Text: Burton R. Pollin, “Introduction for Supplementary Marginalia,” The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe — Vol. II: The Brevities (1985), pp. xlviii- (This material is protected by copyright)


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


[page xlviii, continued:]

MARGINALIA — TOPICS

[Column I = the number in The Brevities; II, in 1850 edition]

I II

1 — Velschius’ work on Persian dates jestingly mentioned

2 — Shelley and R. Montgomery humorously compared

3 — Bishop Butler on mass lunacy

4 — Poe and Livy on Hannibal’s Italian route

5 — Horace Smith: his looks and books

6 — epigrams and fencing-foils: both pointed

7 — Dante’s Purgatory: not the ultimate place

8 — why music affects us to tears

9 — Voltaire on one God

10 — Man, innately rational, is civilized in the natural state.

11 — literature: largely comprised of the works of little people

12 — Ainsworth: his nonsensical Latin and Greek sprinklings

13 — one of Plutarch’s Lives humorously noted

14 — Mary Magdalen slander refuted

15 — hyperism in German titles and Olympic games prizes

16 — music as the science of sound is not grasped by Chorley and musicians

17 — J. Grant: trivial in his facts

18 — adaptation and plot construction: human and divine forms contrasted

19 — J. Montgomery on Oriental tales quoted and derided

20 — the tragic power of Dickens, too often ignored

21 — Duncan’s theological work — naive in use of “prophecy”

22 — mocking allusions to scientific titles and theories

23 — Women must be criticized even more gently than men.

24 — Tom Paine’s work — clever and impudent

25 — Germans currently addicted to history — writing

26 — High birth is undervalued by democrats.

27 — Speed-writing, better for comprehension, eventually may be widely taught.

28 — Necessity produces inventions.

29 — Gibbon’s style condemned for its three principles

30 — the destructive bigotry of Bristed (?)

31 — Truth, though casually spoken, is often neglected in history, where expected.

32 — analogy given between effect on body of light and sound

33 — Books should begin well.

34 — handwriting as indicator of character and mental habits

35 — plagiarism by literary men scorned

36 — An incomplete Hebrew biblical text, emended, solves a crux.

37 — Brougham’s criticism of J. Randolph ill-taken

38 — Lardner’s borrowed lore on astronomical magnitudes extremely faulty

39 — A book, title given, proves the strangeness of truth.

40 — An inconsiderable poem yields worthy passages.

41 — the force of assonance, too often overlooked, shown in Comas

42 — Moore’s poetical writing praised with reservations

43 — Poe deprecates the writer’s faithful depiction of ugliness.

44 214 Tennyson praised for truly poetic effect [page xlix:]

45 71 Writers of genius must choose their own subjects.

46 70 L. Sterne (sic) and C. Colton derive their ideas from precursors.

47 67 Philologists choose wit over truth for derivations.

48 57 odors: effect differs from other senses

49 58 Buwer’s debt in Last Days to Arnay unacknowledged

50 82 La Harpe justly praises Racine’s skill.

51 99 Volney’s evaluation of life at its end

52 74 women novelists, exemplified by Lady Fullerton’s new novel unusually competent for a woman

53 75 polytheism, both modern and ancient, confused even about deities’ gender

54 61 striking optic effects in a German Macbeth

55 128 Moses’ use of the singular and plural of Eloah

56 228 Novels exert beneficial, even moral effects through imitation.

57 140 ancient view on soul’s equine trip to heaven

58 134 M. Masson’s novel a vile work

59 127 Books can intentionally “suggest” by hints and omissions.

60 170 Sallust quoted on kingship

61 — Macaulay corrected on first periodical moral essay

62 38 Solomon as author of the Iliad

63 112 Mill’s and Bentham’s a priori arguments on government are fallacious.

64 114 Satyre Ménippée similar to Butler’s Hudibras

65 113 Flaminius’ quoted Latin shows a concord of sound and sense.

66 114 similarities between Gould’s and Howitt’s verses

67 115 C. Webbe’s Lamb-like essays tiresomely mannered

68 116 Austin’s Essay on a Future State aptly avoids rational arguments.

69 119 humorous physiognomical definition of gentleman

70 118 Some minds must know and show how things are done.

71 120 Poe laughs at Jonah in German hexameters.

72 130 the multilanguage, imitative origins of the British Spy

73 48 Bulwer’s style in Night and Morning too involute

74 45 Simms’ writings quoted for inaccurate style

75 40 Cowley’s Davideis — a witticism

76 47 Poe finds error in an almost perfect Camöens (sic) book.

