NABOKV-L post 0018534, Thu, 20 Aug 2009 22:31:48 -0300

Re: QUERY: Alexander von Humbert.

Jordan Bowen: I recently read about Alexander von Humboldt, the German explorer thought to be a homosexual pederast[ ...] I am not terribly
well versed in Nabokov scholarship, but I wonder out of curiosity if this
correlation had not been suggested as an influence for the name (and yet
another poke at homosexuals.)

JM: The subject of the query is "Alexander von Humbert," but I cannot remember any "poke" related to Alexander von Humboldt, in "Lolita", through a play with their surnames (the vague indication suggests an overtly spitefulit mood on the part of VN). Try as I may, I cannot find paragraphs or page to check how VN worded this "poke," nor why.
Could anyone give me an indication about where "A. von Humbert" is mentioned in "Lolita" for the proper context?

Search archive with Google:

Contact the Editors:,
Visit Zembla:
View Nabokv-L policies:
Visit "Nabokov Online Journal:"

Manage subscription options: