Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0016933, Mon, 18 Aug 2008 09:52:51 -0400

THOUGHTS: Housman in PF
While on vacation in New Hampshire, I happened to find, in a used book
store, a first edition of Housman's The Name and Nature of Poetry. As others
before me have noted, this book provides the source of Kinbote's paraphrase
in his note to line 920: "Housman . . . says somewhere (in a foreword?)
exactly the opposite: The bristling of thrilled little hairs obstructed his
barbering." When Kinbote guesses that the Housman passage is from a
foreword, he is of course wrong, since the passage in question occurs
towards the end of the lecture. But perhaps he is not so wrong as we
thought. The edition I found still retains its original dust jacket (unlike
the library copies I have seen) and it happens that the very passage
paraphrased by Kinbote is quoted on the inside front flap of the jacket. Not
exactly a foreword, but this may be what Kinbote/Nabokov had in mind, I

Matt Roth

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