Merian, Maria Sibylla

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.

Merian, Maria Sibylla

Maria Sibylla Merian (märē´ä zĬbü´lä mā´rēän), 1647–1717, German naturalist, entomologist, and painter of insects and flowers, b. Frankfurt; daughter of Matthäus Merian, the elder. Her earliest illustrations were of flowers, and her first books, the Blumenbuchs [books of flowers], were published 1675–80 and 1680. Her first book on insects (1679), detailing caterpillar metamorphosis, with plates she engraved and colored, for the first time depicted full life cycles and relationships to other animals and plants. She subsequently moved to Amsterdam, then went in 1699 to Dutch Guiana (now Suriname) to study tropical insects, with an emphasis on the metamorphosis of butterflies and moths. Her work on that subject (1705), illustrated with colored engravings and considered her finest accomplishment, appeared after she returned (1701). Her remarkable painting of a Guianan bird-eating spider was ridiculed as a flight of female fancy until 1863 when an English naturalist observed a similar Amazonian spider. A number of other books with her observations and illustrations were published posthumously. Her careful research, combined with her exquisite pictorial studies, mostly in watercolor, earned her considerable esteem. The British Museum has two volumes of her drawings.

See facsimile edition of her Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium (2016); K. Todd, Chrysalis: Maria Sibylla Merian and the Secrets of Metamorphosis (2007); D. Brafman and S. Schrader, Insects and Flowers: The Art of Maria Sibylla Merian (2008); E. Reitsma, Maria Sibylla Merian and Daughters: Women of Art and Science (2008).

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Merian, Maria Sibylla
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.