William Henry Miskin

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William Henry Miskin (1842 – 1913) was an Australian solicitor, politician and entomologist.

Early life[edit]

Born at Guildford, England, William Henry Miskin moved to Victoria, Australia at age 9 and later to Brisbane. He started collecting butterflies as a boy.

Professional life[edit]

He trained as a solicitor and was active in local government, becoming the founding President of the Shire of Toowong in 1880.[1][2] Miskin Street in Toowong is named after him.[3]


He published numerous taxonomic papers on Lepidoptera from 1874 to 1892, including a description of Coscinocera hercules. In 1891 he published the Synonymical Catalogue of Butterflies of Australia.[1] He was the President of the Royal Society of Queensland in 1890 and a member of the board of trustees of the Queensland Museum.[1]

Later life[edit]

After having an affair with his domestic servant, he abandoned his wife. His wife divorced him in 1894.[4] She subsequently sold his collection and library were purchased by the Queensland Museum.[1]

Miskin worked as a solicitor in Rockhampton until his death in 1913, taking no further role in public life.[5]

Published works[edit]

  • Miskin, William Henry (1891), Synonymical catalogue of the Lepidoptera Rhopalocera (butterflies) of Australia : with full bibliographical reference, including descriptions of some new species, J.C. Beal, Govt. Printer, retrieved 10 September 2017


  1. ^ a b c d Kitching, Roger Laurence (1999), Biology of Australian butterflies, CSIRO Publishing, p. 11, ISBN 978-0-643-05027-3
  2. ^ "Official Notifications". The Brisbane Courier. XXXV, (4, 123). Queensland, Australia. 7 August 1880. p. 6. Retrieved 10 September 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  3. ^ "Toowong History Group" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 10 September 2017. Retrieved 10 September 2017.
  4. ^ "INTERCOLONIAL". Evening News (8595). New South Wales, Australia. 19 December 1894. p. 3. Retrieved 10 September 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  5. ^ "DEATH OF MR. W. H. MISKIN". The Capricornian. 38, (42). Queensland, Australia. 18 October 1913. p. 18. Retrieved 10 September 2017 – via National Library of Australia.

External links[edit]