The Works of the Edgar Allan Poe (Stoddard Edition)


(Under Construction)

Richard Henry Stoddard (1825-1903) was a minor poet, achieving notable success in his own day, but now largely forgotten except by his connection with Poe. Although it is a convenient way to refer to this set, it is a little misleading to designate it as the “Stoddard” edition. Previous editors, Griswold and Ingram, had both devoted considerable editorial effort to their sets of Poe’s works, while Stoddard chiefly relied on these earlier sets and added only a memoir. Stoddard had been on close personal terms with John R. Thompson, who had been the editor of the Southern Literary Messenger during Poe’s final years. (When Thompson died in April 1873, Stoddard served as his literary executor.)

The Works of the Edgar Allan Poe (The Stoddard Edition, 6 vols.) (1884)

  • Volume I: The Genius of Poe; Life of Poe; Poetic Principle; Rationale of Verse; and Poems     (also includes the introductory essays by J. R. Lowell and N. P. Willis, as well as Poe’s “Cryptography”; “Pinakidia”; “Some Secrets of the Magazine Prison-House”; “Anastatic Printing”; and “Fifty Suggestions”)
  • Volume II: Tales   (“Hans Pfaall,” etc., through “The Tell-Tale Heart”) 
  • Volume III: Tales   (“The Domain of Arnheim,” etc., through “Narrative of A. Gordon Pym”)
  • Volume IV: Tales   (“The System of Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether,” etc., through “Some Words with a Mummy.” Also includes Review of Stephen’s “Arabia Petraea”; “Magazine-Writing — Peter Snook”; Wilmer’s “The Quacks of Helicon — A Satire”; and Irving’s “Astoria”)
  • Volume V: Eureka, Marginalia, A Chapter on Autographs, and Literati   (George Bush through Mary E. Hewitt)  (also includes “Philosophy of Composition.” “A Chapter on Autographs” includes the material from Graham’s Magazine, with the two installments and the “Appendix of Autographs”)
  • Volume VI: Literati   (Richard Adams Locke through Charles Dickens)  (also includes “Letter to B—”)

The Works of the Edgar Allan Poe (The Stoddard Edition, 8-vols.) (1884)

  • Volume I: Life of Poe; Poetic Principle; Rationale of Verse; and Poems   (also includes the introductory essays by J. R. Lowell and N. P. Willis) (drops the brief introductory note on “The Genuis of Poe” and the five items which follow the poems are moved to another volume)  (dated April 21, 1884)
  • Volume II: Tales   (“Hans Pfaall.” etc., through “The Black Cat”) (dated May 23, 1884)
  • Volume III:  Tales   (“The Fall of the House of Usher,” etc., through “Lionizing”)  (dated June 10, 1884)
  • Volume IV: Tales   (“Narrative of A. Gordon Pym,” etc., through “Mellonta Tauta”)  (dated July 3, 1884)
  • Volume V: Tales    (“Loss of Breath,” etc., through “Some Words with a Mummy.” Also includes Review of Stephen’s “Arabia Petraea”; “Magazine-Writing — Peter Snook”; Wilmer’s “The Quacks of Helicon — A Satire”; and Irving’s “Astoria”) (dated July 21, 1884)
  • Volume VI: Eureka, Marginalia, and A Chapter on Autographs   (also includes “Philosophy of Composition.” “A Chapter on Autographs” includes the material from Graham’s Magazine, with the two installments and the “Appendix of Autographs”) (dated August 9, 1884)
  • Volume VII: Literati    (George Bush through “Mr. Griswold and the Poets”) (dated September 3, 1884)
  • Volume VIII: Literati   (“Mr. Longfellow and Other Plagiarists” through Charles Dickens, plus Letter to B—, Cryptography, Pinakidia, Some Secrets of the Magazine Prison-House, Anastatic Printing, and Fifty Suggestions)  (dated September 15, 1884)

The contents of the two sets are essentially identical, with the 6 volume set being printed on thinner paper and having material slightly rearranged to fit in the smaller number of volumes. The 8-volume set is called “The Amontillado Edition” and is published by G. P. Putnam and A. C. Armstrong. It is limited to 315 copies, and dated April 21 - September 15, 1884.

