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Top 500 Vladimir Nabokov Quotes (2023 Update)
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Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “To be quite candid – and what I am going to say now is something I have never said before, and I hope that it provokes a salutary chill – I know more than I can express in words, and the little I can express would not have been expressed, had I not known more.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “What further concentration is needed, what added intensity must one’s gaze attain, for the brain to enslave the visual image of a person?”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Whatever his secret was, I have learnt one secret too, and namely: that the soul is but a manner of being – not a constant state – that any soul may be yours, if you find and follow its undulations. The hereafter may be the full ability of consciously living in any chosen soul, in any number of souls, all of them unconscious of their interchangeable burden.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “A red backless slipper slowly slid off her foot... and Franz, bending down after it, plunged softly into dark slumber.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Oh no, I do not gloat over my own person, I do not get all hot wrestling with my soul in a darkened room; I have no desires, save the desire to express myself – in defiance of all the world’s muteness.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “I was always lonely and I am lonely still.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “But then what does it matter whence comes the gentle nudge that jars the soul into motion and sets it rolling, doomed never again to stop?”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “To the sound of this voice, to the music of the chessboard’s evil lure, Luzhin recalled, with the exquisite, moist melancholy peculiar to recollections of love, a thousand games that he had played in the past... There were combinations, pure and harmonious, where thought ascended marble stairs to victory; there were tender stirrings in one corner of the board, and a passionate explosion, and the fanfare of the Queen going to its sacrificial doom.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “The elms and the poplars were turning their ruffled backs to a sudden onslaught of wind, and a black thunderhead loomed above Ramsdale’s white church tower when I looked around me for the last time.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “I am quite willing to admit that they are also a deception but right now I believe in them so much that I infect them with truth.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Since I sometimes won the race between my fancy and nature’s reality – the deception was bearable.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “He began with the day’s copy of The New York Times. His lips moving like wrestling worms, he read about all kinds of things. Hrushchov.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “I put everything into my poetry that I should have put into my life, and now it’s too late for me to start all over again. The only thought that occurs to me at the moment is that in the final reckoning it’s better to have been sanguine by temperament, a man of action, and if you must get drunk do it properly and smash the place up.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Tropes are the dreams of speech.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Memory overshadows the present and dims the future “into something thicker than its usual pea soup.””
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “You must be careful. There are things that should never be given up. You must persevere.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Ah, gentle drivers gliding through summer’s black nights, what frolics, what twists of lust, you might see from your impeccable highways if Kumfy Kabins were suddenly drained of their pigments and became as transparent as boxes of glass!”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “No wonder tobacco shops have a predilection for corners, for.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Van was positive that not once during a month of love-making had he failed to take all necessary precautions, sometimes rather bizarre, but incontestably trustworthy, and had lately acquired a sheath-like contraceptive device that in Ladore county only barbershops, for some odd but ancient reason, were allowed to sell.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “An author’s fondest dream is to turn the reader into a spectator; is this ever attained?”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “She had spent all her life in feeling miserable; this misery was her native element; its fluctuations, its varying depths, alone save her the impression of moving and living. What bothers me is that a sense of misery, and nothing else, is not enough to make a permanent soul. My enormous and morose Mademoiselle is all right on earth but impossible in eternity.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “One thing should be established once for all, indefeasibly. I loved, love, and shall love only you. I implore you and love you with everlasting pain and passion, my darling.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Let me add, just in case, that experts on literary “schools” should wisely refrain this time from casually dragging in “the influence of German Impressionists”: I do not know German and have never read the Impressionists – whoever they are.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Now the colored pencils in more detail.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “To think that between a Hamburger and a Humburger, she would – invariably, with icy precision – plump for the former.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “From early childhood his mother had taught him that to discuss in public a profound emotional experience-which, in the open air, immediately evanesces and fades, and, oddly, becomes similar to an analogous experience of one’s interlocutor-was not only vulgar, but also a sin against sentiment.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “The heating system was a farce, depending as it did on registers in the floor wherefrom the tepid exhalations of a throbbing and groaning basement furnace were transmitted to the rooms with the faintness of a moribund’s last breath.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “It isn’t possible. I cannot imagine it. Come on over here, you foolish little doe, and tell me on what day I shall die.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “One of the functions of all my novels is to prove that the novel in general does not exist.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “The spiritual and the physical had been blended in us with a perfection that must remain incomprehensible to the matter-of-fact, crude, standard-brained youngsters of today. Long after her death I felt her thoughts floating through mine. Long before we met we had had the same dreams. We compared notes. We found strange affinities.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “The general impression is that fifteen year-old Dolly remains morbidly uninterested in sexual matters, or to be exact, represses her curiosity in order to save her ignorance and self-dignity.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “I think it is all a matter of love...”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Discussion in class, which means letting twenty young blockheads and two cocky neurotics discuss something that neither their teacher nor they know.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Palm trees are all right only in mirages.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “The act of vividly recalling a patch of the past is something that I seem to have been performing with the utmost zest all my life, and I have reason to believe that this almost pathological keenness of the retrospective faculty is a hereditary trait.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “I cannot conceive how anybody in his right mind should go to a psychoanalyst.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Dimly, I recall running up to his chair to show him a pretty pebble, which he slowly examined and then slowly put into his mouth.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “For some reason, I kept seeing it – it trembled and silkily glowed on my damp retina – a radiant child of twelve, sitting on a threshold, “pinging” pebbles at an empty can.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “He was powerless because he had no precise desire, and this tortured him because he was vainly seeking something to desire. He could not even make himself stretch out his hand to switch on the light. The simple transition from intention to action seemed an unimaginable miracle.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “I was proceeding slowly one afternoon through torrents of rain and kept seeing that red ghost swimming and shivering with lust in my mirror, when presently the deluge dwindled to a patter, and then was suspended altogether.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “I moved on, and at noon, dragging through some village, I decided to halt, since even at such.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “And in the meantime the rain had become a voluptuous shower.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Their first free and frantic caresses had been preceded by a brief period of strange craftiness, of cringing stealth.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “He was powerless because he had no precise desire, and this tortured him because he was vainly seeking something to desire.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “The whole history of literary fiction as an evolutionary process may be said to be a gradual probing of deeper and deeper layers of life.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “I was also supposed to quiz my various companions on a number of important matters such as nostalgia, fear of unknown animals, food fantasies, nocturnal emissions, hobbies, choice of radio program, changes in out look and so forth.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “Yes, I need you, my fairy-tale. Because you are the only person I can talk with about the shade of a cloud, about the song of a thought – and about how, when I went out to work today and looked a tall sunflower in the face, it smiled at me with all of its seeds.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “To the Winds, Victor was a problem child insofar as he refused to be one.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “He was afraid of touching his own wrist. He never attempted to sleep on his left side, even in those dismal hours of the night when the insomniac longs for a third side after trying the two he has.”
Vladimir Nabokov Quote: “With the ebb of lust, an ashen sense of awfulness, abetted by the realistic drabness of a grey neuralgic day, crept over me and hummed within my temples.”
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