Text: Edgar Allan Poe to George W. Eveleth — February 16, 1847 (LTR-249)


New-York: Feb. 16. 47.

My Dear Sir,

Some weeks ago I mailed you two newspapers which, from what you say in your last letter I see you have not received. I now enclose some slips which will save me the necessity of writing on painful topics. By and bye I will write you more at length.

Please re-inclose me the slips, when read.

What you tell me about the accusation of plagiarism made by the “Phil. Sat. Ev. Post” surprises me. It is the first I heard of it — with the exception of a hint made in one of your previous letters — but which I did not then comprehend. Please let me know as many particulars as you can remember — for I must see into the charge — Who edits the paper? — who publishes it? etc etc. etc. — about what time was the accusation made? I assure you that it is totally false. In 1840 I published a book with this title —”The Conchologist's First-Book — A System of Testaceous Malacology, arranged expressly for the use of Schools, in which the animals, according to Cuvier, are given with the shells, a great number of new species added, and the whole brought up, as accurately as possible, to the present condition of the science. By Edgar A. Poe. With Illustrations of 21 S shells, presenting a correct type of each [page 2:] genus.” This, I presume, is the work referred to. I wrote it, in conjunction with Professor Thomas Wyatt, and Professor Mc Murtrie of Pha — my name being put to the work, as best known and most likely to aid its circulation. I wrote the Preface and Introduction, and translated from Cuvier, the accounts of the animals etc. All school-books are necessarily made in a similar way. The very title-page acknowledges that the animals are given “according to Cuvier”.

This charge is infamous and I shall prosecute for it, as soon as I settle my accounts with the “Mirror.”

Truly your friend,
E A Poe





[S:0 - MS, 18xx] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Letters - Poe to G. W. Eveleth (LTR249/RCL671)