Stoddard’s memoir of Poe took the opposite route of Ingram’s. Ingram wrote his for the collected edtion of Poe’s works (1874-1875), and later adapted it for use in various sets of Poe’s poetry. Stoddard’s memoir of Poe first appeared in the 1875 edition of Poe’s poetry, published by W. J. Widdleton, and then in The Select Works of Edgar Allan Poe: Poetry and Prose, issued by the same publisher in 1880. Even before 1875, Stoddard had already written several generally unfavorable articles about Poe.

Separate printings of The Select Works:

  • W. J. Widdleton
    • 1880 - The Select Works of Edgar Allan Poe, Poetical and Prose  (a one-volume edition, with Stoddard’s memoir, called the Household Edition.)  (Widdleton had previously issued a one-volume selection of Poe’s prose and poetry in 1876, with a translation of Baudelaire’s memoir of Poe.)
  • A. C. Armstrong & Sons
    • 1884-1886 - reprint (the title page bears no date, but it must date after Armstrong acquired the copyrights from Widdleton in 1884 and is probably about the time that Armstrong issued other reprints from the Widdleton catalog of Poe editions. It is also called the Household Edition.)
    • 1887 - reprint (Household edition, dated on the title page)
    • 1896 - reprint

Separate printings of The Prose Tales:

  • A. C. Armstrong & Sons
    • 1889 - The Prose Tales, 3 volumes  (Previously, Armstrong issued reprints of the Widdleton set, in 2 volumes. Even the binding was identical to that used by Widdleton, with the only notable difference being the name of the publisher at the base of the spine. Now, Armstrong reformatted the set using pages from its own collection of Poe’s works and rearranged to form 3 volumes. Some booksellers note this as being the 6th printing, presumably based on the list of copyrights. Although the Armstrong copyright date is 1884, this 1889 set of the Prose Tales is essentially a new edition and could be granted its own copyright date.)
    • 1893 - The Prose Tales, 3 volumes (reprint in 1889 format)


Bibliographic Data:

8vo (8 1/4 in x 5 1/2 in). The set includes 44 illustrations, featuring six folding facsimiles of letters and manuscripts.


A Chronology of Printings and Reprintings:

A Chronology of Printings and Reprintings:

  • W. J. Widdleton
    • 1875 - Poems (first printing of Stoddard’s Memoir of Poe) (The copyright states 1874)
    • 1880 - Select Works of Edgar Allan Poe  (Household Edition)
  • A. C. Armstrong
    • 1884 - The Works of Edgar Allan Poe (6 vols.)
    • 1896 - Select Works of Edgar Allan Poe  (Household Edition)
  • G. P. Putnam and A. C. Armstrong
    • 1884 - The Works of Edgar Allan Poe (8 vols.)  (contents are essentially identical to the 6 volume set, slightly rearranged. Called the “Amontillado” edition.)
  • George Routledge (London)
    • 1875 - Poems (with Stoddard’s Memoir of Poe) (No copyright stated 1874, and presumably reprinted in cooperation with Widdleton.)
    • 1893 - Poems of Edgar Allan Poe (Complete)   (with Stoddard’s memoir)
    • 1896 - The Works of Edgar Allan Poe (6 vols)  (Fordham Edition, reprint of Armstrong set)


Census of Copies:

There are so many surviving copies of these volumes that a listing is impractical and unnecessary.



