A Very Popular and Important Anthology of American Poetry

    [Edgar Allan Poe, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Clement C. Moore, Francis Scott Key, et. al. contributors] . [Rufus W. Griswold, editor]. The Poets and Poetry of America. Philadelphia: Carey and Hart, 1842. First edition of this important anthology of American poetry, the finest up to then. Octavo. xxiv, 468 pages. With engraved frontispiece and title-page inserted at front. Bound in a beautiful contemporary binding of full brown calf, boards ruled in gilt, multi-colored gilt floral leather onlays on covers, spine with decorative gilt (leather labels now missing), gilt board edges and turn-ins, blue watered silk endleaves, all edges gilt. Binding quite worn and soiled, front board nearly detached, binder's blanks quite foxed, text and inserted prelims somewhat foxed. Still, a fair copy of this important book, with early book appearances by Poe, Longfellow, Clement C. Moore, and a book appearance of the "Star Spangled Banner".
    Griswold (1815-1857) was a well-respected, though not well-liked, literary critic, famous for his excellent scholarship and his acerbic personality. Although this is considered one of the finest anthologies of American poetry, Griswold was criticized for his choices for inclusion - setting off many feuds, most notably with Edgar Allan Poe, which would last both of their lifetimes (even after Poe's death, Griswold masqueraded as Poe's executor, finding further opportunities of maligning Poe's reputation, until his own death).

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    April, 2015
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