Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0003289, Mon, 10 Aug 1998 11:56:34 -0700

Re: Nabokov's story "Krasavitsa" [A Russian Beauty] (fwd)
To: Vladimir Nabokov Forum <NABOKV-L@UCSBVM.UCSB.EDU>
Subject: Re: Nabokov's story "Krasavitsa" [A Russian Beauty] (fwd)

From: "Malcolm R. Reynolds" <Reynoldsm001@hawaii.rr.com>

Could the fairy tale at the end of "A Russian Beauty" be a Nabokovian
invention? In _Lolita_ just before HH and Lo settle in Beardsley, HH is
thinking about going through a legal adoption, but he decides not to
tempt McFate:

"What stopped me was the awful feeling that if I meddled with fate in
any way and tried to rationalize her fantastic gift, that gift would be
snatched away like that palace on the mountain top in the Oriental tale
which vanished whenever a prospective owner asked its custodian how come
a strip of sunset sky was clearly visible from afar between black rock
and foundation."

There may be some Orientalist out there who can nail this tale exactly,
and then again---??