Text: Edgar Allan Poe, “Preface” (Text-03), J. L. Graham copy of The Raven and Other Poems (1845), with Poe's manuscript changes, 1845-1849, p. iii


[page iii, unnumbered:]



THESE trifles are collected and republished chiefly with a view to their redemption from the many improvements to which they have been subjected while going “the rounds of the press.” I am naturally anxious that if what I have written is to circulate at all, it should circulate as I wrote it. In defence of my own taste, nevertheless, it is incumbent on me to say that I think nothing in this volume of much value to the public, or very creditable to myself. Events not to be controlled have prevented me from making, at any time, any serious effort in what, under happier circumstances, would have been the field of my choice. With me poetry has been not a purpose, but a passion; and the passions should be held in reverence; they must not — they cannot at will be excited, with an eye to the paltry compensations, or the more paltry commendations, of mankind.

E. A. P




Marks in the margin indicated the deletion of “at random,” the “up” from “upon” and the comma after “say.” They also indicate the transposition of the phrase “I am naturally anxious that” and the insertion of the comma after “excited.”

For a detailed analysis of the changes made in this version, see the study text.



[S:1 - RAOP-JLG, 1846-1849 (fac, 1942)] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Preface to The Raven and Other Poems (Text-03)