NABOKV-L post 0018066, Wed, 25 Mar 2009 22:59:57 -0300

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Re: de fencing lessons]
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JM: I'm almost joing Andrea and Carmenolyn under a bus, but for the opposite reason,ie: for having been "right" on three counts ( as in fairy-tales, as VN remarked once). This indicates that I've developed a "fatally rigid" assertiveness. I'll mend my ways to avoid any crashing clash (Newton's 3rd Law?). I was saved from an even worse fate, thanks to AS ( in a message to SK-B): Sorry if I was a bit too hard on you in my previous postings. But you are misinterpreting my admirable theory in a most painful way. I'm sorry, but Jansy doesn't seem to understand it either. Perhaps, thanks to SK-B, too - ├ža va sans dire. Fortunately he took pity on me an added a most apposite condensed lecture and examples on "You and Thou", in BardSpeak.
Stan, Shakespeare and Dante (following brighter lights: C.Paglia, JLBorges) have captured the emerging English and Italian, working through ecclesiastic and aristocratic formalities in connection to the language that was being spoken by the people.VN's position is not the same, but did you imply that Pushkin's, for the emerging Russian, might have been - something to which polyglot VN would be particularly sensitive?
J.Aisenberg, indeed, poor Aunt Sybil seems to have been "a self sacrificing woman" whom we might pity - but she, at least, managed to survive to enjoy a little of the left-overs? Now the other Aunt's (Maud) room kept as a sanctuary...this remains a puzzle to me.


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J.Aisenberg [ to JM -I always thought (incorrectly?) that Aunt Sybil occupied HH's mother's place in relation to the boy and to the boy's widowed father...Not necessarily like Kunin's Aunt Maud seducing little Shade] Jansy's quite right, H.H. reports, servants rumors I believe, that Sybil was in love with his father and that he "light heartedly" took advantage of this fact one rainy afternoon and forgot about it entirely by the time the weather had cleared, more or less correctly paraphrased. I've always had a slight fondness for this self sacrificing woman whose maternal dedication seems to have gone sadly unappreciated.

S.K-B: Jansy: two quick reactions (recalling Newton's 3rd Law...) a. Since 'M' is the midway, 13th letter, for most English Dictionaries the M section is approx. central page-wise, and hence the most likely to be found 'open' after casual flippage; b. If Zemblan is Indo-European, 'coramen' might also be related to the Latin proposition _coram_ meaning 'in the presence of,' ...[...] Native Anglophones are generally more easily misled by BardSpeak than 'foreigners' are. We can be so deaf to how the English language was changing grammatically, phonetically, and lexically during the 15th to 17th centuries.We giggle in the wrong places ..Risking a longer example, note the now easily-lost subtleties of THOU and YOU ...Familiar, though to those languages which retain the 'tutoyer' conventions.McWhorter & others swear they never really understood Shakespeare until they read him in German or French. I see a connection here with VN's approach to Pushkin's Onegin: how to capture the emerging Russian for modern readers.

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