Annotations by Alexey Sklyarenko

Description

Please read Alexey Sklyarenko's annotations on Pale FireAda and other Nabokov works here.

Greg's sob of admiration, Cuba & Hecuba in Ada

Submitted by Alexey Sklyarenko on Wed, 08/10/2022 - 10:22

When Ada recites her revised monologue of Shakespeare’s King Lear, Greg Erminin exclaims ‘Oh, that’s good:’

 

‘Et pourtant,’ said the sound-sensitive governess, wincing, ‘I read to her twice Ségur’s adaptation in fable form of Shakespeare’s play about the wicked usurer.’

‘She also knows my revised monologue of his mad king,’ said Ada:

 

air, water, fire & poor grubs in Ada

Submitted by Alexey Sklyarenko on Tue, 08/09/2022 - 20:10

In VN’s novel Ada (1969) the element that destroys Demon Veen (Van’s and Ada’s father who perishes in a mysterious airplane disaster above the Pacific) is air:

 

Numbers and rows and series — the nightmare and malediction harrowing pure thought and pure time — seemed bent on mechanizing his mind. Three elements, fire, water, and air, destroyed, in that sequence, Marina, Lucette, and Demon. Terra waited. (3.1)

 

Paar of Chose & Zapater of Aardvark in Ada

Submitted by Alexey Sklyarenko on Mon, 08/08/2022 - 05:41

Describing the difference between Terra and Antiterra (aka Demonia, Earth’s twin planet on which Ada is set), Van Veen (the narrator and main character in VN’s novel Ada, 1969) mentions the deepest thinkers, the purest philosophers, Paar of Chose and Zapater of Aardvark:

 

cheating poor grubs & popping the hymen in Ada

Submitted by Alexey Sklyarenko on Fri, 08/05/2022 - 20:06

According to Ada, at Marina’s funeral Demon Veen (in VN’s novel Ada, 1969, Van’s and Ada’s father) told her that he would not cheat the poor grubs:

 

‘My upper-lip space feels indecently naked.’ (He had shaved his mustache off with howls of pain in her presence). ‘And I cannot keep sucking in my belly all the time.’

encore un petit enfantôme & phantom orchid in Ada

Submitted by Alexey Sklyarenko on Wed, 08/03/2022 - 10:09

After Van Veen (the narrator and main character in VN’s novel Ada, 1969) possessed her for the first time, Cordula de Prey mentions un petit enfantôme:

 

Cordula told Edmond: ‘Arrêtez près de what’s-it-called, yes, Albion, le store pour messieurs, in Luga’; and as peeved Van remonstrated: ‘You can’t go back to civilization in pajamas,’ she said firmly. ‘I shall buy you some clothes, while Edmond has a mug of coffee.’