The Southern Literary Messenger reprinted Edgar Allan's Poe's short story "The Visionary" in July, 1835. In the Messenger, the original title was changed to "The Visionary -- A Tale." Poe's name appeared as the author of the story for the first time, because, perhaps to tillitate the curiosity of would-be magazine buyers, the publisher of Godey's Lady's Book withheld Poe's identity as author of the Grotesque tale of ill-fated love. The Messenger's version of the poem is Variant C.

The lyrical romantic poem embedded in the story is considered one of Poe's more important poems. Philip Cook wrote to Poe that the closing stanza "... is the perfection of melody." (Mabbott, 211) The protagonist of the poem finds his beloved married to an older nobleman. This may be based on an incident in Thomas Moore's biography of Byron that occurs on the eve of the wedding of Byron's early love to someone else.

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Kathy Dudely, MAT Candidate, Bard College
Professor Furr, Advisor