NABOKV-L post 0020738, Fri, 17 Sep 2010 13:16:28 +0400

Re: Botkin and Gogol
Dear Abdellah,

It seems that VN never even heard of Machado, or did he?
Btw., the title of V. Botkin's book, "Letters about Spain", also brings to mind the title of Gogol's last published work, "Vybrannye mesta iz perepiski s druz'yami" ("The Chosen Excerpts from the Correspondence with Friends", 1847).

To return to Chekhov's friend Suvorin, the editor of the Novoe Vremya newspaper: I notice that his name differs only in two vowels and the accent from Severin, the name of the hero of Sacher-Masoch's Venus in Furs. The name of the novel's central female character, Wanda von Dunajew, reminds one of Ada's schoolmate Vanda Broom (who has different sexual tastes, though). Wanda's "fluvial" family name comes from Dunay, Russian name of the Danube. Humbert's father, too, had a dash of the Danube in his veins.
On the other hand, one remembers Suvorov, the Russian general who took Izmail, the Turkish fortress in the estuary of the Danube.

Alexey Sklyarenko

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