77 48 Bulwer’s sentimental idea of the smiling dead

78 49 Tieck surpassed Brougham in misapplying quotations.

79 — Hawthorne: a true genius but desperate mannerist and a borrower

80 50 Dickens’ and Buwer’s petty grammatical errors

81 51 The French infuse Gallic rhythm into English verse.

82 66 a complex plot without interdependence cited

83 53 J. Montgomery’s exaggerated style deprecated

84 54 Baden’s Danish imitations of classical metres tolerable

85 52 Malibran’s well — deserved acclaim

86 126 Certain Voltaire volumes deserve burning.

87 100 pun on poor reasoning

88 108 early dates of three English magazines traced

89 102 comment on magazine article plagiarisms

90 103 comment on wrong attributions of Latin tags

91 — “Jehovah” not a Hebrew word

92 101 Macaulay overrates Tickell, ignoring his borrowings from Boileau.

93 104 humorous comment on decline of reputation

94 107 humorous comment on reaching the end

95 105 Curran’s overpowering style [page l:]

96 123 English magazine’s measured praise of W. Godwin cited

97 109 Rhododaphne quoted for musicality

98 106 Fouqué’s Undine: a beautiful book with a hidden theme about second marriage

99 160 E. Wilkinson’s Revolutionary War memories derided

100 165 the plagiarism of Mathias’ Pursuits by the Monthly Register

101 151 pun on Griswold’s hard head

102 162 etymology of “high — binder” traced

103 163 “musquitoes” as frustrating American genius

104 — A. Welby’s poetry quoted and analyzed as passionate, but unoriginal

105 196 Adam called “first scientist” on Vatican portrait

106 171 Simms’ “Indian Serenade” quoted as meritorious

107 173 conundrum: a fable of the fox

108 — The mob’s credulity and the philosopher’s skepticism of yesteryear now are reversed.

109 164 Coleridge’s Table Talk is really Table Preachings.

110 — Bulwer, talented and trained, could never produce the masterpiece of the genius Dickens.

111 a vulgarism common to both Latin and Smollett

112 simple ancient Greek oratory inferior to today’s

113 erroneous authorship for novel Miserrimus given

114 T. C. Grattan, circumlocutory and wordy, badly depicted in a print

115 biblical lore on impenetrable Edom contrasted with Keith’s views on prophecy

116 H. W. Herbert, better in his verses than his wordy strained prose

117 Bulwer’s style excessively involute

118 Men of genius need constructiveness and energy or industry for productions.

119 Originality, formerly decried in America, alienates the enviously mediocre.

120 Chinese and European drama compared for conventions

121 “Fortune,” basic to Greek drama, is unmentioned in Iliad.

122 Lowell’s book errs — that a knowing critic could not create.

123 Griswold’s book makes him into Anacharsis Clootz.

124 Mill’s “demonstrated propositions” derogated

125 a proverb on thick skulls

126 postulate: our chance of afterlife indicated by the quality of our slumber or swoons

127 Pythagoras’ definition of beauty hinted in U.S. motto

128 a geographic book, full of Germanic statistics

129 — Mancur’s novel — tediously lengthy

130 204 Despite Swedenborgians’ belief, Poe labels “Mesmeric Revelation” fictitious.

131 apparent decline of drama due to imitative element

132 J. Montgomery unselfconsciously deprecates “Ossian.”

133 English attempts at Greek hexameters (Sidney’s) absurd, unlike Poe’s sample

134 Personification in Longfellow’s “Proem” is faulty.

135 words considered as murderous things

136 reality defined in relation to real estate

137 Voltaire’s preface to Brutus cited

138 Longfellow’s mosaic of plagiarisms like Tasso’s

139A eleven pairs of verse plagiarized in famous writers paralleled

139B The sensitive poet assimilates and imitates others’ excellent passages. [page li:]

139C 202 Lack of international copyright crushes literary genius and promotes insipid productions.

140 208 Longfellow’s “Pröem” is slipshod in rhythm and thought, but all consistent.

141 need for honest, censorious critics with standards

142 Scots as God’s tongue humorously proposed

143 Concise magazine articles indicate increase in direct, rapid thought.

144 joke on a wit’s function

145 allegorical fable applied to inept critics

146 Hudson’s lectures pointlessly employ antithesis.

147 10 Like music, poetic elements rely on mathematical equality and unexpectedness.

148 18 popular witticism about Louis XV’s equestrian statue

149 17 Puckle quoted as speaking of the dead

150 16 Fancies can be concretized by the power of words.

151 3 Tertullian paradox wrongly attributed to Browne by Hudson

152 22 German words for poetry agree with Bielfeld’s French definition.

153 6 Plutarch thinks senseless an epigram on Diana.

154 23 In Thomas Hague are combined an astrological quack and an ass.

155 — The ideas of man and mankind are cyclical.

156 — Poe agrees with Gosselin on Hanno’s furthest landing.

157 — medicine’s drugging system as similar to Christian penance

158 — H. Cary, American poet, as a good essayist

159 121 Voltaire quoted on British political prejudices

160 122 plagiarism of T. Hood by Aldrich

161 — Bush’s Anastasis on rebirth: logical treatise on wild premises

162 — Gillespie’s Rome: an entertaining set of impressions

163 125 Johnson quoted on personal abuse

164 95 German apothegm on art disputed

165 — the rant and cant of Carlyle in Hero-Worship

166 — Cheever’s anthology of poetry commonplace

167 124 Street’s descriptive poetry lacks spirit.

168 — Poe refutes the plagiarism charges against the learned, accurate classicist Anthon.

169 73 W. W. Lord’s poems are largely plagiarisms.

170 — Lady Morgan’s faulty style misleads a translator.

171 — an obvious truth, often ignored: drama has not declined, but advanced little

172 — Fourierite newspaper derided for its name and readership

173 — W. G. Simms’ Areytos quoted and praised

174 — German taste morbid in admiring Werter

175 — Cranch’s poetry: transcendental, but in one quoted example artistic though blemished

176 110 Sue’s Mysteries of Paris — book and translation imperfect

177 194 Bulwer’s Lady of Lyons — a successful but defective drama

178 182 I. Disraeli too concerned with subject to tighten style

179 197 Poetry analysis based on mathematical quantity would improve even masterpieces.

180 200 Newnham’s book on mesmerism fallacious in premises, not in its conclusion

181 20 Fouqué’s Thiodulf represents simple — minded, unsettled German taste and criticism.

182 25 magazine literature suited for the rush of our day

183 24 Roger Bacon anticipated J.Espy’s weather theory. [page lii:]

184 129 America needs a new, distinctive, euphonious name, such as Appalachia.

185 133 courage needed to admit cowardice

186 132 Greek plays, such as Antigone, show inexperience, simplicity, unlike sculpture.

187 69 Genius vacillates between ambition to excel and inadequate effort through scorn or indifference.

188 56 R. W. Emerson — an imitator of Carlyle, like Sallust and Aruntius

189 2 Genius appears in deepest despair just before success.

190 42 Genius requires moral matter in motion.

191 39 Poe corrects Bristed on the mechanics of verse, the same in all tongues.

192 43 characteristics of the conversation of genius

193 46 Coleridge’s astronomical slip

194 41 No man dares to write and publish his complete confession of self.

195 144 misinformation about rhetorician’s rules in Hudibras

196 145 A new Baconian idol is needed for reasoning in a circle, about reason itself.

197 5 the need for a treatise on punctuation — meanwhile, the dash discussed

198 55 plagiarism of Charming’s article by New Monthly Magazine proved by Poe

199 4 Profound thoughts on God and the soul resemble the merely sentimental.

200 1 Poe’s mesmeric tales deemed nonfiction by British journals mocked in turn by Poe

201 — E. Barrett’s Drama of Exile has a vigorous passage — cited.

202 — Effective song lyrics require the indefinitiveness of music — basic to such popular verses as those of G. P. Morris.

203 62 T. C. Grattan’s book circles around its subject, like a gossip.

204 68 plagiarism of Felicia Hemans’ “Hymn” by R. W. Dodson

205 — Osborn’s Confessions of a Poet powerful without roughness

206 65 B. Tucker’s noble novel cannot expect adequate recognition in the prejudiced North American Review.

207 63 anecdote about a flashily learned youth, exposed through his cribbed sources

208 64 plagiarism by G. Hill of Southerner E. C. Pinkney’s “Health”

209 — Mrs. Osgood’s poetry remarkable for its grace

210 59 T. B. Read, a true but faulty poet, copies the copyist Longfellow.

211 60 Poe would be insulted, if evaluated by the North American Review.

212 — Bayard Taylor’s skilful, imaginative poetry quoted and defended

213 135 Shelley, sincere and original, led to the acme — Tennyson.

214 — W. W. Lord’s two plagiarisms from Poe

215 — evil in man illogically excused in L. Osborn’s Alla-Ad-Deep

216 138 John Neal: a genius without constructive sense

217 136 The critic and the criticized properly should be named in magazine reviewing.

