© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.



by Vladimir Nabokov

Lolita Book 2, Chapter 14 Summary

  • Lolita is also taking piano lessons with Miss Emperor. Unfortunately, she has not been attending them – which Humbert only discovers when the teacher calls after several weeks' absence. Humbert saves face by remaining calm. When confronted, Lolita lies by saying that she has been rehearsing the play in the park with Mona. Mona covers for her, much to Humbert's irritation.
  • When Humbert returns to discuss the lie with Lolita, he cannot help but notice how much she has changed over the past two years. She has, since their affair began, developed poor skin and a general physical filth that is not at all nymphet-like. Her body is more muscular and mature and her make-up looks tawdry.
  • Humbert threatens to pull Lolita out of Beardsley if she continues lying. The fight turns physical and ugly, with Lolita accusing Humbert of committing all manner of sordid and murderous acts, some of which are true.
  • When a neighbor calls to complain about the shouting, Lolita slips out of the house. A frantic Humbert flies down the street and finds Lolita in a telephone booth talking on the phone.
  • Lolita confesses that she hates Beardsley and wants to leave – but she gets to decide where they go. When he agrees, they reconcile by going home to have sex because Lolita feels "romantic" (2.14.32).

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...