Text: Burton R. Pollin, “June 1835 (Notes),” The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe — Vol. V: SLM (1997), pp. 22-24 (This material is protected by copyright)


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[page 22:]

Notes [[for June 1835]]

[column 1:]

June 1835 - 1 Title: [Henry T. Tuckerman]. The Italian Sketch Book. Philadelphia: Key and Biddle,1835. SLM text: p. 594. Tuckerman was a critic and popular travel writer in the vein of Washington Irving. It is possible that Poe also reviewed this volume in the Baltimore American of June 16. (T. O. Mabbott, “A Few Notes on Poe,” Modern Language Notes 35 [1920]: 374 n. 10). Poe’s subsequent and consistent distaste for all the writings of Tuckerman, especially after his rejection of “The Tell-Tale Heart” in 1842, appears in numerous articles and passages (see Pollin 4: 171 n. for 3: 218/1617; Mabbott 1: 397 and 3: 791, 1110-1111 n. 2).

June 1835 - 2 Title: [Henry Wadsworth Longfellow]. Outre-Mer; A Pilgrimage Beyond the Sea. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1835. SLM text: p. 594. Longfellow had spent the years 1826-29 in Europe in order to gain proficiency in Spanish, French, Italian, and German for a professorship in modern languages at Bowdoin College, his alma mater. Later, as a Harvard professor in the same field, he made other trips to Britain and the Continent. Poe several times mentions OutreMer in later reviews. His tone here is entirely amiable; it altered drastically when he came to review Longfellow’s prose romance Hyperion in Burton’s (October 1839). From this review forward he continued to attack the popular bard in reviews and lectures, even charging plagiarism. For details of the “little Longfellow war” in the Broadway Journal in 1845 see Pollin 4, passim. Full discussions are found in Sidney P. Moss, Poe’s Literary Battles (Durham, N.C., 1963) and Pollin, “Poe and Longfellow,” Mississippi Quarterly 37 (1984): 475-82.

* Hollandin / Holland in

June 1835 - 3 Title: J[eremiah]. N. Reynolds. Voyage of the United States Frigate [column 2:] Potomac. . . . New York: Harper & Brothers, 1835. SLM text: pp. 594-95. Poe’s references to Jeremiah N. Reynolds (1799?1858) span the period from this first review until well into the 1840s. His initial interest may well have been stimulated by T. W. White, whose acquaintanceship with Reynolds began in the late 1820s. (See Poe Log, pp. 239-40 and the discussion below under January 1837 - 4.) As Poe notes, Reynolds had been known to the public as an associate of John Cleves Symmes, author of the theory that the earth was formed of concentric spheres with open entrances at the poles. After a lecture tour through a number of states on behalf of the theory, Reynolds broke with Symmes in 1826, though he continued to argue that the poles were surrounded by rims of ice and that beyond them the sea was warmer and open to navigation. Late in the 1820s Reynolds began lobbying for a national expedition to the South Seas and Antarctic, urging both the commercial and scientific benefit to be gained for the U. S. Following the failure of Congress to act upon a bill of authorization in 1828, he went on an expedition to waters around the tip of South America; it failed and Reynolds remained a resident and explorer of Chile for the next few years. It was in Valparaiso in October 1832 that he joined the frigate Potomac, then under Commander John Downes. As secretary to Downes and official historiographer of the ship’s long voyage, Reynolds put together an account from ship’s records and from the crew’s reminiscences, particularly-as Poe here mentions-the punitive expedition along the coast of Sumatra. (As other voyage narratives of the period record, a number of U. S. vessels had been victims of pirates or of hostile indigenous peoples during cruises in Southern waters.)

Though this review calls Symmes’s “holes-at-the-poles” an “indefensible subject,” [page 23:] Poe had made use of it in three stories: “MS. Found in a Bottle” (see Mabbott 2: 131-32; 148; 288); “Hans Phaall,” which appeared in this same issue of the SLM (see Pollin 1: 483); and The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym (see Pollin 1: 26; 229; 356). Poe also drew directly on Reynolds’s Voyage in Pym (see Pollin 1: 291-92).

Poe’s authorship of this review is further confirmed by his referring to Reynolds as “Mr. R.” both here and in two further reviews of his works. (See notes to December 1835 - 7 and January 1837 - 4 ) Moreover, in his spoof, “Autography” (SLM, February 1836, p. 211), Poe shows awareness of the popularity of the Voyage. Here, over the reproduced signature of Reynolds (likely taken from correspondence in the SLM office), is this purported letter: “I thank you for the hints you have been so kind as to give me in relation to my next edition of the ‘Voyage,’ but as that edition has already gone to press, it will be impossible to avail myself of your attention until the sixth impression.” In fact, the book had gone through four impressions in as many months after publication. (Aubrey Starke, “Poe’s Friend Reynolds,” American Literature 11 [1939]: 152-159.) Further personal information on Reynolds is in Robert Almy, “J. N. Reynolds: A Brief Biography with Particular Reference to Poe and Symmes,” Colophon n.s. 2 (1937): 227-45.

For a continuation of the discussion of Reynolds in the SLM, see the notes for the items December 1835 - 7, August 1836 - 12 and January 1837 - 4. This last note contains information on Poe and Reynolds beyond the period of Poe’s association with the SLM.

June 1835 - 4 Title: Thomas Moore. The History of Ireland. Vol. 1. Philadelphia: Carey, Lea and Blanchard, 1835. SLM text: p. 595. Moore was particularly popular in the South for his Irish Melodies, as numerous verses printed in the SLM attest. He was also a strong influence on Poe’s own poetry, and this review is basically a set of references to Moore’s [column 2:] works to date. In order, they are:

“The bard of Paradise and the Peri”: “Paradise and the Peri” is a section of Lalla Rookh (1817).

“Captain Rock and Fitzgerald”: Memoirs of Captain Rock, the Celebrated Irish Chieftain (1824); Life of Lord Edward Fitzgerald (1832).

“The Epicurean”: The Epicurean: A Tale (1827). The hero of this prose romance is a Greek Epicurean of the Third Century A.D. who “anomalously” is converted to Christianity. For this novel in Poe’s poetry and “Shadow” see Pollin, “. . . More of Thomas Moore,” ESQ 18 (1972): pp. 166-173.

“The Life of Byron”: Letters and Journals of Lord Byron; with Notices of his Life (1830); Poe’s reference to “cockney biographer” stems from the phrase “Cockney School,” applied by John G. Lockhart to a group of London writers which included Leigh Hunt. Byron also used the term.

“Mr. Galt”: John Galt, a Scot, wrote a Life of Lord Byron (1830).

“Anacreon Moore”: Moore was often so styled because of the popularity of his early version of the Odes of Anacreon (1800).

June 1835 - 5 Title: [Anon.]. Blackbeard. A Page from the Colonial History of Philadelphia. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1835. SLM text: p. 595. “Blackbeard” was the name commonly given to the English pirate Edward Teach. The common Latin tag “ars [est] celare artem” derives from Quintilian, Institutio Oratoria, Book 1. The sense is: “The perfection (or height) of art is to conceal art.”

June 1835 - 6 Title: [Eliza Leslie]. Pencil Sketches; or, Outlines of Character and Manners. 2d Ser. Philadelphia; Carey, Lea, & Blanchard, 1835. SLM text: p. 595. “Miss Leslie,” as she usually signed herself, was a successful short story writer, editor, and author of a number of books on domestic science. Poe here calls her “Miss L.,” as he does again when he included her in his “Autography” in SLM 2: 208 (text and note in Mabbott 2: 270-71; 288). Poe had a personal reason for mentioning in [page 24:] this notice her editorship of The Gift . . . for 1836. He had submitted to her his tale “Epimanes” (later retitled “Four Beasts in One”); however, as it turned out, Miss Leslie chose to reprint “MS. Found in a Bottle,” which Poe had earlier sent to the publisher. On September 11 — by which time The Gift had appeared — Poe complained to John P. Kennedy that he had informed the publisher, E. L. Carey, that “MS.” had already appeared in print and that he had sent “Epimanes” as a replacement (see Letters 1: 74-75).

Four of Poe’s late tales were first printed in The Gift: “William Wilson” (1840), “Eleonora” (1842), “The Pit and the Pendulum” (1843), and “The Purloined Letter” (1845). As Poe later acknowledged in a letter to Washington Irving, he had based “William Wilson” on Irving’s “An Unwritten Drama of Lord Byron” in The Gift. . . for 1836 (Letters 2: 688-90). Characteristically, he had publicly attacked Hawthorne for “borrowing” a short story scene from “William Wilson.”

Poe reviewed The Gift. . . for 1836 (see the note on September 1835 - 7, below), where he once again comments on Fanny Kemble’s “countenance” — that is, an engraved portrait of her. [column 2:]

June 1835 - 7 Title: The American Quarterly Review (June 1835). Philadelphia: Carey, Lea & Carey, 1835. SLM text: p. 595. This journal, one of many founded in imitation of British reviews, ran from March 1827 to December 1837. Poe’s comment on “the old charge of superficiality” in the quality of its articles reflects the sensitivity of American writers and critics to contemporary European-particularly British — sneers at the relative thinness of the nation’s culture. His defense at the end of the review of Mrs. Sigourney’s Sketches may reflect the attention given to her in the SLM. Her Sketches had been favorably reviewed in the August 1834 issue (p. 22) and she was a frequent contributor of verses. Widely known as a highly prolific author of sentimental poetry-particularly on the subject of death-Lydia Howard Hunt Sigourney was the subject of fuller comment by Poe in “Autography” (SLM 2: 206) (text and note in Mabbott 2: 265-66; 287) and the reviews listed below under January 1836 - 1 and July 1836 - 3. Felicia Dorothea Hemans, also prolific, sentimental, and popular, is now occasionally remembered for her poem “Casabianca” (“The boy stood on the burning deck”). For later Poe comments, see October 1836 - 7.

 


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Notes:

None.


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[S:0 - BRP5S, 1997] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions - The Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe (B. R. Pollin) (June 1835 (Notes))