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Half height banner for Maria Merian exhibition, showing a butterfly
This exhibition is in the past. View our current exhibitions.

Branch of Pomegranate with Lanternfly and Cicada


RCIN 921149

Merian believed, on local testimony, that the Lanternfly (Fulgora laternaria) and Cicada (Fidicina mannifera) were different stages of the same creature but they are in fact entirely distinct animals. The example at the bottom of the sheet is a fabrication, which has the body of a Cicada and the head of a Lanternfly. It is not known where Merian acquired this, but she thought it was an insect in the middle of metamorphosis.

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