Text: Burton R. Pollin, “Special Elements and Abbreviations,” The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan PoeVol. II: The Brevities (1985), pp. xv-xxiv (This material is protected by copyright)


[page lvii:]


l. As far as possible Poe’s text is reprinted with minimal changes and these are invariably recorded in the list of “Typographical Errors” in the Introduction or through the insertion of bracketed letters. No changes are made in the accidentals of the English text, even where our usage is different, as with commas adjoining parentheses; his use or nonuse of italics or quotation marks for book and article titles is followed. However the accents of incorrect foreign words are silently corrected and listed in the “Typos.” Occasionally for early French citations where inconsistencies were common and usage was not determined, the commentary will preserve the old forms or discuss those that Poe used. When the end — of — sentence period is misprinted, the correction is shown in the “Typos” list (with the article locus) and silently corrected in the text. Digraphs are accorded special treatment for reasons discussed in the special section of the Introduction.

2. The spellings of English words are not changed unless there is a clear warrant for listing the words as “typos.” British or uncommon spellings, allowed in the period, are retained — wizzard and synonyme, apothegm and apophthegm, but a “typo” is printed as “apop[h1thegm” without being included in the “typos” list. Allowed forms, although inconsistent, are retained, such as Werter and Werther, and special spellings justifiable for earlier printing or citations, such as Pierce Plowman’s Vision of “Langlande” or “Gualtier” for “Gaultier.”

3. Poe’s idiosyncratic printing of the dieresis (on the first of two sounded vowels, not the second as is well-nigh universal) is retained and even normalized for errors, such as “náivety” which becomes “näivety” and given a place among the “typos.” See the section on “Dieresis and Digraph” in the Introduction.

4. All notes or commentaries to the text are called “Note” if single for the given article or else are lettered “a” or “b” or “c” etc. with a boldface letter and a guide word directly below the text in which the guide word shows a superscript letter for “vertical” reference. All cross references are made via abbreviations, given in the list below: CS (Chapter of Suggestions), FS (Fifty Suggestions), LST (Literary Small Talk), M (Marginalia), Pin (Pinakidia), SM Supplementary Marginalia), and SP (Supplementary Pinakidia). Please note that Marginalia 139 is in three parts, labeled M 139A or B or C, whereas references to the commentary notes would always be made to lower case letters, e.g., 79a, or 291b. The notes may refer to the text alone (numeral with no letter) or to a discussion found in the commentary paragraphs (numeral plus lower case letters). This is also true for the Index references at the back. Quotation marks are not used for the titles given to the seven sections.

5. The text is preserved intact as in the printing by Poe (or indirectly in the SM, by the editor), save for the limited editorial silent corrections, all listed in the Introduction or indicated in brackets. The decorated letters of the Democratic Review installments are not preserved. Since Poe invariably omitted Latin and Greek accents and markings, these are not added to this text, but those of modern foreign language words are corrected.

6. The hyphenations within the lines are those of Poe’s text. For the end-of-line hyphenations of Poe’s text see the list and headnote in the Introduction, likewise the list of ambiguous hyphenations in The Brevities.

7. For correlative data see Index under authors, titles, other persons, and subjects, keyed to the text not by pages but by section and, often, by the letter of commentary or by n (“note”).

8. All the sections have been numbered editorially save for the Fifty Suggestions, which first bore Poe’s arabic numerals. For the Supplementary Marginalia the numbers of the 1850 edition are given in the “provenance” list of the discussion in the Introduction for the Supplementary Marginalia.

9. In general, basic, simplified bibliographic data about the edition used for citation or discussion are provided in the earliest citation (q.v. via the Index), but the most important [page lviii:] or most frequently used source texts are also identified in the Introduction.

10. The system of multi-volume or periodicals/volume/page citation is uniform with arabic numbers for both, separated by a period, not by a colon. Thus, for a volume of Harrison’s set of Poe’s works: 10.135 means vol. 10, p. 135; and for Poe Studies, 15.7-13, means volume 15, pages 7-13. Where the topic of the reference is clear, the title of the article cited is often omitted. In general arabic rather than roman numerals are used for all act/scene/line citations of plays and for (poetic) book/stanza/line citations.

11. Pages are frequently cited without “p.” or “pp.“, especially for basic texts, such as TOM’s Tales or A. H. Quinn’s biography of Poe or Pollin’s “Dictionary” or Word Index to Poe’s Fiction. Note that TOM is often cited for the text of Tales and Sketches, sometimes alone, without the book title. This does not refer to TOM’s comment, only to the text, regarded as definitive. For other Poe texts, especially of reviews, besides the reference to the original magazine loci, the Harrison text is given simply as “H” without any period. For a newspaper (e.g. Evening Mirror), “214” means “p. 2, column 4.” For a tale, “364/13” means “p. 364, line 13.”

12. Space is saved and unnecessary clutter avoided through use of obvious abbreviations (all listed) such as ref., para., L, and through dropping the month of most periodical publications in cited criticisms.

13. Almost all dates are cited in arabic numerals, with slashes, thus: month/day/ year; e.g, 6/13/36 — June 13, 1836. A two digit figure for the year is, assumedly, 18 —. All other centuries require a four digit figure, i.e., 1756 or 1910.

