Even the governor of France was not Charlie Chose, the suave nephew of Lord Goal, but a bad-tempered French general. (5.5)
Chose is Van's English University (1.28 et passim). In "The University Poem" (1927) VN mentions Charlie Chaplin:
За этой площадью щербатой
кинематограф, и туда-то
по вечерам мы в глубину
туманной дали заходили,--
где мчались кони в клубах пыли
по световому полотну,
волшебно зрителя волнуя;
где силуэтом поцелуя
всё завершалось в должный срок;
где добродетельный урок
всегда в трагедию был вкраплен;
где семенил, носками врозь,
смешной и трогательный Чаплин;
где и зевать нам довелось.
Behind this square’s uneven outlines
there is a cinema, and thither
into the foggy depths we wandered,
where steeds midst swirls of dust rushed past
across the canvas screen of light,
the viewer magically alarming,
where, with a kiss’s silhouette,
all ended at the proper time;
where tragedy was always sprinkled
with a beneficial lesson;
where droll and touching Charlie Chaplin
came mincing with his toes thrust out,
where, now and then, we chanced to yawn.
In "The University Poem" (written in the reversed Onegin stanza) VN (who played a goalie for his colledge team) describes a football match and mentions a goal:
Но вот однажды, помню живо,
в начале марта, в день дождливый,
мы на футбольном были с ней
соревнованьи. Понемногу
росла толпа, -- отдавит ногу,
пихнёт в плечо, -- и всё тесней
многоголовое кишенье.
С самим собою в соглашенье
я молчаливое вошёл:
как только грянет первый гол,
я трону руку Виолеты.
Меж тем, в короткие портки,
в фуфайки пёстрые одеты, --
уж побежали игроки.

Обычный зритель: из-под кепки
губа брезгливая и крепкий
дымок Виргинии. Но вдруг
разжал он губы, трубку вынул,
ещё минута -- рот разинул,
ещё -- и воет. Сотни рук
взвились, победу понукая:
игрок искусный, мяч толкая,
вдоль поля ласточкой стрельнул, --
навстречу двое, -- он вильнул,
прорвался, -- чистая работа, --
и на бегу издалека
дублёный мяч кладет в ворота
ударом меткого носка.
And then, one time – I recall clearly –,
in early March, in rainy weather,
it happened that the two of us
went to a soccer game together.
And, gradually, the crowd increased;
someone would crush my foot
or shove my shoulder; ever tighter
grew the many-headed roiling.
I entered into an unspoken resolution;
as soon as one goal shook the stands,
I would caress my Violet’s hand.
Meanwhile in athletic shorts,
and in their motley jerseys clad,
the opposing players advanced.
Your average fan: under his cap
a squeamish lip and a strong whiff
of Virginia smoke. But now,
his lips unclench, his pipe’s withdrawn;
another minute, mouth’s agape;
another and he is howling. Hands
by the hundreds victory inciting:
an artful player propels the ball,
darts like a swallow the field’s full length,
two men rush him, he swerves, he breaks through –
neat piece of work – and, on the run,
nets the tanned ball from afar
with a shot from his well-practiced toe.
The hero's girlfriend is a namesake of Violet Knox, old Van's pretty English typist. Milord Goal (Charlie Chose's uncle) was a governor of Lute (as Paris is also known on Antiterra). VN is the author of Parizhskaya poema ("The Paris Poem," 1943). In the unfinished Canto Ten of EO Pushkin mentions Albion (England), Paris and uses the gallicism siloyu veshchey (par la force des choses):
Но бог помог - стал ропот ниже,
И скоро, силою вещей,
Мы очутилися в Париже,
А русский царь главой царей.
Моря достались Альбиону...
But [God?] helped - lower grew the murmur
and, by the force of circumstances, soon
we found ourselves in Paris,
and the Russian tsar was the head of kings.
The seas to Albion were apportioned...
In Ada Van uses the phrase la force des choses in a different context:
In the next three stills la force des choses ('the fever of intercourse') had sufficiently disturbed the lush herbage to allow one to distinguish the details of a tangled composition consisting of clumsy Romany clips and illegal nelsons. (2.7)
Tumannaya dal' (the foggy depth) of a cinema in "The University Poem" seems to hint at tumannaya dal' (the misty distance) that Lenski sang in EO:
Он пел разлуку и печаль,
и нечто, и туманну даль
He sang parting and sadness,
and something, and the misty distance (Two: X: 7-8).
In "The University Poem" Pushkin and Dal' (Dahl in Russian spelling) are mentioned:
Там мяса розовые глыбы;
сырая вонь блестящей рыбы;
ножи; кастрюли; пиджаки
из гардеробов безымянных;
отдельно, в положеньях странных
кривые книжные лотки
застыли, ждут, как будто спрятав
тьму алхимических трактатов;
однажды эту дребедень
перебирая, -- в зимний день,
когда, изгнанника печаля,
шёл снег, как в русском городке, --
нашёл я Пушкина и Даля
на заколдованном лотке.

There is meat in hunks all pink;
the shiny fishes’ uncooked stink;
and knives and pots; and also jackets
from wardrobes that shall remain nameless;
and, separate, in strange positions,
some crooked stands where they sold books
freeze motionless, as if concealing
some arcane alchemistic treatise;
one time I happened through this rubbish
to rummage, on a winter day,
when, adding to an exile’s sadness,
it snowed, as in a Russian town –
I found some works by Pushkin, and
some Dahl upon a magic counter.
According to Pushkin (EO, One: V: 1-2),
Мы все учились понемногу
Чему-нибудь и как-нибудь
All of us had a bit of schooling
in something and somehow.
In their accurate prose translation of EO Turgenev and Viardot render these lines: Nous avons tous, par petites bribes, appris fort peu de choses et fort mal. Fleurs du mal ("Flowers of Evil") is a book of poetry by Charles Baudelaire. 'Quelques Fleurs' is Aqua's favorite talc powder (1.3). The name of Van's University seems to hint at the French stock phrase quelque chose (something).
'You shall not slaughter him,' said Ada. 'He [Kim Beauharnais, the kitchen boy and photographer at Ardis whom Ada bribed to set the barn on fire and who spied on Van and Ada] is subnormal, he is, perhaps, blackmailerish, but in his sordidity, there is an istoshnïy ston ('visceral moan') of crippled art. Furthermore, this page is the only really naughty one. And let's not forget that a copperhead of eight was also ambushed in the brush'.
'Art my foute. This is the hearse of ars, a toilet roll of the Carte du Tendre! I'm sorry you showed it to me. That ape has vulgarized our own mind-pictures. I will either horsewhip his eyes out or redeem our childhood by making a book of it: Ardis, a family chronicle.' (2.7)

Russian for "art" is iskusstvo, nauka means "science." What the hero of Pushkin's Eugene Onegin knew more firmly than all the arts (tvyorzhe vsekh nauk) is nauka strasti nezhnoy (the art of soft passion) which Naso sang:
Всего, что знал ещё Евгений,
Пересказать мне недосуг;
Но в чём он истинный был гений,
Что знал он твёрже всех наук,
Что было для него измлада
И труд, и мука, и отрада,
Что занимало целый день
Его тоскующую лень,—
Была наука страсти нежной,
Которую воспел Назон,
За что страдальцем кончил он
Свой век блестящий и мятежный
В Молдавии, в глуши степей,
Вдали Италии своей.
All Eugene knew besides
I have no leisure to recount;
but where he was a veritable genius,
what he more firmly knew than all the arts,
what since his prime had been to him
toil, anguish, joy,
what occupied the livelong day
his fretting indolence -
was the art of soft passion
which Naso sang,
wherefore a sufferer he ended
his brilliant and tumultous span
in Moldavia, in the wild depth of steppes,
far from his Italy. (One: VIII)
Nauka usually means "knowledge," "learning," "science," but here the title of Ovid's work [Ars Amatoria] gives the translator his cue. (EO Commentary, vol. II, p. 59)
In Arap Petra Velikogo ("The Blackamoor of Peter the Great," 1828) Pushkin uses nauka in a different sense:
Следовать за мыслями великого человека есть наука самая занимательная.
