In this new edition of The Piazza Tales, the editors of the acclaimed Northwestern-Newberry Edition of the Writings of Herman Melville have used the original magazine versions for five of the six stories in order to present the most accurate tests of these works. Here, in such famous stories as "Bartleby, the Scrivener" and "The Encantadas, or Enchanted Isles," we find Melville's imagination and style at its best. Of the less well known tales, the humor in "The Piazza" and "The Lightning-Rod Man," and the gothic horror of "The Bell Tower," command attention as well. Whether in the exotic Galapagos or the more familiar climes of Wall Street or a Massachusetts farmhouse, Melville's power and imagination transport the reader into his unique worlds.
This scholarly edition presents texts as close to the author's intentions as surviving evidence permits. Based on surviving manuscripts, on original newspaper and magazine printings, and on collations of magazine printings with the book of editions of The Piazza Tales, the text incorporates over 800 emendations by the editors and over 200 from later printings during Melville's lifetime.
This edition is an Approved Text of the Center for Editions of American Authors (Modern Language Association of America).