1902 — The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 7: Poems, ed. J. A. Harrison (New York: T. Y. Crowell), 10:102-105 and 10:213-214
  • Ulalume” — 1911 — The Complete Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. J. H. Whitty (Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Co.), pp. 82-85 and pp. 244-247 (Whitty uses the Richmond Examiner text, for which he is the sole authority.)
  • Ulalume” — 1917 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Killis Campbell (Boston: Ginn and Company), pp. 117-120 and pp. 265-275
  • “Ulalume — A Ballad” — 1965 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Floyd Stovall (Charlottesville: The University Press of Virginia), pp. 103-106 and pp. 271-274
  • Ulalume” — 1969 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 1: Poems, ed. T. O. Mabbott (Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press), 1:409-423
  • “Ulalume” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, ed. Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America), pp. 89-91 (reprints the text from Stovall, 1965)
  • “Ulalume — A Ballad” — 2004 — The Selected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. G. R. Thompson (New York: W. W. Norton & Co.), pp. 61-65
  • “Ulalume: A Ballad” — 2015 — The Annotated Poe, ed. Kevin J. Hayes (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press), pp. 385-390


Comparative and Study Texts:

Instream Comparative and Study Texts:

  • Ulalume. A Ballad” — Comparative Text (American Review, Ingram Manuscript, and Richmond Examiner Proofsheets)
  • Ulalume. A Ballad” — Comparative Text (American Review and Home Journal)
  • Ulalume. A Ballad” — Comparative Text (American Review, Home Journal and Poets and Poetry of America)
  • Ulalume: — A Ballad” — Comparative Text (Home Journal and Providence Journal)
  • Ulalume” — Comparative Text (Poets and Poetry of America and WORKS)


Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • “[Ulalume]” — 1857 — “Edgar Allan Poe,” Magazin für die Literatur des Auslandes (131:522-524)  (German translation by Luise von Ploennis.)
  • “Ulalume” — 1862 — Contes inedts d‘Edgar Poe, Paris: J. Hetzel, pp. 283-287 (French translation by William L. Hughes)
  • “Ulalûm” — October 1949 — De Tsjerne, vol. 4, no. 10, p. 318 (Dokkum, Netherlands, published by J. Kamminga) (Frisian translation by Klaes Dykstra)  (This title provided by René van Slooten)
  • “Ulalume” — dated 2009, but available in late 2008 — Poèmes d‘Edgar Allan Poe, Paris: Publibook (translation by Jean Hautepierre)
  • “Mountains of Madness” by H. P. Lovecraft — February-April 1936 (published in 1936, but written in about January 1931) — (Lovecraft quotes from part of Poe's poem in chapter I.)



  • Anonymous, “Miss Ingram Tells of Poet's Gift of a Copy of Ulalume,” New York Herald, February 19, 1905
  • Anonymous, “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Explicator, October 1942, 1:8
  • Adkins, Nelson F., “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Notes & Queries, January 14, 1933, 164:30-31
  • Bailey, James O., “The Geography of Poe's ‘Dream-Land’ and ‘Ulalume’,” Studies in Philology, July 1948, 45:512-523
  • Basler, Roy P., “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Explicator, May 1944, vol. 2, item 49; reprinted in Sex, Symbolism and Psychology, New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 1948, pp. 184-187
  • Blumenfeld, J. P., “Poe's ‘Ulalume,’ Line 43,” Notes & Queries, March 29, 1952, 197:147
  • Brooks, Cleanth and Robert Penn Warren, “ ‘Ulalume’,” Understand Poetry, New York: Henry Holt, 1950, 194-201 (revised new edition)
  • Caputi, Anthony, “The Refrain in Poe's Poetry,” American Literature, May 1953, 25:169-178
  • Carlson, Eric W., “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Explicator, June 1952, 11:56
  • Carlson, Eric W., “Symbol and Sense in Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” American Literature, March 1963, 35:22-37
  • Colton, Cullen B., “George Hooker Colton and the Publication of ‘The Raven’,” American Literature, vol. X, no. 3, November 1938, pp. 319-330 (footnote 30 on p. 328 provides the comment about the manuscript)
  • Connolly, Thomas, “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Explicator, September 1963, vol. 22, item 4
  • Daughrity, K. L., “Source for a line of Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Notes & Queries, July 11, 1931, 161:27
  • 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.
  • Holt, Palmer, “Notes on Poe's ‘To Science,’ ‘To Helen,’ and ‘Ulalume’,” Bulletin of the New York Public Library, November 1959, 63:568-570
  • Kiehl, James, “Valley of Unrest: A Major Metaphor in the Poetry of Edgar Allan Poe,” Thoth, Winter 1964, 5:42-52
  • Kirby, John P., “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Explicator, October 1942, vol 1, item 8
  • [LeDuc, Mary Elizabeth], “Recollections of Edgar A. Poe,” Home Journal, July 21, 1860.
  • Laverty, Carroll, “Poe in 1847,” American Literature, May 1948, 20:163-168 (reprints the article by Mary E. LeDuc)
  • Leary, Lewis, “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Explicator, February 1948, vol. 6, item 25
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, “The Astrological Symbolism of Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Notes & Queries, July 11, 1931, 161:26-27
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Explicator, Feburary 1943, vol. 1, item 25
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Explicator, June 1948, vol. 6, item 57
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Notes & Queries, February 25, 1933, 164:143
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, ed., The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe (Vol 1 Poems), Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1969.
  • Miller, James, Jr., “ ‘Ulalume’ Resurrected,” Philological Quarterly,  April 1955, 34:197-205
  • Mulqueen, James E., “The Meaning of Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” American Transcendental Quarterly, 1st Quarter 1969, 1:27-30
  • Olivero, Frederico, “Symbolism in Poe's Poetry,” Westminster Review, April 1913, 180:201-207
  • Omans, Glen A., “Poe's ‘Ulalume‘: Drama of the Solipsistic Self,” in Papers on Poe: Essays in Honor of John Ward Ostrom, Springfield, OH: 1972
  • Pattee, Fred Lewis, “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Side-Lights on American Literature, New York: Century Co., 1922, pp. 327-342
  • Pittman, Diana, “Key to the Mystery of ‘Ulalume’,” Southern Literary Messenger, August 1941, 3:371-378 (this is the renewed version of the SLM)
  • Robinson, David, “ ‘Ulalume’: The Ghouls and the Critics,” Poe Studies, 1975, 8:8-10
  • Routh, James, “Notes on the Sources of Poe's Poetry: Coleridge, Keats, Shelley,” Modern Language Notes, March 1914, 29:72-75
  • Tinnon, J. A., “Poe's ‘Ulalume’,” Graham's Magazine, February 1851, 38:120-122
  • Savoye, Jeffrey A., “An Unnoticed Printing of ‘Ulalume’,” The Edgar Allan Poe Review, vol. I, no. 2 (Fall 2000), pp. 34-44
  • White, Patrick J., “The Thing Needed: Hope and Despair in ‘Ulalume,” Masques, Mysteries, and Mastodons: A Poe Miscellany, ed. Benjamin F. Fisher, Baltimore: Edgar Allan Poe Society, 2006, pp. 1-16


[S:0 - JAS] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Poems - Ulalume