Skeleton Mantis and Oil Plant of Guzerat
Artist: Forbes, James
Plate fifty-six from the second volume of James Forbes' "Oriental Memoirs". Forbes(1749-1819)was the Collector of Revenue at Bharuch and Dhaboi in Gujarat. A keen observer of nature, he made studies of grains, plants, insects and animals that he came across in these parts during his tenure. He found that the insects 'were varied and beautiful'. Of the mantis he wrote: 'There is as great a variety of plants cultivated for the oil which is expressed from their seeds as there is of the Mantis tribe of insects, in Guzerat. The plant here delineated is one of the most delicate of its kind; and the mantis, or Soothsayer, a singular variety among the creeping-leaves, begging-flies, and other insects of the mantis tribe.'