Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0005577, Wed, 1 Nov 2000 11:07:59 -0800

The paragrah below is from ADA, II, 7

Marco d'Andrea, Domenico Benci, and Giovanni de Brina were Vasari's
assistants in the decoration of the Quartiere degli Elementi of Florence's
(Firenze's) Palazzo Vecchio.


1. Who is the unnamed painter identified by Lucette?
2. Can any one direct me to an image of the insects in question?
3. What is the significance of that place/date "near Florence" & May 1547.
It may be simply that Peacock moths emerge in May in that area but perhaps
some specific event is referred to?)

"Two huge common Peacock moths, still connected. Grooms and gardeners
Ada that species every blessed year; which, in a way, reminds us of you,
sweet Marco d'Andrea, or you, red-haired Domenico Benci, or you, dark and
broody Giovanni del Brina (who thought they were bats) or the one I dare not
mention (because it is Lucette's scholarly contribution -so easily botched
after the scholar's death) who likewise might have picked up, at the foot of
an orchard wall, not overhung with not-yet-imported wisteria (her
half-sister's addition), on a May morning in 1542, near Florence, a pair of
the Pear Peacock in copula, the male with the feathery antennae, the female
with the plain threads, to depict them faithfully (among wretched,
unvisualized insects) on one side of a fenestral niche in the so-called
"Elements Room" of the Palazzo Vecchio."
All useful responses will be credited in my publication.