The magazine for the modern naturalist About Contact Back issues Shop Help Subscribe

"British Wildlife is the pulsating heart of the UK nature conservation movement"

Matthew Oates, National Trust

"The most important and informative publication on wildlife of our times"

Michael McCarthy, The Independent

"Packed with readable, thoughtful, up to date articles; written by ecologists and naturalists for ecologists and naturalists"

Nick Baker, Presenter and Naturalist

From issue:   Issue:   British Wildlife 15.6 August 2004

The English names of butterflies

By - Peter Marren

Like so many words, 'butterfly' arrived fully formed in the English language and without explanation. Although the OED has traced it back to Saxon times, its original meaning is obscure. 

Buy this issue Subscribe now

"British Wildlife is the pulsating heart of the UK nature conservation movement."

Matthew Oates, National Trust

"The most important and informative publication on wildlife of our times"

Michael McCarthy, The Independent

"Packed with readable, thoughtful, up to date articles; written by ecologists and naturalists for ecologists and naturalists"

Nick Baker, Presenter and Naturalist