  • American Art Association Auction Catalogue, The Stephen H. Wakeman Collection of Books of Nineteenth Century American Writers, April 1924 (items 958 and 959).
  • Bayless, Joy, Rufus Wilmot Griswold: Poe’s Literary Executor, Nashville, Tennesee: Vanderbilt University Press, 1943. (The edition of Poe’s works is chiefly discussed in Chapter VIII: “Liteary Executor of Edgar Allan Poe,” pp. 161-200.)
  • Blanck, Jacob, “Edgar Allan Poe,” Bibliography of American Literature; volume 7: James Kirke Paulding to Frank Richard Stockton, New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1983. (Volume 7 is edited and completed by Virginia L. Smyers and Michael Winship. For Griswold’s editions, see items 16158- 16161, pp. 123-125.)
  • Campbell, Killis, “The Poe-Griswold Controversy,” The Mind of Poe and Other Studies, Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1933, pp. 63-98. (This article originally appeared in PMLA, XXXIV, Sept. 1919, pp. 436-464.)
  • Derby, James Cephas, Fifty Years Among Authors, Books, and Publishers, New York: G. W. Carleton & Co., 1884 (reprinted in 1885 and 1886).
  • Gimbel, Colonel Richard, “Quoth the Raven: An Exhibition of the Work of Edgar Allan Poe,” The Yale University Library Gazette, vol. 33, No. 4, Paril 1959, pp. 138-189. (The contract between Mrs. Clemm and Griswold is item 123, on pages 180-181. It is reproduced in facsimile facing page 185. Other relevant items are 125, 126-127, 128, 131 and 133.)
  • Griswold, Rufus Wilmot, ed., The Works of the Late Edgar Allan Poe, New York: J. S. Redfield, 4 vols, 1850-1856.
  • Harrison, James A., “Editor’s Preface,” in The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe, New York: T. Y. Crowell, 1902. (vol. I, pp. vii-xx. The preface is dated “March 25, 1902.”) (Volume XVII contains letters by and about Poe. It was reprinted as volume II of The Life and Letters of Edgar Allan Poe, New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1903.)
  • Hatvary, George Egon, “The Whereabouts of Poe’s ‘Fifty Suggestions’,” Poe Studies, IV, No. 2, December 1971, p. 47.
  • Heartman, Charles F and James R. Canny, A Bibliography of First Printings of the Writings of Edgar Allan Poe, Hattiesburg, Mississippi, 1943, pp. 129-133. (Reprinted, Millwood, New York: Kraus Reprint Co., 1977.)
  • O’Neill, Edward H., “The Poe-Griswold-Harrison Texts of the ‘Marginalia’,” American Literature, XV, November 1943, pp. 238-250.
  • Parke-Bernet Galleries, Inc. Auction Catalogue, The Frank J. Hogan Library: Part One - American Authors, First Editions, Autograph Letters, Manuscripts, January 23 and 24, 1945 (items 584 and 585). (The only significant information here is the description of item 584, which includes the volume with N. P. Willis’ autographs.)
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, volume I: Poems (1969); volumes II & III: Tales and Sketches (1978), Cambridge, Massachusetts: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
  • Miller, John Carl, Building Poe Biography, Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1977.
  • Miller, John Carl, Poe’s Helen Remembers,
  • Moldenhauer, Joseph J., “Mabbott’s Poe and the Question of Copy-Texts,” Poe Studies, XI, no. 2, December 1978, pp. 41-46. (Moldenhauer questions T. O. Mabbott’s reliance on Griswold’s versions of Poe’s works as his chief source for a definitive text.)
  • Pollin, Burton R., “Introduction: Marginalia,” The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe; volume 2: The Brevities, New York: Gordian Press, 1985, pp. xv-xxii.
  • Pollin, Burton R., “The Living Writers of America:  A Manuscript by Edgar Allan Poe,” Studies in the American Renaissance 1991, Charlottesville, Virginia: The University Press of Virginia, 1991, pp. 151-211.
  • Pollin, Burton R., “A Comprehensive Bibliography of Editions and Translations of Arthur Gordon Pym,”  ATQ (American Transcendental Quarterly), Winter 1978, pp. 93- 110. (Pollin lists several printings of the Griswold edition on page 106, items 2 and 4.)
  • Quinn, Arthur Hobson, Edgar Allan Poe: A Critical Biography, New York: D. Appleton-Century Company, 1941.
  • Thompson, John Ruben, The Genius and Character of Edgar Allan Poe, privately printed, 1929. (Edited and arranged by James H. Whitty and James H. Rindfleisch.)
  • Southeby Auction Catalogue, The Library of H. Bradley Martin: Highly Important American and Children’s Literature, New York, January 30 and 31, 1990, item 2213.
  • Woodberry, George E. (assigned as writer of this anonymous review by Killis Campbell), The Nation, December 4, 1902, p. 445-447.
  • Woodberry, George E. and Edmund Clarence Stedman, “General Preface,” The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, Chicago: Stone and Kimball, 1894-1895 (reprinted by New York: The Colonial Company, 1903 and Charles Scribners’s Sons, 1920).



[S:0 - JAS] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Editions - Works of Edgar Allan Poe (Stoddard)