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This edition of the Complete Works of
Edgar Allan Poe is limited to Five Hundred
Signed and Numbered sets, of which this is


P9E *

Edited and Chronologically Arranged on the Basis

of the Standard Text, with Certain Additional



Professor of English in
Dartmouth College

Illustrated by









Ube Knickerbocker press


Copyright, 1902
(For Introduction and Designs)


ttbe Knickerbocker f>rese, "Wcw florfc



William Ellery Charming i

J. Fenimore Cooper 22

R. H. Home 42

Amelia Welby 74

Elizabeth Barrett Barrett 82

William W. Lord 121

Some Secrets of the Magazine Prison-House . 138
Mr. Longfellow and Other Plagiarists . . . 143
Mr. Longfellow, Mr. Willis, and the Drama . 220

Elizabeth Oakes Smith 270

William Gilmore Simms 287

William Cullen Bryant 293

The Literati ........ 312

George Bush 317

George H. Colton 319

N. P. Willis 322

William M. Gillespie ... .332

Charles F. Briggs 333

William Kirkland ...... 337

John W. Francis 339



Anna Cora Mowatt .... ,,. . 341
George B. Cheever . . . . . .347

Charles Anthon 349

Ralph Hoyt 352

Gulian C. Verplanck 355

Freeman Hunt 356

Piero Maroncelli 360

Laughton Osborn 361

Fitz-Greene Halleck ....... 567

Ann S. Stephens ... . 376

Evert A. Duyckinck ... . 377

Mary Gove .... . 381

James Aldrich 382

Henry Cary 385

List of Illustrations


The Masque of the Red Death . Frontispiece

" There was much of the beautiful, much of the
wanton, much of the bizarre, something of the ter
rible, and not a little of that which might have ex
cited disgust."

(See Vol. iv., page 331.)

J. Fenimore Cooper 24

Elizabeth Barrett Browning . . . .84

From a painting in the National Portrait Gallery,

Robert Browning 100

From the painting by his son.

Lord Tennyson 120

From the painting by G. F. Watts.

The Domain of Arnheim 158

" During the forenoon he passed between shores
of a tranquil and domestic beauty."
(See Vol. vi., page 248.)

The Fall of the House of Usher . . . .200

" But then without those doors there did stand the
lofty and enshrouded figure of the Lady Madeline of

(See Vol. ii., page 316.)


List of Illustrations

Nathaniel P. Willis .
William Cullen Bryant
Fitz-Greene Halleck

. 222

. 2Q4

. 368


William Ellery Channing

N speaking of Mr. William Ellery Channing,
who has just published a very neat little
volume of poems, we feel the necessity of
employing the indefinite rather than the definite article.
He is a, and by no means the, William Ellery Chan
ning. He is only the son of the great essayist deceased.
He is just such a person, in despite of his clarvm et
venerabile nomen, as Pindar would have designated
by the significant term rig. It may be said in his
favor that nobody ever heard of him. Like an honest
woman, he has always succeeded in keeping himself
from being made the subject of gossip. His book
contains about sixty-three things, which he calls
poems, and which he no doubt seriously supposes so
to be. They are full of all kinds of mistakes, of which
the most important is that of their having been
printed at all. They are not precisely English; nor


William Ellery Channing

will we insult a great nation by calling them Kicka-
poo; perhaps they are Channingese. We may con
vey some general idea of them by two foreign terms
not in common use, the Italian pavoneggiarsi, " to
strut like a peacock," and the German word for " sky
rocketing," schwarmereL They are more prepos
terous, in a word, than any poems except those of
the author of 5am Patch / for we presume we are
right (are we not ?) in taking it for granted that the
author of Sam Patch is the very worst of all the
wretched poets that ever existed upon earth.

In spite, however, of the customary phrase about a
man's " making a fool of himself," we doubt if any
one was ever a fool of his own free will and accord.
A poet, therefore, should not always be taken too
strictly to task. He should be treated with leniency,
and, even when damned, should be damned with re
spect. Nobility of descent, too, should be allowed its
privileges not more in social life than in letters. The
son of a great author cannot be handled too tenderly
by the critical Jack Ketch. Mr. Channing must be
hung, that *s true. He must be hung in tetrorem, and
for this there is no help under the sun; but then we
shall do him all manner of justice, and observe every
species of decorum, and be especially careful of his
feelings, and hang him gingerly and gracefully, with
a silken cord, as the Spaniards hang their grandees of
the blue blood, their nobles of the sangre azuL


William Ellery Channing

To be serious, then, as we always wish to be if possi
ble, Mr. Channing (whom we suppose to be a very
young man, since we are precluded from supposing
him a very old one) appears to have been inoculated,
at the same moment, with virus from Tennyson and
from Carlyle. And here we do not wish to be mis
understood. For Tennyson, as for a man imbued
with the richest and rarest poetic impulses, we have
an admiration, a reverence unbounded. His Morte
d f Arthur, his Locksley Hall, his Sleeping Beauty his
Lady of Shalott, his Lotos Eaters, his Oenone, and
many other poems, are not surpassed, in all that gives
to poetry its distinctive value, by the compositions of
any one living or dead. And his leading error, that
error which renders him unpopular, a point, to be
sure, of no particular importance, that very error, we
say, is founded in truth, in a keen perception of the
elements of poetic beauty. We allude to his quaint-
ness, to what the world chooses to term his affectation.
No true poet, no critic whose approbation is worth
even a copy of the volume we now hold in our hand,
will deny that he feels impressed, sometimes even to
tears, by many of those very affectations which he is
impelled by the prejudice of his education, or by the
cant of his reason, to condemn. He should thus be
led to examine the extent of the one, and to be wary of
the deductions of the other. In fact, the profound
intuition of Lord Bacon has supplied, in one of his


William Ellery Channing

immortal apothegms, the whole philosophy of the
point at issue. " There is no exquisite beauty," he
truly says, " without some strangeness in its propor
tions." We maintain, then, that Tennyson errs, not
in his occasional quaintness, but in its continual and
obtrusive excess. And, in accusing Mr. Channing of
having been inoculated with virus from Tennyson, we
merely mean to say that he has adopted and exag
gerated that noble poet's characteristic defect, having
mistaken it for his principal merit.

Mr. Tennyson is quaint only; he is never, as some
have supposed him, obscure, except, indeed, to the
uneducated, whom he does not address. Mr. Carlyle,
on the other hand, is obscure only; he is seldom, as
some have imagined him, quaint. So far he is right ;
for although quaintness, employed by a man of judg
ment and genius, may be made auxiliary to a poem,
whose true thesis is beauty, and beauty alone, it is
grossly, and even ridiculously, out of place in a work
of prose. But in his obscurity it is scarcely necessary
to say that he is wrong. Either a man intends to be
understood, or he does not. If he write a book which
he intends not to be understood, we shall be very
happy indeed not to understand it; but if he write a
book which he means to be understood, and, in this
book, be at all possible pains to prevent us from under
standing it, we can only say that he is an ass;
and this, to be brief, is our private opinion of Mr.


William Ellery Channing

Carlyle, which we now take the liberty of making

It seems that, having deduced from Tennyson and
Carlyle an opinion of the sublimity of everything odd,
and of the profundity of everything meaningless, Mr.
Channing has conceived the idea of setting up for him
self as a poet of unusual depth, and very remarkable
powers of mind. His airs and graces, in consequence,
have a highly picturesque effect, and the Boston critics,
who have a notion that poets are porpoises (for they are
always talking about their running in " schools "),
cannot make up their minds as to what particular
school he must belong. We say the Bobby Button
school, by all means. He clearly belongs to that.
And should nobody ever have heard of the Bobby
Button school, that is a point of no material import
ance. We will answer for it, as it is one of our own.
Bobby Button is a gentleman with whom, for a long
time, we have had the honor of an intimate acquaint
ance. His personal appearance is striking. He has
quite a big head. His eyes protrude and have all the
air of saucers. His chin retreats. His mouth is de
pressed at the corners. He wears a perpetual frown
of contemplation. His words are slow, emphatic, and
oracular. His " thes," " ands," and " buts" have
more meaning than other men's polysyllables. His
nods would have put Burleigh's to the blush. His
whole aspect, indeed, conveys the idea of a gentleman


William Ellery Channing

modest to a fault, and painfully overburdened with
intellect. We insist, however, upon calling Mr. Chan-
ning's school of poetry the Bobby Button school,
rather because Mr. Channing's poetry is strongly sug
gestive of Bobby Button than because Mr. Button
himself ever dallied, to any very great extent, with the
Muses. With the exception, indeed, of a very fine
Sonnet to a Pig, or rather the fragment of a sonnet,
for he proceeded no farther than the words " O piggy
wiggy," with the O italicized for emphasis, with the
exception of this, we say, we are not aware of his hav
ing produced anything worthy of that stupendous
genius which is certainly in him, and only wants, like
the starling of Sterne, " to get out."

The best passage in the book before us is to be
found at page 121, and we quote it, as a matter of
simple justice, in full:

Dear friend, in this fair atmosphere again,
Far from the noisy echoes of the main,
Amid the world-old mountains, and the hills
From whose strange grouping a fine power distils
The soothing and the calm, I seek repose,
The city's noise forgot and hard stern woes,
As thou once saidst, the rarest sons of earth
Have in the dust of cities shown their worth.
Where long collision with the human curse
Has of great glory been the frequent nurse,
And only those who In sad cities dwell
Are of the green trees fully sensible.

William Ellery Channing

To them the silver bells of tinkling streams
Seem brighter than an angel's laugh in dreams,

The few lines italicized are highly meritorious, and
the whole extract is so far decent and intelligible, that
we experienced a feeling of surprise upon meeting it
amid the doggerel which surrounds it. Not less was
our astonishment upon finding, at page 18, a fine
thought so well embodied as the following :

Or see the early stars, a mild sweet train,
Come out to bury the diurnal sun.

But, in the way of commendation, we have now done.
We have carefully explored the whole volume, in
vain, for a single additional line worth even the most
qualified applause.

The utter abandon, the charming neglige the perfect
looseness (to use a Western phrase) of his rhythm, is
one of Mr. C.'s most noticeable, and certainly one of
his most refreshing traits. It would be quite a pleasure
to hear him read or scan, or to hear anybody else read
or scan, such a line as this, at page 3, for example :

Masculine almost though softly carved in grace,

where " masculine " has to be read as a trochee, and
" almost " as an iambus ; or this, at page 8 :

That compels me on through wood, and fell, and moor,

William Ellery Channing

where " that compels " has to be pronounced as
equivalent to the iambus " me on " ; or this, at page 18 ;

I leave thee, the maid spoke to the true youth,

where both the " thes " demand a strong accent to
preserve the iambic rhythm ; or this, at page 29 :

So in our steps strides truth and honest trust,

where (to say nothing of the grammar, which may be
Dutch, but is not English) it is quite impossible to get
through with the " steps strides truth " without dis
locating the under jaw; or this, at page 32 :

The serene azure the keen stars are now;
or this, on the same page :

Sometime of sorrow, joy to thy Future/
or this, at page 56 :

Harsh action, even in repose inwardly harsh;
or this, at page 59 :

Provides amplest enjoyment. O my brother;
or this, at page 138 :

Like the swift petrel, mimicking the wave's measure;

William Ellery Channing

about all of which the less we say the better.
At page 96, we read thus :

Where the untrammelled soul on her wind pinions,
Fearlessly sweeping, defies my earthly foes,
There, there upon that infinitest sea
Lady, thy hope, so fair a hope, summons me.

At page 51, we have it thus:

The river calmly flows
Through shining banks, thro* lonely glen
Where the owl shrieks, tho 1 ne'er the cheer of men

Has stirred its mute repose ;
Still if you should walk there you would go there again.

At page 136, we read as follows :

Tune thy clear voice to no funereal song,
For O Death stands to welcome thee sure.

At page 1 1 6, he has this:

These graves, you mean;
Their history who knows betfer than I ?
For in the busy street strikes on my ear
Each sound, even inaudible voices
Lengthen the long tale my memory tells.

Just below, on the same page, he has
I see but little difference tru/y;

and at page 76, he fairly puts the climax to metrical
absurdity in the lines which follow:


William Ellery Channing

The spirit builds his house in the last flowers
A beautiful mansion; how the colors live,
Intricately deJfcate !

This is to be read, of course, intrikkittly delikkit, and
" intrikkittly delikkit " it is, unless, indeed, we are
very especially mistaken.

The affectations the Tennysonisms of Mr. Chan
ning pervade his book at all points, and are not easily
particularized. He employs, for example, the word
" delight " for " delighted " ; as at page 2 :

Delight to trace the mountain-brook's descent.

He uses, also, all the prepositions in a different sense
from the rabble. If, for instance, he was called upon
to say " on," he would n't say it by any means, but
he M say " off," and endeavor to make it answer the
purpose. For " to," in the same manner, he says
" from " ; for " with," " of," and so on ; at page 2,
for example :

Nor less in winter, 'mid the glittering banks
Heaped of unspotted snow, the maiden roved.

For " serene," he says " serene " ; as at page 4 :

The influence of this serene isle.
For " subdued," he says " su&dued " ; as at page 16 :

So full of thought, so subdued to bright fears.

William Ellery Channing

By the way, what kind of fears are bright ?

For " eternal," he says " eterae " ; as at page 30 :

Has risen, and an eterne sun now paints.

For " friendless," he substitutes " friend/ess " ; as at
page 31:

Are drawn in other figures. Not friendless,
To " future " he prefers " fufure " ; as at page 32 :
Sometime of sorrow. Joy to thy fufu/e,

To " azure," in the same way, he prefers " azure " ; as
at page 46 :

Ye stand each separate in the azure,

In place of " unheard," he writes " unheard " ; as thus,
at page 47:

Or think, tho' unheard, that your sphere is dumb.

In place of " perchance," he writes " perchance " ; as
at page 71:

When pei-chance sorrow with her icy smile.

Instead of " more infinite," he writes " infin/ter," with
an accent on the " nit," as thus, at page 100 :

Hope's child, I summon infiu/ter powers,

William Ellery Channing

And here we might as well ask Mr. Channing, in pass
ing, what idea he attaches to infinity, and whether he
really thinks that he is at liberty to subject the adjec
tive " infinite " to degrees of comparison. Some of
these days we shall hear, no doubt, of " eternal,"
" eternaler," and " eternalest."

Our author is quite enamored of the word " sump
tuous," and talks about " sumptuous trees," and
" sumptuous girls," with no other object, we think,
than to employ the epithet at all hazards and upon
all occasions. He seems unconscious that it means
nothing more than expensive, or costly; and we are
not quite sure that either trees or girls are, in America,
either the one or the other.

For " loved " Mr. C. prefers to say " was loving,"
and takes great pleasure in the law phrase, " the
same." Both peculiarities are exemplified at page
20, where he says:

The maid was loving this enamoured same.

He is fond also of inversions and contractions, and
employs them in a very singular manner. At page 15

he has,

Now may I thee describe a paradise.

At page 86 he says,

Thou lazy river, flowing neither way
Me figurest, and yet thy banks seem gay.

William Ellery Channing
At page 143 he writes,

Men change that heaven above not more;

meaning that men change so much that heaven above
does not change more. At page 150 he says,

But so much soul hast thou within thy form
Than luscious summer days thou art the more ;

by which he would imply that the lady has so much
soul within her form that she is more luscious than the
luscious summer days.

Were we to quote specimens under the general head
of " utter and irredeemable nonsense," we should
quote nine tenths of the book. Such nonsense, we
mean, as the following from page 1 1 :

I hear thy solemn anthem fall,

Of richest song upon my ear,
That clothes thee in thy golden pall

As this wide sun flows on the mere.

Now let us translate this : He hears (Mr. Channing) a
solemn anthem, of richest song, fall upon his ear, and
this anthem clothes the individual who sings it in that
individual's golden pall in the same manner that, or at
the time when, the wide sun flows on the mere ; which
is all very delightful, no doubt.


William Ellery Channing

At page 37 he informs us that

It is not living,
To a soul believing,
To change each noble joy,
Which our strength employs,
For a state half rotten
And a life of toys ;

and that it is

Better to be forgotten
Than lose equipoise.

And we dare say it is, if one could only understand
what kind of equipose is intended. It is better to be
forgotten, for instance, than to lose one's equipoise
on the top of a shot-tower.

Occupying the whole of page 88, he has the six lines
which follow, and we will present any one (the author
not excepted) with a copy of the volume, if any one
will tell us what they are all about:


He came and waved a little silver wand,
He dropped the veil that hid a statue fair,

He drew a circle with that pearly hand,
His grace confined that beauty in the air,

Those limbs so gentle now at rest from flight,

Those quiet eyes now musing on the night.

At page 102 he has the following:


William Ellery Channing

Dry leaves with yellow ferns, they are
Fit wreath of autumn, while a star
Still, bright, and pure, our frosty air

Shivers in twinkling points

Of thin celestial hair
And thus one side of heaven anoints.

This we think we can explain. Let us see. Dry
leaves, mixed with yellow ferns, are a wreath fit for
autumn at the time when our frosty air shivers a still
bright, and pure star with twinkling points of thin
celestial hair, and with this hair, or hair plaster,
anoints one side of the sky. Yes, this is it, no doubt.
At page 123, we have these lines:

My sweet girl is lying still

In her lovely atmosphere ;
The gentle hopes her blue veins fill

With pure silver warm and clear.

