NABOKV-L post 0014453, Thu, 21 Dec 2006 11:40:38 -0500

Scientists May Have Found Those Nabokov Baby Blues
[EDNOTE. Steve Blackwell sends a link to an article in the New York Times on Nabokov's blues. -- SES]

December 19, 2006
Scientists May Have Found Those Nabokov Baby Blues

In the 1940s, a decade before achieving international renown with “Lolita,” Vladimir Nabokov solidified his reputation as a lepidopterist by reclassifying the wide-ranging North American butterfly genus Lycaeides, the “blues.”
Nabokov divided the blues into two large species — Lycaeides melissa, the Melissa blue, and Lycaeides idas, the northern blue, with overlapping ranges in the mountains of the West. He also theorized that the blues he found high in the Tetons and Colorado Rockies were hybrids, but he lacked the tools to prove it.
Now, a group of scientists from Texas State University, the University of California at Davis, the University of Nevada at Reno and the University of Tennessee have proposed that an “unnamed” population of Alpine Lycaeides in the Sierra Nevada is a hybrid species formed through an ancient mixing of Lycaeides melissa and Lycaeides idas.
. . . .

Search the archive:
Contact the Editors:,
Visit Zembla:
View Nabokv-L policies: