Gigantic black moth in my living room, oil on card, 15.5 x 16.4 cm
Quite what terrifies about these harmless creatures is beyond my understanding, since as a generality we find their diurnal sisters, the butterflies, delightful. Is it merely their association with night, or their fuzziness, or flittiness that causes quite such fear?
(I assume my subjectivities to be universally felt by normally adjusted people. Just as there are those peculiar types who develop passionate relationships with stick insects, so there must surely be those who adore moths. but I assume those to be unusual persons, perhaps aptly represented in Thomas Harris's book.)
Similar questions might also be asked about why the ladybird is regarded with affection, when other beetles are seen with disdain, even disgust.
The fear of certain insects is seems so profound, and yet so disproportionate to their size and ferocity that I can only assume that our responses are innate, and that perhaps in our distant human past they really did pose a specific life risk, since these fears appear to cross cultures and age groups.