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Versions of Battle-Pieces: Author's Copies

Battle Pieces Leaf

Melville's revisions appear in two physical versions of Battle-Pieces, both located at Harvard's Houghton Library and designated Copy A and Copy C. The former is a personal copy of the book with several check marks in the table of contents and three revisions, on pages 23, 27, and 129. Copy C is a bound set of pages for proofing, or as Melville's wife put it in her inscription on the front binder's leaf: "'Revised' sheets—with / Herman's corrections." According the the NN edition of Melville's Published Poems, these pages contain changes at 49 points in the book (584).

In the side-by-side display below, the pull-down beneath each frame is a table of contents of poems.  Pages with penciled inscriptions are also given and noted with an asterisk [*].

Melville's Battle-Pieces / Copy A: Post-publication Revisions / Houghton Library. Harvard University

MEL’s images of Melville’s annotated copies A and C of Battle-Pieces—located in the Melville Collection at Houghton Library, with the call numbers AC85 M4977 866b (A) and AC85 M4977 866b (C)—are digitally reproduced and generously donated by the Modern Books and Manuscript Department of Houghton Library, Harvard College Library. The text of Battle-Pieces was transcribed by Aptara, Inc. from digital images of the 1866 first edition, call number PS2384 .B3 1866, in the Clifton Waller Barrett Library of American Literature, Herman Melville Collection, in Special Collections of University of Virginia Library.