NABOKV-L post 0001223, Fri, 16 Aug 1996 13:27:24 -0700

Re: Rilke (fwd)
From: Charles Nicol <>

Many years ago, while I was editor of the "Annotations & Queries"
section of the *Nabokovian*, somebody proposed this same connection
(that the ape drawing the bars of his cage story was connected to
Rilke's Panther poem). I did not print it, precisely because the
proposer could not find any evidence that Nabokov knew the poem.
My rules may have been too strict. In any case, with that lurking
somewhere in my head, I have been on the lookout for a connection
ever since. I think that there is one mention of Rilke in *Ada*, but
not of that poem. On the other hand, somebody like George Steiner
casually mentioned in the *New Yorker* a few years ago that everybody
in Berlin in the 1920s knew that poem--but of course his everybody
might not have been Nabokov's everybody.