Entomology, or the study of insects, offers great possibilities of advancing our knowledge about living organisms that might be extremely useful in the lives of human beings as well. It also provides an excellent pastime for lovers of nature who can derive immense pleasure from their collections of different species of beautiful creatures like butterflies. Chas B. Antrams' excellent book on India's butterflies is both a guidebook for those interested in collecting species of butterflies as well as a textbook for students of Entomology who can pick up the basics of this branch of learning from its pages. The author is modest about his presentation but keen Entomologists have found enough merit in this book first published in 1924. The chief objective of the book, according to the author, has been to show an illustration of different species described excepting a few only which very closely resemble one another. The illustrations, very pains takingly and competently done by the author himself, make the description of the species easily comprehensible. This valuable book has been put together after a devoted study of butterflies in different parts of India for over 20 years and interaction with innumerable collectors of butterflies. All available texts on butterflies had been consulted by Antram during the course of his research in coordination with such prestigious institutions like the Bombay Natural History Society. A note on the collecting and preservation of butterflies is equally useful for individual collectors and school and college museums or laboratories. The Index is very helpful for easy reference of particular species. The book is as valuable for the uninitiated as for those with some knowledge of the subject. No good school or college library should fail to add it to its collection of important reference books.
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