To follow the thoughts of a great man is a most entertaining study. (chapter III)
arap = para = Paar
arap - blackamoor
para - pair
Paar - old Paar of Chose, the philosopher at Van's University (1.3, 3.4)
Old Paar of Chose brings to mind Hamlet's words in Shakespeare's play:
A little month or ere those shoes were old
With which she followed my poor father's body
Like Niobe all tears, why she, even she—
O God, a beast that wants discourse of reason
Would have mourned longer!—married with my uncle,
My father’s brother, but no more like my father
Than I to Hercules, within a month,
Ere yet the salt of most unrighteous tears
Had left the flushing in her gallèd eyes,
She married. (1.2. 147-158)
Gamlet (Hamlet in Russian spelling) is a half-Russian village near Ardis:
They bounced on the cobblestones of Gamlet, a half-Russian village, and the chauffeur waved again, this time to a boy in a cherry tree. (1.5)
In the mournful dullness of unconsummated desire he watched a row of izbas straggle by as the calèche drove through Gamlet, a hamlet. (1.13).
In EO Lenski is Onegin's and the Larins' "half-Russian neighbor." Like Hamlet (a former Wittenberg student), Lenski studied in Germany (at Goettingen). At the grave of Tatiana's and Olga's father Lenski quotes Hamlet:
"Poor Yorick!"* mournfully he uttered,
"in his arms he hath borne me." (Two: XXXVII: 6-7).
Pushkin's note 16: Hamlet's exclamaition over the skull of the fool (see Shakespeare and Sterne).
Laurence Sterne is the author of A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy (1768). According to Ada, she is sentimental:
'I am sentimental,' she said. 'I could dissect a koala but not its baby. I like the words damozel, eglantine, elegant. I love when you kiss my elongated white hand.' (1.17)
Trianon + Serenity + advokat + rab + Lenin = Trinity + sever + Danton + koala + Arbenin
Goal + nauka + ad/da = Kalugano + Ada
Trianon - le Grand Trianon and le Petit Trianon in Versailles (see Pushkin's poem "To a Grandee," 1830) 
Serenity - green Serenity Court at Chose
advokat - lawyer (Van's lawyer Gromwell is a nephew of the great Grombchevski, 2.2; in his memoirs "What my Eyes Saw," 1921, the famous lawyer Karabchevski mentions VN's father)
rab - slave
- North (harmful to Pushkin: EO, One: II: 14) 
Arbenin - the main character in Lermontov's play in verse Maskarad ("The Masked Ball," 1836)
ad - hell
da - yes
Kalugano - the city where the composer Philip Rack (Lucette's music teacher) lives and where Van fights a pistol duel with Captain Tapper
'I'll find a mouche (patch) to conceal it,' she said, returning to the leering caruncula in the unreticent reticulation. 'By the way, you have quite a collection of black masks in your dresser.'
'For masked balls (bals-masqués),' murmured Van. (2.7)
"The University Poem" ends in a masked ball. Mascodagama (a play on Vasco da Gama) is Van's stage name:
On February 5, 1887, an unsigned editorial in The Ranter (the usually so sarcastic and captious Chose weekly) described Mascodagama's performance as 'the most imaginative and singular stunt ever offered to a jaded music-hall public...'
Mascodagama's fame reached inevitably the backwoods of America: a photograph of him, masked, it is true, but unable to mislead a fond relative or faithful retainer, was reproduced by the Ladore, Ladoga, Laguna, Lugano and Luga papers in the first week of 1888; but the accompanying reportage was not. (1.30)
As Mascodagama Van dances a tango on his hands. After a pistol duel with Captain Tapper, of Wild Violet Lodge (1.42), Van can not walk on his hands anymore: 
A comparison piece: Ada's very-much-exposed white thighs (her birthday skirt had got entangled with twigs and leaves) straddling a black limb of the tree of Eden. Thereafter: several shots of the 1884 picnic, such as Ada and Grace dancing a Lyaskan fling and reversed Van nibbling at pine starworts (conjectural identification).
'That's finished,' said Van, 'a precious sinistral sinew has stopped functioning. I can still fence and deliver a fine punch but hand-walking is out. You shall not sniffle, Ada. Ada is not going to sniffle and wail. King Wing says that the great Vekchelo turned back into an ordinary chelovek at the age I'm now, so everything is perfectly normal. (2.7)
At Cambridge VN was a student of the Trinity Colledge.
Nauka's stock rhymes are skuka (boredom; EO, One: I: 5-6), muka (torment; torture) and shtuka (item; piece; thing; trick). Iskusstvo rhymes with chuvstvo (sense; feeling; EO, Two: IX: 9-12).
Alexey Sklyarenko
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