218 28 Grammatical inversion, an unpardonable poetic license, enfeebles poetry.

219 29 epigram — doggerel on Poe’s and Green’s criticism of Coxe’s Saul

220 31 Imagination makes new compounds of beauty and deformity.

221 34 Ward’s hyperbole on Buwer’s genius denied — mere talent and energy

222 36 E. Barrett quoted for quaintness and affection [page liii:]

223 — quip on brainless deviltry

224 — To a genius “the difficult” is “the impossible.”

225 — Only St. Francis could uplift modern men.

226 27 The mob can be led by its imagination.

227 84 S. Butler’s definition of a rabble suits the U. S. Congress.

228 97 Americans worship the dollar — as one-tenth eagle.

229 89 Aspiring reformers usually fall below ordinary men.

230 94 a sharp eye needed to see man as dignified

231 — In a future existence the present will seem a dream.

232 — a distinction made between a people and a mob

233 96 Expectations alter behavior of scoundrels and gentlemen.

234 87 moral courage a misnomer

235 — villainy a surer path to worldly success than virtue

236 85 A snobbish writer incorrectly capitalizes king and monarch.

237 — Complete knowledge of man’s heart leads to despair.

238 — genius and moral nobility closely related

239 90 “Music of the spheres” and “mosaic” properly mean proportion or harmony — to Plato and us.

240 98 L. G. Clark: unremarkable and dull

241 91 Derogation of Van Buren shows changing word meaning.

242 — a true system of philosophy impossible

243 86 Mere imitation of nature is not art.

244 93 Anacreon is extant only for academic reasons.

245 92 Hegel’s view: philosophy’s uselessness makes it estimable

246 88 Beranger cited for man’s optimism and ingenuity

247 83 The highly gifted must be misunderstood and mistreated by the commonalty.

248 26 The Muses, when invoked, forsake the poem.

249 15 The German for “sky-rocket” fits Boston criticism.

250 19 disagreement on the rightness of popular taste

251 — the hellishness of our world to the eye of reason

252 21 vengeance seen as justice, even by men of pride and conscience

253 14 Latin pun on quail

254 13 the error of being a citizen only of the world, not of the universe

255 12 The motto of the bell, Great Tom, suits Carlyle-ists.

256 11 word play on the iron or gold points of Paulus Jovius’ pen

257 — pun on the name of Preserved Fish

258 — a speaker’s eloquence deprecated by a Cicero witticism

259 — pun on H. Walpole’s concept of grace

260 7 the number of adherents no criterion of a religion or philosophy

261 — pun on trees and “tres” (Latin) for Gothic church arches

262 8 F. Bacon’s ameliorative reform contrasted with reformers’ oppositionism

263 9 Feelings about charity at death argue for Christianity.

264 79 Latin pun on Demosthenes

265 80 travellers’ accounts of celebrities mostly lies

266 72 Analytic reflection on the method of art distracts from its major purpose.

267 78 Modern mass reform and anti — pleasure laws are related.

268 81 Like Chinese, romance — writers should begin books at the end.

269 77 Mathews’ book will be unread.

270 32 The printing error in Mathews’ book: its being published

271 37 Mozart’s final awareness of music’s capacity; our hope: the Spasmodists’ awareness of its incapacity [page liv:]

272 — Magazine poets adopt Ferrar’s attempted “perpetual chant.”

273 35 apt construction more important and obvious in tales than in novels

274 33 Dupin’s commonly understood language the opposite of Bostonian esoteric utterance

275 30 a Latin joke on the people’s voice

276 149 plain — speaking about American literature needed

277 146 Montaigne’s need to think before writing, despite his quip

278 178 fable of Reynard the fox used to condemn Mathews’ play

279 148 American critics should know their own language.

280 44 Few of our artists are too natural.

281 131 Mathews’ desire for critical notice — afterwards resented

282 137 Attacking great men magnifies the little.

283 143 The increasing bluestockings need to be reduced through deft criticism.

284 147 Opera choruses suggest Sophocles’ turkey chorus.

285 152 Chinese and Greeks locate soul in stomach or chest.

286 — Mathews’ literary failures seem intentional.

287 156 Lawson’s play deprecated via Macbeth and an opera

288 76 Silk Buckingham’s travelogues mocked

289 76 Carlyle’s next book predicted slightingly

290 — Wm. Wallace’s poetry quoted with praise

291 177 The puns in T. Hood’s fantastic, original works represent his despondency.

 


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Notes:

None.


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞

[S:0 - BRP2B, 1985] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions - The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe (B. R. Pollin) (Introduction for Supplementary Marginalia)