Saturday, September 01, 2007

Sunken treasure

Here's a wonder for you: These are skeletons of Cyrtoidea, a kind of radiolarian. They're among the tiny creatures that make up plankton, at the foundation of all life in the sea.

The illustration is by Victorian naturalist Ernst Haeckel, and is one of many gorgeous plates now in the public domain. (I snagged this one from Wikipedia.)

I don't know which is more awe-inspiring, the drawings themselves or the fact that these structures belong to real, living beings that share the planet with us.

Sometimes, you just have to sit quietly and soak up the magic.

*Click the graphic to take a closer look


Carly said...


Cool! Some look a little bit like Christmas ornaments, while others remind me of bird houses. All of them are beautiful. :)

MyMaracas said...

Aren't they something, Carly? I'm trying to figure out how to interpret them into garden lanterns. Porcelain ones, maybe.