Text: Edgar Allan Poe, “Annabel Lee” (Text-02), “Moore” manuscript, June 1849


Annabel Lee.

By Edgar A. Poe.

It was many and many a year ago,

In a kingdom by the sea,

That a maiden there lived whom you may know

By the name of Annabel Lee; —

And this maiden she lived with no other thought

Than to love and be loved by me.

She was a child and I was a child,

In this kingdom by the sea,

But we loved with a love that was more than love —

I and my Annabel Lee —

With a love that the wingèd seraphs in Heaven

Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago,

In this kingdom by the sea,

A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling

My beautiful Annabel Lee;

So that her high-born kinsmen came

And bore her away from me,

To shut her up in a sepulchre,

In this kingdom by the sea.

The angels, not half so happy in Heaven,

Went envying her and me —

Yes! — that was the reason (as all men know,

In this kingdom by the sea)

That the wind came out of the cloud by night,

Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.

But our love it was stronger by far than the love

Of those who were older than we —

Of many far wiser than we —

And neither the angels in Heaven above,

Nor the demons down under the sea

Can ever dissever my soul from the soul

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee: —

For the moon never beams, without bringing me dreams

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; —

And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side

Of my darling — my darling — my life and my bride,

In her sepulchre there by the sea —

In her tomb by the sounding sea.



This manuscript is now in the Gimbel collection of the Philadelphia Free Public Library. It was donated to the Poe Foundation in 1950, at the death of Elizabeth “Lisa” C. Norris Elkins (1898-1950), the widow of William M. Elkins (1882-1947). The designation of a repository for the manuscript was actually a matter for the Orphan’s Court of Philadelphia on May 27, 1952 (see Philadelphia Inquirer, May 28, 1952, p. 48, cols. 1-2). The original owner was John W. Moore, a bookkeeper of the Merchant’s Exchange in New York city. Moore gave the manuscript to a niece in Canada, who married Dr. Donald Duncan MacDonald (1858-1927), of Petitcodiac, N. B., Canada. The manuscript was acquired by Dr. Van Buren Thorne (1870-1935), of New Brunswick, before 1909, by which time he had moved to New York City (see New York Times, January 17, 1909). Elkins was a prominent and wealthy collector, and presumably purchased it from Thorne.

The manuscript is written in brown ink on the front side only of two quarto sheets of light-blue, unlined paper. The two sheets have been joined to form a roll manuscript, as was Poe’s habit. The second sheet begins with the line “The angels, not half so happy in Heaven.”


[S:s - MS, 1849] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Poems - Annabel Lee (Text-02)