Edgar Allan Poe — “The Business Man”





  • (narrator) - Under development.


Location - Under development.

Date - Under development.


Under development.


Reading and Reference Texts:

Reading copy:

  • “The Business Man” — reading copy


Historical Texts:

Manuscripts and Authorized Printings:

  • Text-01 — “Peter Pendulum, The Business Man” — late 1839 or very early 1840 (There are no known draft manuscripts or scratch notes reflecting the original effort of composition. Mabbott (T&S, 2:481) states without explanation that the story “was presumably composed shortly before its publication early in 1840.” The assumption is likely based on the fact that Burton's was generally available by the middle of the month prior to the month of issue, and the idea that Poe, at this point as an editor of the magazine, was publishing tales pretty much as he wrote them.)
  • Text-02 — “Peter Pendulum, The Business Man” —
    • Text-02a — “Peter Pendulum, The Business Man” — late 1839 or very early 1840 (speculated faircopy manuscript, prepared for publication in Burton's. No such manuscript is known to have survived, but this version is presumably recorded in Text-02b.)
    • Text-02b — “Peter Pendulum, The Business Man” — February 1840 — Burton's — (Mabbott text A)
  • Text-03 — “The Business Man” —
    • Text-03a — “The Business Man” — 1842 — TGAPP (manuscript of title only) — (The tale is listed in Poe's handwritten table of contents, but the text itself no longer survives. It was probably a modified version of the printed text from Burton's, with a manuscript appended for the seven new paragraphs at the end, and is presumably recorded, with perhaps a few additional changes made in proof, in Text-03b)
    • Text-03b — “The Business Man” — probably May 6, 1843, — Saturday Museum (Philadelphia, PA), vol. I, no. 22 [T. O. Mabbott speculated, in his edition of the Tales & Sketches, 1978, 2:481, almost as a wild guess, that Poe would not have had time or motive for the extensive changes present in the 1845 text, and suggesting that a revised version of the tale might be found in the incomplete files of the Philadelphia Saturday Museum of 1843 or the New York Sunday Times of 1844. The later discovery of the two reprints from 1843, which Dr. Mabbott did not see, suggested that he was correct in his suspicion, although invalidating the later possiblity. The original source of that printing was still a mystery until April of 2019, when Jeffrey A. Savoye found, among the J. H. Whitty papers of Duke University, a photostat of a clipping of the initial part of the tale, without date but with the note “Re-written for the Saturday Museum.” The date is not included on the clipping, but the Museum was printed on Saturdays, and the reprints of May 10 and 11 strongly suggest May 6, the closest previous Saturday, as the original date. Sadly, the clipping, at least as it exists in the form of an old photostat, preserves only a few fragments of the text. Fortunately, the rest of the text can be assumed based on the two contemporary reprints.]
  • Text-04 — “The Business Man” —
    • Text-04a — “The Business Man” — before August 2, 1845 — (speculated revision of Text-04, in preparation for reprinting in the Broadway Journal. This text was probably in the form of changes made in manuscript on a copy of the text as printed in the Saturday Museum. Since Poe was himself the editor of the Broadway Journal, he would not have been especially concerned about presentation, other than to provide a text that would meet the needs of a typesetter, and avoid typographical errors. This form of the text has not survived, but is presumably reflected in Text-06, perhaps with a few additional changes made in proof as Poe obviously had direct contact with the typesetters.)
    • Text-04b — “The Business Man” — August 2, 1845 — Broadway Journal — (Mabbott text B) (For Griswold's 1856 reprinting of this text, see the entry below, under reprints.)



  • The Business Man” — May 10, 1843 (presumably reprinted from Text-04) — Providence Daily Journal  (This text is reprinted by Reilly)
  • The Business Man” — May 11, 1843 (presumably reprinted from Providence Daily Journal as the type appears to be identical, including typographical errors, line breaks and spacing) — Manufacturers and Farmers and Providence and Pawtucket Advertiser)   (This text was reproduced, essentially as a photocopy, by Cameron)
  • The Business Man” — 1856 — WORKS — (Mabbott text C — This is Mabbott's copy-text) (reprinted from Text-06, with changes that are so minor that they are very likely editorial or typographical rather than authorial.)
  • “The Business Man” — March 6, 1861 — Spirit of Democracy (Woodsfield, OH) (vol XVII, no. 52, p. 1, cols. 1-4) (noted as by Edgar A. Poe)
  • “The Business Man” — 1867 — Prose Tales of Edgar Allan Poe, second series (New York: W. J. Widdleton), pp. 489-498 (This collection is extracted from the 1850-1856 edition of Poe's Works. It was reprinted several times.)
  • The Business Man” — 1874 — Works of Edgar A. Poe, edited by J. H. Ingram, vol. 2, pp. 560-569 (This collection was subsequently reprinted in various forms)


Scholarly and Noteworthy Reprints:

  • The Business Man” — 1894-1895 — The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 4: Tales, ed. G. E. Woodberry and E. C. Stedman, Chicago: Stone and Kimball (4:158-170) (This collection was subsequently reprinted in various forms)
  • The Business Man” — 1902 — The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 4: Tales III, ed. J. A. Harrison, New York: T. Y. Crowell (4:122-133, and 4:285-287)
  • Peter Pendulum (The Business Man)” — 1978 — The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, vol. 2: Tales & Sketches I, ed. T. O. Mabbott, Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (2:480-493)
  • “The Business Man” — 1984 — Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Tales, ed. Patrick F. Quinn (New York: Library of America), pp. 373-381


Comparative and Study Texts:

Instream Comparative and Study Texts:


Associated Material and Special Versions:

Miscellaneous Texts and Related Items:

  • “Un homme d‘affaires” — 1885 — Oeuvres Choisies d‘Edgar Pöe, Paris: A. Hennuyer  (French translation by William L. Hughes)
  • “L‘homme d‘affaires” — 1887 — Edgar Poë: Derniers Contes, Paris: Albert Savine  (French translation by Félix Rabbe)
  • ”L‘Homme d‘affaires” — 1950 — Histories grotesques et sérieuse par Edgar Poe, Paris: Classiques Garnier  (French translation by Léon Lemonnier)
  • “The Business Man” — 2017 — Audio book (unabridged), read by Chris Aruffo



  • Cameron, Kenneth, The New England Writers and the Press, Hartford: Transcendental Books, 1980, pp. 9-11 (reprints the text from Manufacturers and Farmers and Providence and Pawtucket Advertiser.
  • 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.
  • Lemay, J. A. Leo, Poe's ‘The Business man’: Its Contexts and Satire of Franklin's Autobiography,” Poe Studies (1982), 15:29-37.
  • 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.
  • Reilly, John E., “The ‘Missing’ Version of Edgar Allan Poe's ‘The Business Man’,” American Periodicals, IX, 1999, pp. 1-14.
  • Savoye, Jeffrey A., “Poe's 1843 Text of ‘The Business Man’,” Edgar Allan Poe Review, vol 20, no. 2 (Fall 2019), 20:305-307.
  • Wyllie, John Cooke, “A List of the Texts of Poe's Tales,” Humanistic Studies in Honor of John Calvin Metcalf, Charlottesville: University of Virginia, 1941, pp. 322-338.


[S:0 - JAS] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Tales - The Business Man