Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0020875, Thu, 14 Oct 2010 13:06:34 -0300

Re: Lukin
Matthew Roth: I wrote a bit about the etymology of Lukin in the Fall 2007 Nabokovian...But even if we acknowledge the similarity in names, that still doesn't solve the etymology problem, since the same light v. wolf argument exists concerning Lykaon, too. ..My own belief is that VN chose Lukin because he wanted both meanings: light & wolf. Light is important because it relates to the sun/moon imagery associated with John Shade, while the wolf etymology must be related to the versipel/vseslav lupine elements of PF.

JM: Perhaps associations between names, in Nabokov and elsewhere, shouldn't be examined following their etymological derivations (at least, this is how Levi-Strauss saw it in "Structural Anthropology: The Symbolic Machine"), but some other kind of product (similes? special choices?) Take the convoluted indicators in VN which show that "Uran the Last" is no blood relation of "Alfin the vague" ( although "Alfin" is an anagram of "final", or "last"...) although both reigned in "Uranograd."*

The little item that inspired me ( I don't know if anyone else has mentioned it already) derives from Kinbote's comments: "We may add that Charles the Beloved could boast of some Russian blood. In medieval times two of his ancestors had married Novgorod princesses. Queen Yaruga (reigned 1799-1800) his great-great-granddam, was half Russian; and most historians believe that Yaruga's only child Igor was not the son of Uran the Last (reigned 1798-1799) but the fruit of her amours with the Russian adventurer Hodinski, her goliart (court jester) and a poet of genius, said to have forged in his spare time a famous old Russian chanson de geste, generally attributed to an anonymous bard of the twelfth century." It is actually a very simple item. Queen Yaruga (Uran's wife) had a son with Hodinski ( a poet of genius) named Igor, ie: Prince Igor, the hero of "The Slovo" (referred in connection to the "famous old Russian chanson the geste"). I had never before linked Yaruga's prince, CK's ancestor, to the Slovo by his so obvious name, Igor!

* In a separate posting I'll present something distantly connected to Uranus (not to "uranism"), who is sometimes described as one of the sons of Chronus and Ananke. Chronus is sometimes seen as a "cosmological doubling of the Titan Kronos (or "Father Time")," or combined, as Phanes and Ophion ( Olam; Oulomos)...
Namely, Hazel's innefectual savior, "old father time..." and a surprise.

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