In Memoriam: Dieter E. Zimmer, by Maurice Couturier

Submitted by dana_dragunoiu on Wed, 07/08/2020 - 06:03

I am very sad to hear that Dieter has passed away. He was one of the
first admirers and commentators of Nabokov, one of the most dedicated
scholars on his works, his biography,  his butterflies,  plus a rigorous
translator. The Nabokov community owes him a great deal and his name
will remain attached to that of the author of Lolita, Pale Fire, and Ada. I
have his annotated editions on my shelves and made an abundant use of
them.

I met Dieter only once, in Cambridge in 1999, but I often communicated
with him and depended upon him and his wonderful fund of information for
my publications and my annotations. He was a quiet and friendly man who
never sought to start a polemic, contrary to me. He was a kind of
archeologist, served by an excellent knowledge of Nabokov's three or
four languages. He cared less to offer an interpretation than to unearth
a little gem.

He was only four years my senior but discovered Nabokov excactly ten
years before I did. And he met Nabokov and didn't have to beg for an
apparition!

Maurice Couturier