O see her hair, O mark her breast !

Would it not, O ! comfort thee,
If thou couldst nightly go to rest

By that virgin chastity ?

Yes; we think, upon the whole, it would. The eight
lines are entitled a Song, and we should like very
much to hear Mr. Channing sing it.

Pages 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, and 41 are filled with short
Thoughts in what Mr. C. supposes to be the man
ner of Jean Paul. One of them runs thus :

William Ellery Channing

How shall I live ? In earnestness.
What shall I do ? Work earnestly.
What shall I give ? A willingness.
What shall I gain ? Tranquillity.
But do you mean a quietness
In which I act and no man bless ?
Flash out in action infinite and free
Action conjoined with deep tranquillity,
Resting upon the soul's true utterance,
And life shall flow as merry as a dance.

All our readers will be happy to hear, we are sure, that
Mr. C. is gong to " flash out." Elsewhere at page 97,
he expresses very similar sentiments :

My empire is myself and I defy

The external ; yes, I rule the whole or die !

It will be observed here that Mr. Channing's empire is
himself (a small kingdom, however), that he intends
to defy " the external," whatever that is (perhaps he
means the infernals), and that, in short, he is going to
rule the whole or die ; all which is very proper, indeed^
and nothing more than we have to expect from Mr. C.
Again, at page 146, he is rather fierce than other
wise. He says:

We surely were not meant to ride the sea,
Skimming the wave in that so prisoned small,

Reposing our infinite faculties utterly.
Boom like a roaring sunlit waterfall,

Humming to infinite abysms : speak loud, speak free.

William Ellery Channing

Here Mr. Channing not only intends to " speak loud
and free " himself, but advises everybody else to do
likewise. For his own part, he says, he is going to
" boom " " to hum and to boom " " to hum like a
roaring waterfall " and " boom to an infinite abysm."
What, in the name of Beelzebub, is to become of us all?
At page 39, while indulging in similar bursts of
fervor and of indignation, he says :

Thou meetest a common man
With a delusive show of can,

and this passage we quote by way of instancing what
we consider the only misprint in the book. Mr. Chan
ning could never have meant to say:

Thou meetest a common man
With a delusive show of can /

for what is a delusive show of can ? No doubt it
should have been,

Thou meetest a little pup

With a delusive show of tin-cup.

A can, we believe is a tin-cup, and the cup must have
been tied to the tail of the pup. Boys will do such
tricks, and there is no earthly way of preventing them,
we believe, short of cutting off their heads, or the tails
of the pups.

William Ellery Channing

And this remarkable little volume is, after all, by
William Ellery Channing. A great name, it has been
said, is, in many cases, a great misfortune. We hear
daily complaints from the George Washington Dixons,
the Socrates Smiths, and the Napoleon Buonaparte
Joneses, about the inconsiderate ambition of their
parents and sponsors. By inducing invidious com
parison, these prxnomina get their bearers (so they
say) into every variety of scrapes. If George Wash
ington Dixon, for example, does not think proper,
upon compulsion, to distinguish himself as a patriot,
he is considered a very singular man; and Socrates
Smith is never brought up before his honor the Mayor
without receiving a double allowance of thirty days;
while his honor the Mayor can assign no sounder rea
son for his severity than that better things than get
ting toddied are to be expected of Socrates. Napoleon
Buonaparte Jones, on the other hand, to say nothing
of being called Nota Bene Jones by all his acquaint
ances, is cowskinned with pefect regularity, five times
a month, merely because people will feel it a point of
honor to cowskin a Napoleon Buonaparte.

And yet these gentlemen, the Smiths and the Joneses,
are wrong in toto f as the Smiths and the Joneses in
variably are. They are wrong, we say, in accusing
their parents and sponsors. They err in attributing
their misfortunes and persecutions to the praenomlna f
to the names assigned them at the baptismal font. Mr.


William Ellery Channing

Socrates Smith does not receive his double quantum of
thirty days because he is called Socrates, but because
he is called Socrates Smith. Mr. Napoleon Buonaparte
Jones is not in the weekly receipt of a flogging on
account of being Mr. Napoleon Buonaparte, but
simply on account of being Mr. Napoleon Buonaparte
Jones. Here, indeed, is a clear distinction. It is the
surname which is to blame, after all. Mr. Smith must

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