Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Nabokov's Nymphets and Lolitas & D.H. Lawrence's Chits

There are a number of synonyms that are used for nymphets. For example, the terms lolitas and maidens are synonymous. D.H. Lawrence related an additional synonym in DRUNK.

DRUNK by D.H. Lawrence from Complete Poems

The enormous cliff of horse-chestnut trees
         Has poised on each of its ledges
An erect small girl looking down at me;
White-nightgowned little chits at me I see
        And they peep at me over the edges
Of the leaves as though they would leap, should I call
        Them down to my arms:
---But, child, you're too small for me; too small
Your little charms!---

The Merriam Webster dictionary defines chit as a pert young woman. The Free Dictionary defines chit as a saucy girl or young woman. And defines pert as boldly forward in speech or behavior; impertinent; saucy. Therefore, a chit could be referred to as a boldly forward girl/young woman.

Some nymphets aren't boldly forward. For example, Katya Spivak in Joyce Carol Oates'  A Fair Maiden and Belinda in Anne Rice's Belinda weren't particularly aggressive nymphets. However, a number of nymphets are chits like Sue Lyons' character in The Night of the Iguana (1964) and the nymphets in Don't Deliver Us from Evil (1971) [French: Mais ne nous délivrez pas du mal].

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