NABOKV-L post 0001408, Mon, 4 Nov 1996 10:51:30 -0800

Re: Homosexuals in VN (fwd)
---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tue, 5 Nov 1996 01:28:21 -0700
From: Bennett Lerner <>

At 08:47 AM 11/4/96 -0800, you wrote:
>From: Andy Shaindlin <>
> RE>Homosexuals in VN (fwd) 11/4/96
>Bennett in Thailand mentions the characteristics of lesbians enumerated in
>ADA. Here it is:
>"He [Van] had read somewhere (we might recall the precise title if we tried,
>not Tiltil, that's in Blue Beard...) that a man can recognize a Lesbian,
>young and alone (because a tailored old pair can fool no one), by a
>combination of three characteristics: slightly trembling hands, a cold-in-the
>head voice, and that skidding-in-panic of the eyes if you happen to scan with
>obvious appraisal such charms as the occasion might force her to show (lovely
>shoulders, for instance)."
> ADA (pp.164-5, Vintage paper)
>He then goes on to explain that Cordula had none of the three
>"characteristics," and that the quote is from 'Mytilene, petit isle' by Louis
>Pierre. Is there any such work?? As for the characteristics, they describe
>one of my friends too, but she's not a 'lezbianochka.' I think the
>description by VN is deliberately obtuse
>Andy Shiandlin
>Just off the top, I think the reference must be to "Chansons de Bilitis" by
Pierre Louys, some of which are in imitation of Sappho, and some of which
were set to music by Debussy. Bennett