Anastasia Lvova

Picturing nature with a 100-year gap

Desmonema Annasethe discovered by Ernst Haeckel and the likes of it in modern maritime photography


Flower Jellyfish by Alexander Semenov - One of the underwater jellyfish pictures created by Alexander Semenov. For more beautiful photos to artist's website Alexander Semenov

19th century biologist and artist Ernst Haeckel is well know for his keenness on jellyfish. He created a number of exquisite illustrations to his "Kunstformen der Natur" that show many variations of these marine animals. Some of the jellyfish included in the book were first discovered and also named by Haeckel. That is the case for Dismonema Annasethe - a species he named after his late wife Anna Sethe.

Ernst and his first cousin Anna were happily married for 18 months when she suddenly fell ill, some historians suggest it was appendicitis, and died leaving Haeckel wounded for the duration of his life.


Discomedusae - Tafel 8 from Kunstformen der Natur - The central jellyfish (1) of which there's also a cross-section (2) on this print out of Ernst Haeckel's "Kunstformen der Natur" was named after the author's late wife Anna Sethe. He named the species Desmonema Annasethe. Ernst Haeckel

With: Anna Sethe

A modern day zoologist and sea life photographer Alexander Semenov takes amazing images of Jellyfish that bare a striking resemblance to Desmonema Annasethe. Being in charge of all WSBS (White Sea Biological Station) underwater projects, he never misses an opportunity to dive with his camera.


A Jellyfish by Alexander Semenov - One of Semenov's striking photos, the subject of which bares an undeniable resemblance to Haeckel's Desmonema Annasethe. For more beautiful photos to artist's website Alexander Semenov


A jellyfish shot by Alexander Semenov - "Graceful, dangerous, beautiful. They hover in the water slowly waving their dome and spreading long tentacles in huge volume." Alexander Semenov For more beautiful photos to artist's website Alexander Semenov

You can see more of his works on Thisiscolossal, where we discovered it or on his website.