Has Nabokov commented explicitly on Alexander Herzen elsewhere apart from Speak, Memory? The nod to Herzen's From the Other Shore has been noted long ago as is this passage (as a caption to their Petersburg address):
"Aleksandr Ivanovich Hertzen (1812–1870) was a famous liberal (whom this commemoration by a police state would hardly have gratified) as well as the talented author of Bïloe i Dumï (translatable as “Bygones and Meditations”), one of my father’s favorite books."
Searching in the forum this thread comes up:
The beggar, bugger mistranslation seems awfully familiar, I seem to have read it somewhere in VN, just can't put my finger on it. There's a brief mention of Herzen and Belinsky in Nabokov's EO, but it is too tangential. The most intriguing and wonderful essay on Herzen is of course, by Isaiah Berlin and one wishes to do an entry in Nabokov's Reading.