Title

The Ecology of the Raupen Books

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

5-2015

Department

Biology

Abstract

[…] I consider it necessary to express much in few words: in general, all caterpillars, as long as the insects have mated beforehand, emerge from their eggs []” (from the preface of Der Raupen wunderbare Verwandelung und sonderbare Blumen–nahrung, Maria Sibylla Merian, 1679).

Published in a period when insects were thought to generate spontaneously, this bold statement from the 32-year-old Merian was reinforced by her carefully engraved image of a silkworm moth laying eggs. [excerpt]

Comments

This essay is available from the Maria Sibylla Merian Society's website at: http://www.themariasibyllameriansociety.humanities.uva.nl/research/essays-symposium-2014/essay-kay-etheridge/