Linnean collection of insects online

The Linnean Society of London has posted hundreds of beautiful photos of butterflies and moths from the collections of famed naturalist Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778), the father of modern taxonomy. (Seen above, Papilio cardui.) They've also included digitized insect specimens from the collection of Sir James Edward Smith (1759-1828), the founder of the Society. These additions follow the posting of the Herbarium archive, including all 14,000 Linnaean plant specimens. From the Linnean Society:
The Linnean Society is the custodian of Linnaeus' collections, which comprises specimens of plants (14,000), fish (168), shells (1,564) and insects (3,198) acquired from the widow of Carl Linnaeus in 1784 by James Edward Smith as well as Smith's own plant (17,000 specimens) and insect (5,800) collections. The collections also include the library of Linnaeus (some 1600 volumes) and around 3000 letters and manuscripts.

It is the Linnean Society's aim to make available its primary research material in digital formats to support taxonomic and conservation efforts worldwide as well as providing public pleasure and enjoyment.
Link to Linnean Insect Collection page, Link to press release


  1. I still feel that BB should add a fourth section called BoingBoingBugs. They’re totally cool and also, we can ill afford another Klendathu.

  2. OMG that was not cool … I am a lepidepterophobic, I was caught completely off guard by this terrifying pic o_O

    Oh, if only I were joking >_< *shudders*

  3. Antinous (#1), That’s a fun idea! The final issue of bOING bOING the ‘zine had bugs on the cover that Mark drew. : )

  4. It’s the same for me, Keir, none of the images will show up. I updated Firefox, then tried Internet Explorer, but they don’t work in either.

    I expect someone will be along in a minute who can explain where we (or they) are going wrong.

  5. I emailed the contact info on the site telling them about the problem, and heres what I got:

    “There is a problem on the site. I have reported it to our hosting team and I am hoping that it will be fixed really soon.

    Thanks for your interest and I am sure once the problem has been resolved that you will have a wonderful time looking at the insects we have up on line.

    Kind regards,

    So hopefully, soon.

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