HWL. Outre-Mer: A Pilgrimage Beyond the Sea.  Autograph manuscript, [1833]


Longfellow Papers MS Am 1340 (68) p. 231-232. Houghton Library.

The page from Longfellow's manuscript, with its many corrections and pasted-in scraps of paper, sheds light on the composition of his first book, a travelogue based on his experiences in Europe. Outre-Mer was his "tailor's drawer," a name the Spanish give-as he explains in one of the chapters-"to a desultory discourse, wherein various and discordant themes are touched upon, and which is crammed full of little shreds and patches of erudition."

Note the inserted passage on the château de Chambord, a castle in the Loire Valley he visited in 1826: "It seems as if the strong hand of the builder had been arrested in the midst of his task by the stronger hand of death; and the unfinished fabric stands a lasting monument both of the power and weakness of man,-of his vast purposes desires, his disappointed sanguine hopes, his ambitious purposes,-and of the unlooked for conclusion which the goal at where which, where all these desires and hopes and purposes are so often arrested…."