NABOKV-L post 0018149, Tue, 7 Apr 2009 17:38:09 -0300

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[NABOKOV-L] [Query] Ada and Dolores: Our Lady's Tears
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An exchange, from ADA ( dialogues!):

- 'Tell me, Bouteillan,' asked Marina, 'what other good white wine do we have - what can you recommend?' The butler smiled and whispered a fabulous name.
-'Yes, oh, yes,' said Demon. 'Ah, my dear, you should not think up dinners all by yourself.[...] What else, Van?'
-'You still beat me at fencing [...] That's not real "sudak", papa, though it's tops, I assure you.'
(Marina, having failed to obtain the European product in time for the dinner, had chosen the nearest thing, wall-eyed pike, or 'dory,' with Tartar sauce and boiled young potatoes.)
-'Ah!' said Demon, tasting Lord Byron's Hock. 'This redeems Our Lady's Tears.'

Bouteillan whispers a fabulous name to Marina. Van advises his father about a "sudak" substitute, while we learn that Marina was offering "wall-eyed pike" or "dory" for dinner.
Next Demon tastes wine from the Rhine or Moselle region, mentioning Byron*, and "Our Lady's Tears."


*Wikiquotes, from Byron, offers The Waltz (l.29) "Imperial Waltz! imported from the Rhine (Famed for the growth of pedigrees and wine), Long be thine import from all duty free, And hock itself be less esteem'd than thee."

Query: What do these "Our Lady's Tears" indicate? I once tasted "Lachrima Christi" ( Our Lord's Tears), a sweet white wine from grapes that grow close to the Vesuvium, but it shouldn't be offered during dinner.
An option would be "Liebfraumilch" ( the labels often have Our Lady suckling infant Jesus). Is there such a wine? Might this be a reference to Dolores ( Dolores as in "Our Lady of Tears"), to whom Van also mentions in relation to Swinburne and his poem?
I fail to understand all the links which seem to demand a common thread.
Waltzes, tears and legs in wine, Dolores, Byron, incest, Ada... what else? Is there any "fishy clue"?

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