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Vladimir Nabokov Quotes (137 Quotes)


  • If you want to make a movie out of my book, have one of these faces gently melt into my own, while I look.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • We loved each other with a premature love, marked by a fierceness that so often destroys adult lives.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • My little cup brims with tiddles.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • Feeling a bit nervous, as most people do at the prospect of seeing a doctor, I thought I would buy on my way to him something soothing to prevent an accelerated pulse from misleading credulous science.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Pale Fire")

  • Solitude was corrupting me. I needed company and care.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")


  • I'm thinking of aurochs and angels, the secret of durable pigments, prophetic sonnets, the refuge of art, And this is the only immortality that you and I may share, my Lolita.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • While a few pertinent points have to be marked, the general impression I desire to convey is of a side door crashing open in life's full flight, and a rush of roaring black time drowning with its whipping wind the cry of lone disaster.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • My only grudge against nature was that I could not turn my Lolita inside out and apply voracious lips to her young matrix, her unknown heart, her nacreous liver, the sea-grapes of her lungs, her comely twin kidneys.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • I cannot disobey something which I do not know and the reality of which I have the right to deny.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Pale Fire")

  • I felt my life needed a shake-up.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • 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, "Lolita")

  • Imagine me; I shall not exist if you do not imagine me; try to discern the doe in me, trembling in the forest of my own iniquity; let's even smile a little. After all, there is no harm in smiling.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • Who can say what heartbreaks are caused in a dog by our discontinuing a romp?
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • No writer in a free country should be expected to bother about the exact demarcation between the sensuous and the sensual; this is preposterous; I can only admire but cannot emulate the accuracy of judgment of those who pose the fair young mammals photographed in magazines where the general neckline is just low enough to provoke a past master's chuckle and just high enough not to make a postmaster frown.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Lolita")

  • I notice a whiff of Swift in some of my notes. I too am a desponder in my nature, an uneasy, peevish, and suspicious man, although I have my moments of volatility and fou rire.
    (Vladimir Nabokov, "Pale Fire")