The authoritative text of The Marble Faun is the edition published by the Ohio State University Press in 1968 as a volume of the Centenary Edition of the Works of Nathaniel Hawthorne . It is approved for teaching purposes by the Modern Language Association. A more accessible edition of the version is in the Library of America series.
Because that edition was copyrighted in 1968, we could not use it as the basis for this hypertext. Instead, we use the text of the first American edition, published in 1860, and thus now in the public domain. For OCR scanning purposes, we used the paperback edition (not copyrighted) of 1958 by Pocket Books, New York, with an introduction (not reproduced here) copyrighted 1958 by Maxwell Geismar.
We have also benefitted greatly from the notes of the Bobbs-Merrill edition of 1971 [Rup71], which referred to Hawthorne's manuscript. Rupp states that Hawthorne gave the manuscript to his English friend, Henry A. Bright, before leaving to return to America on May 25, 1859. Bright's daughter gave it to the British Museum in 1931.
The first version of this book was published in England in 1859, in order to secure British copyright, and the title was given by the publishers as Transformation. Although Hawthorne suggested the title, he was dissatisfied with it. When it was printed a little later in the United States, Ticknor and Fields gave it the title of The Marble Faun.
After publication, Hawthorne was asked to add a conclusion or postscript, explaining some of the mysterious plot for us obtuse readers. The later English editions have what is called a "Postscript". The American editions use the term "Conclusion". Since the latter are slightly fuller, we offer the American version here. The Centenary edition chooses to use the English versions, arguing they were seen later by Hawthorne. The differences are not significant.
Many passages here were copied or paraphrased from journal notes that Hawthorne made on his artistic excursions in Rome and Florence in 1858 and 1859. After his death, his wife, Sophia, published many of them, minus some personal comments and the full text of journal entries that also appeared in the novel. We do not add notes with these journal entries here, because we are not clear about their copyright status, as the full text was not published until 1932.
We have reproduced the text here without regard to the original layout or pagination. Em dashes are rendered as "--" (two hyphens or minus signs) without spaces on either side. The text is not justified to the right margin as in the original. Words orginally hyphenated at the ends of lines have been divided by hyphens or not, according to our best suppositions. Spelling, capitalization, and punctuation have not been modernized further than what was done in the Pocket Books edition.