Close-ups of butterfly wing scales! You should definitely click on these images to get the full detail.
I’ve paired each amazing close-up (by macro photographer Linden Gledhill) with an image of the corresponding butterfly or moth. The featured lepidoptera* are (in order of appearance):
- Madagascar diadem Hypolimnas dexithea (photo by Michel-Georges Bernard)
- Comet moth Argema mittrei (photo by Axel Strauß)
- Sunset moth Chrysiridia rhipheus (photo from Wikimedia Commons)
- Giant Blue Morpho Morpho didius (photo by Didier Descouens, Muséum de Toulouse)
- Rippon’s Birdwing Troides hypolitus (photo by Robert Nash, Ulster Museum)
*Lepidoptera (the scientific order that includes moths and butterflies) means “scaly wing.” The scales get their color not from pigment - but from microscopic structures that manipulate light.
Wakizashi Momoyama Sword
- Dated: 16th Century
- Culture: Japanese
- Medium: steel, iron, gold, lacquer
- Measurements: overall length: 91 cm. Blade lenght: 53 cm
- Attributed to Bishu Osafune Sukesada, Momoyama Period
The blade is a shinogi-zukuri (the most general style for tachi/katana and wakizashi) and it has gunome of nie and nioi with ashi and also has a slight itame (wood grained) hada. The suriage nakago (tang of a shorter blade) comes with one mekugi-ana signed Bishu Osafune Suke (sada), black lacquer saya with aogai karakusa.
The iron tsuba has a kemari and willow signed Shoami Kanenori while the fuchi-kashira (set of hilt collar and butt cap) is a shakudo (a billon of gold and copper - typically 4-10% gold, 96-90% copper - which can be treated to form an indigo/black patina resembling lacquer) with gilt of chrysanthemum and butterflies.