'Which reminds me painfully of the golubyanki (petits bleus) Aqua used to send me,' remarked Demon with a sigh (having mechanically opened the message). 'Is tender Vicinity some girl I know? Because you may glare as much as you like, but this is not a wire from doctor to doctor.'
Van raised his eyes to the Boucher plafond of the breakfast room, and shaking his head in derisive admiration, commented on Demon's acumen. (1.29)
 
, .
Lamore absent-mindedly looked at the plafond painted à la Boucher of the room [in the former palace of Marquise de Pompadour] where they [Lamore & Talleyrand] had supper. (Aldanov, Devil's Bridge, 1925, Part Two, IV)
 
Pompadury i Pompadurshi ("Pompadours and Pompadouresses," 1863) is a satire by Saltykov-Shchedrin.
 
Aqua and her twin sister Marina (Demon's misress, mother of Van, Ada and Lucette) seem to be linked to Lyubinka and Anninka, the twin sisters in Saltykov's novel Gospoda Golovlyovy ("The Golovlyovs," 1875-80). A niece of Iudushka (little Judas) Golovlyov, Anninka is a provincial actress, who leads a dream-like existence. She undressed in La belle Hélène, appeared drunk in La Prichole, sang all kind of shameless things in the scenes from La grande duchesse de Gerolstein and even regretted that it wasnt accepted to act on stage la chose and lamour, imagining how seductively she would have jerked her waist and how splendidly she would have twirled the tail of her dress. The reader of Shchedrins novel is supposed to know this; still, men in the audience devour with their eyes the curve of Anninkas naked body hoping that she would explain to them what exactly la chose is.
Like Shchedrins Anninka, Marina Durmanov is an actress devoid of talent. Chose is Van's alma mater (see in Zembla my article "The Naked Truth or the Reader's Sentimental Education in Ada's Quelque Chose University").
 
Christosik ("little Christ," as G. A. Vronsky called all pretty starlets, including Marina, 1.3) is a negative, as it were, of Saltykov's Iudushka (Russian diminutive of Judas).
 
There is Lubyanka (headquarters of Cheka, GPU, NKVD, KGB - Lenin's, Stalin's, et al.'s secret police - in Moscow) in golubyanka. In his reminiscences of Ilya Fondaminski (VN's "Fondik") VN's friend V. M. Zenzinov tells about Fondaminski's wife Amalia Gavronsky who as a young girl lived in the Lubyanka house (that belonged then to an insurance company):
 
, , , . 
 
Marina spent a rukuliruyushchiy month with Demon at Kitezh (1.3). The non-Russian verb rukulirovat' ("to coo") is used by Saltykov in Gospoda Tashkenttsy ("Gentlemen of Tashkent," 1875). The cooing birds (vorkuyushchie ptitsy) are golubi (doves).
 
In November 1871, as he [Daniel Veen, Demon's cousin] was in the act of making his evening plans with the same smelly but nice cicerone in a café-au-lait suit whom he had hired already twice at the same Genoese hotel, an aerocable from Marina (forwarded with a whole week's delay via his Manhattan office which had filed it away through a new girl's oversight in a dove hole marked RE AMOR) arrived on a silver salver telling him she would marry him upon his return to America. (1.1)
 
Alexey Sklyarenko
Google Search
the archive
Contact
the Editors
NOJ Zembla Nabokv-L
Policies
Subscription options AdaOnline NSJ Ada Annotations L-Soft Search the archive VN Bibliography Blog

All private editorial communications are read by both co-editors.