14. The notes (or commentaries) are not printed as footnotes but rather as part of the continuing text, separated from Poe’s published text through special headings, boldface letters, guide words, horizontal “rules” of different thicknesses and lengths, and differentiated spacing. The paragraphing generally is close to Poe’s original, even though I am convinced that he would have authorized block — indentation for quoted material had there been more space in the narrow columns of text used for his Brevities. However, additional line spacings above and below such insertions usually make the arrangement of the text clear, and these spaces correspond to those of the original. The size of typefont has been a problem; for blocks of quoted material, smaller in type than the regular text, I have used a slightly smaller type. Sometimes the original was the same size but leaded to appear smaller through narrower lines and less spacing. The dividers employed by Poe were short rules, equivalent to a long dash. These I have arbitrarily changed to a two inch long light rule before the annotations, for the sake of easy differentiation of the two sections of each “article” in the seven sections. There are 602 articles in the seven sections. Poe’s footnote references to the titles of books are preserved as part of the text, with the original markings (such as the dagger) given. If his footnote has to be annotated, it received a superscript for discussion according to its approximate location in my text.


[page lix:]


AED or DAE : Dictionary of American English on Historical Principles W. A. Craigie, ed., (1936-44)

AL: American Literature

ANQ: American Notes and Queries

AWM: Alexander’s Weekly Messenger

BGM: Burton’s Gentleman’s Magazine

Bien Penser: La Manière de lien Penser [Dominique Bouhours]

ch.: chapter

CHEL: Concise Cambridge History of English Literature (1970)

CL: Curiosities of Literature, by Isaac Disraeli (various eds. as indicated)

Col. U. P.: Columbia University Press

CS: Chapter of Suggestions (in Brevities)

DAB: Dictionary of American Biography

DA: Dictionary of Americanisms, M. M. Mathews, ed. (1951)

DG: Doings of Gotham by ... Poe, J. E. Spannuth and T. O. Mabbott, eds.

DN: same as PD , q.v.

DNB: Dictionary of National Biography

DP: Discoveries in Poe (Pollin)

ed.: editor, edition

Ed. Rev.: Edinburgh Review

En. Brit. or Ency. Brit. : Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed., 1911, unless specified)

ESQ: Emerson Society Quarterly

FS: Fifty Suggestions (in Brevities)

Godey’s [Lady’s Book]

Graham’s [Magazine]

H: Harrison, James A., ed., The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe (1902), 17 vols.

Imaginary Voyages: Poe’s longest narratives, including Pym, B. R. Pollin, ed., vol. I, Collected Writings (1981)

JEGP: Journal of English and Germanic Philology

L.: London

LC: Library of Congress

Levine, S. and S.: The Short Fiction of ... Poe (1976)

Letters: see Ostrom

LHE: Literary History of England, A. C. Baugh, ed. (2nd ed., 1967)

LST: Literary Small Talk (in Brevities)

M (MM plural): Marginalia article(s) (in Brevities)

Miss Q , also MQ : Mississippi Quarterly

MLN: Modern Language Notes

Moldenhauer, Catalog: Joseph Moldenhauer, ed., Descriptive Catalog of ... Poe Manuscripts (1973)

n: note

NAR: North American Review

NCF: Nineteenth-Century Fiction

no.: number

NYPL: New York Public Library

OCAL: Oxford Companion to American Literature (1941)

OCD: Oxford Classical Dictionary (2nd ed., 1970)

OED: Oxford English Dictionary, reissue of New English Dictionary of Historical Principles (1884-1928; new ed., 1933)

Ostrom: Letters of ... Poe, J. W. Ostrom, ed. (1948, rep. 1966) para. (paras.): paragraph(s)

PCW: Poe, Creator of Words, B. R. Pollin, ed. (rev. and augmented ed., 1980) [page lx:]

PD: for “Poe Dictionary” or Dictionary of Names and Titles in Poe’s Collected Works, B. R. Pollin, ed. (1968); also DN (Dictionary of Names)

Pin: Pinakidia (in Brevities)

PMLA: Publications of the Modern Language Association (specifically the journal)

PN: Poe Newsletter (later Poe Studies)

Poems: Collected Works of ... Poe, vol. I, T. O. Mabbott, ed. (Harvard U. P., 1969)

Politian: annotated ed. of Poe’s play, T. O. Mabbott, ed. (Menasha, Wisc. 1923)

PPA: Poets and Poetry of America, R. W. Griswold, ed. (1842)

PS: Poe Studies

Quinn: Poe. A Critical Biography by A. H. Quinn (1941)

ref(s).: reference(s)

rep.: reprint (ed.)

rev(s).: review(s) or reviewed

SAF: Studies in American Fiction

SAR: Studies in the American Renaissance (plus the year)

SLM: Southern Literary Messenger

SM: Supplementary Marginalia (in Brevities)

SP: Supplementary Pinakidia (in Brevities)

Spannuth: Doings of Gotham (see DG)

TOM: Thomas Ollive Mabbott, cited chiefly for Collected Works of ... Poe (Harvard U. P., 1978), vols. II and III, paged continuously, Tales and Sketches

tr.: translated or translation

TSLL: Texas Studies in Literature and Language

U. P.: University Press (appended)

uncol.: uncollected

Universal Erudition: Les Premiers Traits de l‘erudition universelle (Jacob Bielfeld)

vol.: volume







[S:0 - BRP2B, 1985] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions - The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe (B. R. Pollin) (Special Elements and Abbreviations)