A Guide to Nabokov’s Butterflies and Moths Except as otherwise noted, all butterfly illustrations are by William H. Howe, who generously allowed them to be reproduced here.
Except as otherwise noted, all butterfly illustrations are by William H. Howe, who generously allowed them to be reproduced here.
Butterflies and moths bearing Nabokov's name
Common names(Accents added only to facilitate pronunciation)
left, male; right, female
Karner Blue (Nabokov’s own common name): see under Lycáeides melíssa samuélis NABOKOV 1943 [Lycáenidae].
left, male; right, female
Nabokov’s Blue1 (Brown 1955): see under Lycáeides ídas sublívens NABOKOV 1949 [Lycáenidae]. It was named thus by F. Martin Brown, Donald Eff and Bernard Rotger in Colorado Butterflies (Denver, Colorado), 3, 1955, p. 161. The short article begins: ”In recent years Nabokov made a detailed study of the orange-margined Blues in North America. This has resulted in a considerable change in the nomenclature of the group and the discovery that two species are involved, argyrognomon [: ídas] BERGSTRAESSER and melissa EDWARDS.” There are a number of misspellings: Nebokov, sublivent, puseudosamuelis, pseudosameulis. Brown’s suggestion did not catch on; the common name that prevailed is Dark Blue. Indeed, it would be awkward to have two Nabokov’s Blues.
Nabokov’s Blue2 (Opler/Krizek 1984): see under Lycáeides ídas nabokóvi MASTERS 1972 [Lycáenidae].
Nabokov’s Brown (Tilden/Smith 1986): see under Cyllópsis pyrácmon nabokóvi MILLER 1974 [Satýridae].
Nabokov’s Fritillary (Tilden/Smith 1986): see under Clossiána (: Bolória) fréija nabokóvi STALLINGS & TURNER 1947 [Nymphálidae].
Nabokov’s Pug (no particular author of the common name): see under Eupithécia nabokóvi McDunnough 1945 [Geométridae].
Nabokov’s Satyr (Pyle 1981): Cyllópsis pyrácmon BUTLER 1866 [Satýridae]. The common name ‘Nabokov’s Satyr’ was bestowed on this Nearctic satyrid by Robert M. Pyle in his 1981 Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Butterflies: ”The North American race of this species was named in honor of the novelist Vladimir Nabokov, who studied the satyrs of the genus Cyllópsis.” Pyle describes the butterfly thus: ”Above, dull brown with reddish cast, especially along veins; small dark marks on outer hindwing margin. Grayish tan below; hindwing has black marginal marks with silver centers, more silver spots, and a silver line around hindwing margin, lined with reddish-brown…” It ranges in North America from southern Arizona and New Mexico to Guatemala.
left, female; right, male
Nabokov’s Wood Nymph (no particular author of the common name): see under Cyllópsis pertepída dorothéa NABOKOV 1942 [Satýridae].
BUTTERFLIES NAMED BY NABOKOV
BUTTERFLIES NAMED FOR NABOKOV
BUTTERFLIES WITH 'NABOKOVIAN' NAMES
NABOKOV ON BUTTERFLIES
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