Edgar Allan Poe — “Annabel Lee”


Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:

  • “Annabel Lee” — reading copy


Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings:

This poem was only published after Poe’s death, and therefore all of the authorized texts are in the form of manuscripts. Several of these manuscripts served as the source for subsequent printings, beginning with Griswold’s obituary of Poe in the New-York Daily Tribune of October 9, 1849. All of the manuscripts are fair-copy drafts, featuring a clean text with no corrections. All include Poe’s name in a byline, suggesting that Poe intended them for publication.

  • Text-01 — “Annabel Lee” — late May 1849 — “Griswold” manuscript  (Mabbott text A)  (This is Mabbott’s first copy-text for the poem) (for Griswold’s three printings of this manuscript, see his texts for the New-York Daily Tribune, The Poets and Poetry of America and WORKS) (The manuscript passed from the estate of Rufus Wilmot Griswold, to his exectuor, George Henry Moore, and eventally back to Griswold’s son, William Griswold, and remained with the family until it was donated to the Harvard Library.)
  • Text-02 — “Annabel Lee” — June 1849 — “Moore” manuscript — (Mabbott text B) (The manuscript currently resides in the Gimble Collection of the Philadelphia Free Public Library.
  • Text-03 — “Annabel Lee” — July 1849 — “Hirst” manuscript — (Mabbott text C) (Poe gave this manuscript to H. B. Hirst when he was in Philadelphia, on his way south to promote his magazine plans. It was sold at auction by Hirst’s descendants in 1921. The manuscript is currently in the Huntington Library, San Marion, CA.)
  • Text-04 — “Annabel Lee” — July 1849 — “Sartain” manuscript — (Mabbott text D) (for Sartain’s printing of this manuscript, see his text for Sartain’s”) (The manuscript currently resides in the Morgan Pierpont Library in New York.)
  • Text-05 — “Annabel Lee” — September 26, 1849 — “Thompson” manuscript — (Mabbott text E)  (This is Mabbott’s second copy-text for the poem) (For the two printings from this manuscript, see the Richmond Examiner proof sheets, and the Southern Literary Messenger) (The manuscript was sold at auction by Bangs, Merwin & Co. of New York, June 19, 1873, from the estate of John R. Thompson, along with a letter, for $180, by Isaac Michael Dyckman of New York. It passed to Dyckman’s widow, who eventually gave it to the library of Columbia University, where it curently resides.



This poem was widely reprinted in October 1849 as part of an obituary for Poe. Both “Annabel Lee” and “The Bells” were alternately given the status of “Poe’s last poem,” although the last poems actually composed appear to have been “Annabel Lee” and “Sonnet to My Mother.”

  • Annabel Lee” — about September 1849 — Richmond Examiner proof sheets — (Mabbott text F) (presumably printed from the “Thompson” manuscript)
  • Annabel Lee” — October 9, 1849 — New-York Daily Tribune  (The “Ludwig” obituary)  (Mabbott text G)
  • Annabel Lee” — late 1849 — Poets and Poetry of America (10th edition, dated 1850)  (Mabbott text J)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 13, 1849 — Gazette of the Union, Golden Rule, and Odd Fellow’s Family Companion (vol. XI, no. 15, p. 240, col. 2) (apparently reprinted from the New York Tribune, based on the fact that it cites the Tribune and quotes two sentences from the obituary notice before giving the full poem.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 13, 1849 — Literary World, New York
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 13, 1849 — McMakin’s Model American Courier, Philadephia, PA (Although this article is by H. B. Hirst, and Hirst owned a copy of an original manuscript of the poem, this text was reprinted by the editor, and taken from Griswold’s obituary of Poe in the New York Tribune)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 16, 1849 — Richmond Enquirer (Richmond, VA), vol. XLVI, no. 48, p. 4 (reprinted as part of the obituary from the Tribune, acknowledged)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 16, 1849  — New-York Tribune (California edition)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 16, 1849 — Troy Post, Troy, NY
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 16, 1849  — Evening Post (New York, NY), vol. XLVII (no issue number), p. 1, col. 7 (with the introductory note: “The following beautiful poem is said to have been the last thing written by Poe, whose death it was our painful duty to announce only a week since. Nothing that ever came from his pen better illustrates his unsurpassing mastery of the rythm and melody of English verse.” This note was repeated in some other reprints.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 18, 1849 — Boston Emancipator and Republican, Boston, MA
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 18, 1849 — Lynchburg Virginian, Lynchburg, VA (reprinted as part of the “Ludwig” obituary from the Tribune)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 19, 1849 — Tri-Weekly American, Lowell, MA  (Reprinted from NY Tribune)
  • Annabel Lee” — October 20, 1849 — Home Journal  (Reprinted in N. P. Willis’s article “The Death of Poe,” in quoting from the “Ludwig” obituary from the Tribune)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 20, 1849 — Albion, New York, NY
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 20, 1849 — Gem of the Prairie, Chicago, IL
  • Annabel Lee” — October 20, 1849  — New-York Weekly Tribune
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 20, 1849 — Saturday Evening Post (Philadelphia)  (reprinted as part of the “Ludwig” obituary from the Tribune)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 22, 1849 — Rochester Democrat, Rochester, NY
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 23, 1849 — Evening Mirror (NY)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 23, 1849 — New York Republican, Troy, NY
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 24, 1849 — Dollar Newspaper (Philadelphia)  (reprinted as part of the “Ludwig” obituary from the Tribune)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 25, 1849 — Buffalo Daily Republic (Buffalo, NY), vol. 3, whole no. 838, p. 3, top of col. 2 (with the brief introductory note: “On leaving New York for Virginia, Mr. Poe handed the following beautiful poem, in manuscript, to a friend, and it is probably his last production.”) (Reprinted from the New York Tribune)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 27, 1849 — Boston Weekly Museum and Literary Portfolio (reprinted as part of an obituary from the New York Metropolis)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 29, 1849 — New Orleans Weekly Delta, New Orleans, LA
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 29, 1849 — Daily Toledo Blade, Toledo, OH
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 31, 1849 — Cleveland Plain Dealer, Cleveland, OH
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 31, 1849 — Marysville Tribune, Marysville, OH  (probably reprinted from NY Tribune)
  • Annabel Lee” — November 1849 — Southern Literary Messenger — (Mabbott text H) (presumably printed from the “Thompson” manuscript)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 1849 — Western Literary Messenger, Buffalo, NY (published by Calvin F. S. Thomas)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 1, 1849 — Pittsfield Sun, Pittsfield, MA
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 2, 1849 — Lebanon Western Star, Lebanon, OH
  • “Annable [[Annabel]] Lee” — November 3, 1849 — Portland Transcript (ME) (Vol. XIII)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 3, 1849 — Hartford Weekly Times, Hartford, CT  (Reprinted from the New York Tribune)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 3, 1849 — Freeman’s Journal (Cooperstown, NY), vol. XLII, no. 10, p. 1, col. 1 (with the brief introductory note: “The following beautiful lines were written by the late Edgar A. Poe, a few days before his death.”) (Reprinted from the New York Tribune)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 3, 1849 — Pittsburgh Saturday Visiter, Pittsburgh, PA
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 3, 1849 — Portland Transcript, Portland, ME
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 3, 1849 — Literary Union, Syracuse, NY  (Reprinted as part of the “Ludwig” obituary)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 7, 1849 — Painesville Telegraph, Painesville, OH
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 7, 1849 — New Hampshire Gazette and Republican Union, Portsmouth, NH
  • “[Annabel Lee]” — November 8, 1849 — Vincennes Gazette, Vincennes, IN
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 9, 1849 — Daily Chronicle and Sentinel, Augusta, GA
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 10, 1849 — Freeman’s Journal (Cooperstown, NY), vol. XLII, no. 12, p. 1, col. 1
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 12, 1849 — Nova Scotian, Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 13, 1849 — Weekly Democrat, Chicago, IL  (by “the late E. A. Poe”)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 14, 1849 — Rome Citizen, Rome, NY
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 16, 1849 — Schenectady Reflector, Schenectady, NY, vol. XV, no. 46, p. 1, col. 2 (with the heading “The Last Lines of Edgar A. Poe.”)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 23, 1849 — Indiana State Weekly Journal, Indianapolis, IN
  • “Annabel Lee” — December 12, 1849  — Madison County Whig (Cazenovia, NY), vol. IX, no. 43, p. 1, col. 2 (with the same introductory note as the New York Evening Post, unacknowledged)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1850 — The Present or a Gift for the Times, Manchester, New Hampshire, edited by F. A. Moore
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1850 — Thomas Powell, The Living Writers of America, New York: Stringer and Townsend, 1850, pp. 126-127
  • Annabel Lee” — January 1850 — Sartain’s — (Mabbott text K) (printed from the “Sartain” manuscript)
  • Annabel Lee” — 1850 — WORKS — (Mabbott text L)
  • “Annabel Lee” — February 9, 1850 — New England Washingtonian, Boston, MA
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1853 — Thalatta: A Book for the Sea-Side, Boston: Ticknor, Reed, and Field, pp. 188-189 (This is a collection of poetry by various authors, from Bryant to Wordsworth, all with some kind of sea connection. This poem is the only Poe item in the collection.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1853 — An Offering to Beauty, Lowell: Merrill and Straw (The full title of this ornately bound book is: An Offering to Beauty: Composed of the Choicest Descriptions of Female Loveliness, Virtue, Accomplishments, Attractions, and Chams; Comprising the Poetry of Woman, edited by J. W. Hanson. Poe’s poem appears on pp. 226-228.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — February 1854 — Southern Literary Messenger
  • Annabel Lee” — February 1854 — Graham’s  (reprinted in a biographical notice, pp. 216-225)
  • “Annabel Lee” — February 10, 1854 — Melbourne Banner (Melbourne, Australia), p. 4. (this entry was provided to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie, in an e-mail dated January 17, 2017)
  • “Annabel Lee” — April 1854 — North-Carolina University Magazine (vol. III, p. 116, col. 1) (signed as "by Edgar Allan Poe")
  • “Annabel Lee” — March 8, 1856 — Freeman’s Journal (Sydney, Australia) (mysteriously ascribed only to L.) (this entry was provided to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie, in an e-mail dated January 17, 2017)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1858 — Achievements of Americans, Cincinnati: Henry Howe  (along with “The Raven”)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 8, 1864  — Home Journal
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1865 — Golden Leaves from the American Poets, collected by John W. S. Hows, New York: Bunce and Huntington (This common collection of popular poems includes works by Poe, Emerson, Longfellow, J. R. Lowell, F. S. Key, Whittier, and others.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — February 17, 1866 — Otago Witness (New Zealand), p. 140 (a typographical error in this text has “Yes; this was the reason . . .” read instead as “Yes; this was the season . . .”) (this entry was provided to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie, in an e-mail dated January 17, 2017)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1867 — Roses and Holly, a Gift-Book for all the Year (published by J. B. Lippincott)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1868 — Chimes for Childhood: A Collection of Songs for Little Ones, Dana Estes, ed., Boston: Lee & Shepard (pp. 92-95) (reprinted 1871)
  • Annabel Lee” — 1875 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol 3: Poems  and Essays, ed. J. H. Ingram, Edinburgh, Adam and Charles Black (3:18-19)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1883 — Surf and Wave, or, the Sea as Sung, New York: Thomas Y. Crowell and Co. (this poem is one of two by Poe included in this collection, the other being “The City in the Sea”)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 1889 — Current Literature (vol. 3, p. 326) (this item is noted by George Monteiro, “Fugitive Reprints,” E. A. Poe Review, Fall 2010, p. 162.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — August 10, 1899 — Republican Herald (Phoenix, AZ) (p. 6) (this item is noted by George Monteiro, “Fugitive Reprints,” E. A. Poe Review, Fall 2010, p. 162.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 6, 1907 — The State (Columbia, SC) (p. 26) (this item is noted by George Monteiro, “Fugitive Reprints,” E. A. Poe Review, Fall 2010, p. 162.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — January 17, 1909 — the New York Times (facsimile of the manuscript given to John W. Moore)
  • “Annabel Lee” — November 14, 1920 — Macon Daily Telegraph (p. 6) (this item is noted by George Monteiro, “Fugitive Reprints,” E. A. Poe Review, Fall 2010, p. 162.)
  • Annabel Lee — December 17, 1935 — Chillicothe Ohio: Old Capitol Book Shop (a very curious item, which is, as stated, “printed on the outside margins of an old book Two-Hundred and Fifty years old.” The newer book was printed in a limited run of 100 numbered copies, and the edge of the text of the old book can be seen running along the bottom of each page. The new book is edited by David K. Webb, and originally sold for $5. It measured 3 1/2 inches wide by 5 1/4 inches high, with 20 pages. The text of the old book appears to be German, and it would have been printed in 1680 on heavy rag paper.)
  • and many others


Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • Annabel Lee” — 1894-1895 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 10: Poems, ed. E. C. Stedman and G. E. Woodberry (Chicago: Stone and Kimball), 10:41-42 and 10:186
  • Annabel Lee” — 1902 — The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 7: Poems, ed. J. A. Harrison (New York: T. Y. Crowell), 10:117-118 and 10:218-221  (The full text of the “Griswold” manuscript is given in the notes)
  • Annabel Lee” — 1911 — The Complete Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. J. H. Whitty (Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Co.), pp. 80-82 and pp. 242-244
  • Annabel Lee” — 1917 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Killis Campbell (Boston: Ginn and Company), pp. 134-135 and pp. 293-297
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1965 — The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Floyd Stovall (Charlottesville: The University Press of Virginia), pp. 124-125 and pp. 287-290
  • Annabel Lee” — 1969 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 1: Poems, ed. T. O. Mabbott (Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press), 1:468-481  (Mabbott prints two versions of the poem)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, ed. Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America), pp. 102-103 (reprints the text from Text-06b)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 2004 — The Selected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. G. R. Thompson (New York: W. W. Norton & Co.), pp. 75-76
  • “Annabel Lee” — 2015 — The Annotated Poe, ed. Kevin J. Hayes (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press), pp. 393-395


Comparative and Study Texts:

Instream Comparative and Study Texts:


Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • “[Annabel Lee]” — (1857 — “Edgar Allan Poe,” Magazin für die Literatur des Auslandes, 130:519-520.)  (German translation by Luise von Ploennis.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1862 — Lieder und Balladenbuch amerikanischer und englischer Dichter der Gegenwart, Hamburg: Hoffman and Campe, pp. 48-49 (translation by Adolf Strodtmann. This entry was provided to the Poe Society by Ton Fafianie, in an e-mail dated October 11, 2018)
  • “Annabel Lee” — about 1890 — London: National Institute for the Blind  (a special printing in Moon type, similar to Braille in that it was intended for blind readers, but a very different system based more closely on a simplified Roman alphabet, developed by Dr. William Moon in the mid-1840s.)
  • “[Annabel Lee]” — April 1919 — The Feather (New York) (Yiddish translation, considerably abbreviated) (The subtitle of the periodical is “A Monthly Journal Devoted to Literature, Art and Critic[ism]” It was published by the Literary Collegues Group, for which “Aron Carlin” is noted as the Literary Secretary. Everything other than the title page is in Yiddish. Aaron Carlin (1887-ca. 1945?) was a noted Yiddish editor, poet and translator. It is possible that the translation was done by him.)
  • “Annabel Lee” — October 6, 1941 — for a radio broadcast on The Mercury Theater of the Air show, read by Orson Welles.
  • “[Annabel Lee]” — October 1949 — De Tsjerne, vol. 4, no. 10, pp. ???-??? (Dokkum, Netherlands, published by J. Kamminga) (Frisian translation by Dam Jaarsma)  (This title provided by René van Slooten)
  • “Annabel Lee” — 1960 — a reading by Nelson Olmsted on The Raven: Poems and Tales of Edgar Allan Poe, issued on the Vanguard label (VRS-9046, rereleased as VSD-32)
  • “Annabel Lee” — dated 2009, but available in late 2008 — Poèmes d‘Edgar Allan Poe, Paris: Publibook (translation by Jean Hautepierre)


  • “Annabel Lee” — (full manuscript, on two connected sheets, each measuring 4 5/16 x 7 inches, with 1/2 inch of each overlapping, and forming, in total height, 13 inches. The text is written in what appears to be dark brown ink, running from left to right edges, on only one side of the page, apparently in an attempt to imitate Poe’s use of roll manuscripts. There are some fold creases, and light staining. The paper is described as “light green tinted,” but may be an oddly faded blue. To a casual observer, the manuscript provides a convincing appearance, but is clearly a careful copy of the Thompson manuscript, reproduced in facsimile by Woodberry, 1909, 2:352, or the manuscript given to John W. Moore, which was given in facsimile in the New York Times, January 17, 1909. Poe’s name appears in the byline, near the top, and at the bottom, where the page is slightly torn, revealing “[Ford]ham New York.’ The fragment was offered as a genuine Poe manuscript by New England Book Auctions, Sale Number 366, October 21, 2008, as item 206, with an estimate of $30,000-$50,000, but was promptly retracted from sale over doubts about its authenticity. It was in the collection of Richard Oinonen, who died in 2001, and is probably the work of Joseph Cosey. It may have been kept by Mr. Oinonen as an example of a forgery by someone who was notably notorious in the field, especially for his Poe forgeries. It bears a strong resemblance to a forgery of “The Black Cat,” offered in the same sale as item 204.)



  • Booth, Bradford A., “The Identity of ‘Annabel Lee‘,” College English, October 1945, 7:17-19
  • Brown, Wallace C., “The English Professor’s Dilemma,” College English, April 1944, 5:380-385
  • Empric, Julienne H., “A Note on “Annabel Lee‘,” Poe Studies, June 1973, 6:26
  • Gross, Seymour L., “The Reflection of Conrad Aiken’s ’Strange Moonlight’,” Modern Language Notes, March 1957, 72:185-189
  • 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.
  • Law, Robert A., “A Source of ‘Annabel Lee‘,” Journal of English and Germanic Philology, October 2, 1922, 21:341-346
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, ed., The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe (Vol 1 Poems), Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1969.
  • Melton, W. F., “Some Autobiographical Notes in Poe’s Poetry,” South Atlantic Quarterly, April 1912, 11:175-179
  • Routh, James, “Notes on the Sources of Poe’s Poetry: Coleridge, Keats, Shelley,” Modern Language Notes, March 1914, 29:72-75


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