The Insect World. Struggle Between a Rumbler (The Goliathus Gruntator of Violinnaeus and a Scraper-Beetle (Scarabaeus Performaturus Dolenter).
D M *
D M *
Natural History, Animal Behaviour, Music, Instruments
Shows a large beetle which, on closer inspection, proves to be a cellist dressed in a tailcoat, with the coat-tails resembling beetles' wings. The illustrations show the musician opening the cello case and playing the instrument, as if it were the attack of one beetle on another. They show the Scraper (cellist) opening the 'cocoon' (cello case) of the Rumbler, which is tempted out of the cocoon by 'a bit of rosin'. The Scraper seizes the Rumbler, 'ties its long wiry antennae to its tail' (attaches the strings of the cello from the tuning pegs to the tailpiece), twists its mandibles (tunes it), and 'throttles' the insect (grabs hold of the fingerboard). In the end, the Rumbler 'falls back on its exhausted antagonist', while a Screecher (i.e the cello bow) 'gazes on the Prostrate Giants of the Insect World'.
© Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical Project, Universities of Leeds and Sheffield, 2005 - 2020
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