A Large Decorative Dome Cased Exotic Lepidopterists’ Display


Origin: English with the Specimens Indonesian & South American
Period: Late Twentieth Century & Late Nineteenth Century
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1980-2000 (the arrangement), c.1880 (the dome)
The Dome:
Height: 20.5 inches
Base: 14 x 7 inches

The turned oval stained oak base having a large nineteenth century glass dome cover, containing an arrangement of sixteen preserved butterfly specimens consisting of thirteen Orange-Barred Sulphur specimens (Phoebis philea) and three Vibrant Sulpher (Hebomoia leucippe) each positioned artistically on graduated cork finial pins.

The glass dome and wooden base are in superb structural condition and the specimens themselves are in also in very good preserved order with their colours still vivid. A few of the specimens are lacking one or two of their antenna. Both examples within the dome are non-native to Britain being Indonesian and South American in origin.

Lepidoptery, the branch of science dedicated to the study of butterflies and moths, has its own legendary figures, and its history is both long and glorious. The Orange-barred Sulphur or Phoebis philea is a species of butterfly found in the Americas including the Caribbean with a wingspan of 68 to 80 mm. There are two to three generations per year in Florida and one in the northern part of the range with adults on wing from mid to late summer. The species habitat is in tropical scrub, gardens, fields, and forest edges. The species eats nectar from red-colored plants and the larvae feed on Cassia species.

The Vibrant Sulphur or Hebomoia leucippe is a butterfly in the family Pieridae, a large family of butterflies containing approximately 1,100 species, mostly from tropical Africa and Asia. With a wingspan of around 3.5 inches it is endemic to the Moluccas and Peleng in Indonesia and it’s vivid colourings mean it is sometimes called the demon butterfly.

Who wouldn’t want to fly on this decorative high?