Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0026451, Tue, 15 Sep 2015 16:59:39 -0300

RES: [NABOKV-L] RES: [NABOKV-L] Was Nabokov a
Eric Hyman: Yes, but the “raptus” in question is in a legal document, a
release of Chaucer from procedures seeking redress. It couldn’t possibly be
the medical or religious metaphor. See The Riverside Chaucer, 3d ed., Ed.
Larry Benson (1987) xxi-xxii.

Jansy Mello: You must be right, the use of “raptus” in a legal document
related to Chaucer’s release, as pointed out by you, cannot apply to raptus
as a pathological seizure or to altered states of consciousness - also
because its use in English texts, in the latter sense, is only registered a
few centuries later*.
I got carried away by its later resonance in English, rapt attention and
rapture as a positive kind of “abduction” or “rape” of minds and hearts, as
it’s been felt and described by VN. The associative field (quite new to me)
linking rape and rapture added an unexpected verbal dimension to my feeling
about Lolita’s and HH’s wanderings and towards HH’s seductive appeals to the
“jurors” ** . Words!!!


*- Former posting by Jansy Mello: Chaucer & “raptus” must flare up many
debates since raptus also means “seizure” and is a term found in medical
texts and, in religious manuscripts, it emerges in the sense that, in
English, leads us to “rapture” , the kind of ecstasy often associated to or
found in VN’s writings, as: “Let all of life be an unfettered howl. Like the
crowd greeting the gladiator. Don't stop to think, don't interrupt the
scream, exhale, release life's rapture.” [snip]

**- Suddenly a connection between “raptus”/abduction and the word seduction
popped up. I did a quick check…
<http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=seduce&allowed_in_frame=0> seduce
(v.) <http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=seduce> 1520s, "to persuade
a vassal, etc., to desert his allegiance or service," from Latin seducere
"lead away, lead astray," from se- "aside, away" (see
<http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=secret&allowed_in_frame=0> secret
(n.)) + ducere "to lead" (see
<http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=duke&allowed_in_frame=0> duke
(n.)). Sexual sense, now the prevailing one, is attested from 1550s and
apparently was not in Latin. Originally "entice (a woman) to a surrender of
chastity." Related: Seduced; seducing. Replaced Middle English seduisen
(late 15c.), from Middle French séduire "seduce," from Old French suduire
"to corrupt, seduce," from Latin subducere "draw away, withdraw, remove"
(see <http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=subduce&allowed_in_frame=0>

Search archive with Google:

Contact the Editors: mailto:nabokv-l@utk.edu,nabokv-l@holycross.edu
Zembla: http://www.libraries.psu.edu/nabokov/zembla.htm
Nabokv-L policies: http://web.utk.edu/~sblackwe/EDNote.htm
Nabokov Online Journal:" http://www.nabokovonline.com
AdaOnline: "http://www.ada.auckland.ac.nz/
The Nabokov Society of Japan's Annotations to Ada: http://vnjapan.org/main/ada/index.html
The VN Bibliography Blog: http://vnbiblio.com/
Search the archive with L-Soft: https://listserv.ucsb.edu/lsv-cgi-bin/wa?A0=NABOKV-L

Manage subscription options :http://listserv.ucsb.edu/lsv-cgi-bin/wa?SUBED1=NABOKV-L