NABOKV-L post 0022794, Sat, 5 May 2012 07:41:58 -0700

Subject
down Lemur Lane from Fulmerford to Kalmakov
Date
Body
On May 4, 2012, at 6:49 PM, Jansy wrote: Your alliterative games are
great fun.

Dear Jansy,

But my "games" are not alliterative at all! Fulmerford = Dr Lemuroff
is an anagramatic play (n.b. to our anagrams master, this is a
"krugliy" anagram, if I may put it that way). The rest of the path
down Lemur Lane, to make an alliterative detour, is - I don't exactly
know what it is - a series of associations of submarine and other
lemurian associations. The association of occult ideas, leading
betweem Lemuria and Thule, have not been explored yet so far as I know
in the Nabokovian context. The submarine associations aren't
necessarily particular to our VN - but perhaps they are, now that I
think of Marina and sub-Marine motifs in Ada ...

Well, Ada's not my girl, as you may recall! But what, I wonder, can
the internal parasite resembling the written word 'deified' refer to?
You also bring up Sebastian Knight. I haven't read him since high
school - let me count the decades! so I can't comment. But the
Lehmann's apparently belongs in the Lemurian-Lemansian mix. And
Priscilla Meyer's link between Lehmann's and occultism is surely an
important key. Throw in her "pale kings, princes and pale warriors"
and you have another lane to travel - a fire road perhaps?

But to return to Kalmakov, there is only one person curled up in the
painting. If he is Sadko, a merchant, he is perhaps wearing some kind
of musulman costume - or could he have wandered in from the Arabian
Nights? - although Sadko was from Novgorod (I've googled a bit). I
plan to take some time to visit Sadko in Novgorod soon, but for now
I'll just close with a quote I found on the net:


«The three songs about Sadko are remarkable because they
represent the only Russian epic in which the main character makes a
journey to the otherworld. They also combine elements of everyday
life, customs, and institutions in Novgorod from the twelfth through
the fifteenth centuries with folk beliefs and with motifs from magic
tales. ...»


James Bailey

Thanks for a pleasant journey with a pleasant "sputnitsa" (fellow
traveler of the feminine persuasion),
Carolyn

.....................................................................................................................................................................................

* Priscilla Meyer in "Life as Annotation: Sebastian Knight, Nathaniel
Hawthorne, Vladimir Nabokov" explains that "Sebastian becomes
particularly susceptible to faery charms, as well as to Keats’ pale
kings, Princes and pale warriors, once he is diagnosed with Lehmann’s
disease. This medically non-existent heart disease appears to be named
for Alfred Georg Ludvig Lehmann (1858-1921), a Danish psychologist at
Copenhagen University who wrote a treatise on the occult, entitled
Aberglaube und Zauberei (Superstition and Magic, 1908), in which he
discusses magic, witchcraft, dreams, spiritualism and colored hearing. "
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