Cocoa Tree with Southern Armyworm Moth

Maria Sibylla Merian1702/1703

Royal Collection Trust, UK

Royal Collection Trust, UK
London, United Kingdom

A watercolour of a branch of a cocoa tree (Theobroma cacao) with the life cycle of the southern armyworm moth (Spodoptera eridania). This is a version of plate 26 in Merian's Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium.


  • Title: Cocoa Tree with Southern Armyworm Moth
  • Creator: Maria Sibylla Merian
  • Date Created: 1702/1703
  • Physical Dimensions: 37.7 × 28.4 cm (vellum sheet)
  • Provenance: Dr Richard Mead (1673–1754); his sale (London, Abraham Langford, 13–16 January 1755, lot 66), where purchased by an unknown collector; sold 15 June 1768 (London, Paterson and Eve, lot 572), where purchased by Sir John Hill via Wilson; George III by c.1810
  • Rights: Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2021
  • Medium: Watercolour, Bodycolour, Vellum, Gum arabic
  • Depicted Topic: Fruit, Trees, Moths, Caterpillars

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