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This is one bug to rule them all as scientists name new butterfly after Lord of the Rings villain

Rachel Lang

| Last updated 

This is one bug to rule them all as scientists name new butterfly after Lord of the Rings villain

JRR Tolkein's ultimate evildoer, Sauron, has had a butterfly named after him.

The dark wizard in The Lord of the Rings is one of the nastiest villains ever to jump off the pages of a book and into your brain (or onto a movie screen, then your brain) and his thirst for destruction is very.... unlike a butterfly.

But, at the end of the day, scientists said 'yolo' and have named a newly discovered insect after Middle Earth's worst of the worst.

The butterfly, named Saurona, is one of several new butterflies described by an international team of researchers in a new scientific paper.


Saurona was named by Senior Curator of Butterflies Blanca Huertas, the London's Natural History Museum.

"Giving these butterflies an unusual name helps to draw attention to this under-appreciated group," she said, as per London's Natural History Museum.

"It shows that, even among a group of very similar-looking species, you can find beauty among the dullness."

Oof, shots fired.


Anyway, Dr Huertas added: "'Naming a genus is not something that happens very often, and it's even more rare to be able to name two at once.

She added it was an honour to name the newly discovered species.

"It was a great privilege to do so, and now means that we can start describing new species that we have uncovered as a result of this research," she said.

The butterfly boasts orange wings with dark spots.


So, sort of like the Eye of Sauron in Tolkein's classic fantasy epic.

For you non-nerds out there, Sauron was the evil ruler of Mordor.

He also had this gnarly all-seeing fiery eye that brought terror to Middle Earth.

As Tolkein once wrote: "The Eye was rimmed with fire, but was itself glazed, yellow as a cat’s, watchful and intent, and the black slit of its pupil opened on a pit, a window into nothing."


Sounds like a butterfly to us.

And every time Frodo popped on one of those damn rings, the eye would go berserk.

Anyway, that's why the insect was given the moniker of Sauron; a move we'll bet Middle Earth's number one bad boy would not be too keen on.

But too bad so sad, Sauron.


Because in real Earth, not Middle Earth, you don't exist and butterflies do.

Including this one, one bug to rule them all.

Featured Image Credit: New Line Cinema. Natural History Museum.

Topics: Lord Of The Rings, Science

Rachel Lang
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