Johannes Goedaert was a Dutch naturalist, entomologist and painter, famous for his illustrations of the growth and metamorphosis of insects published in a three volume work as Metamorphosis Naturalis. He was one of the earliest authors on entomology and first to write on the insects of the Netherlands and Europe, based on his own observations and experiments between 1635 and 1667.
Goedaert was born in Middelburg where he was baptized on 19 March 1617. His mother was Judith Pottier and his father Pieter Goedaert died when he was eight years old. At the age of 18 he became a member of the Saint Lucas Guild for painters. Hardly anything is known about Goedaert’s training in draughtsmanship and painting. He was a contemporary of such painters as Adriaen van de Venne, Francois Ryckhals, Mattheus Molanus and Christoffel van den Berghe, who were active in Middelburg in the first half of the 17th century. As van den Berghe included paintings of insects in his work, it has been suggested that he might have been Goedaert’s teacher. However, this is not certain.