thomas moffett


My attempt to visualise the characters from Ben Aaronovitch’s “Rivers of London”! I tried to find an actor or actress for each character to use as a reference. Top left to bottom right:

Peter Grant (Samuel Anderson)
Lesley May (Georgia Moffett)
Beverley Brook (Amandla Stenberg)
Molly (Tao Okamoto)
Thomas Nightingale (Richard Armitage)

I know that some of these don’t really look like the mentioned actors. That’s because I wanted to draw the characters, not the actors, so my mental image of them had a lot of influence :)


Thomas Moffett or Muffet was an English naturalist and physician. He edited the Insectorum sive minimorum animalium theatrum (Theater of Insects), which was an encyclopedia of insects and their behavior based on previous scientific works. Moffett added commentary on the beauty and virtue of insects and the lessons they could teach humans. Moffet wrote

Do you require Prudence? regard the Ant; Do you desire Justice? regard the Bee; Do you commend Temperance? take advice of them both. Do you praise Valour? See the whole generation of Grasshoppers.

Moffett was particularly interested in spiders. In fact, the nursery rhyme “Little Miss Muffet” is said to have been written about an incident involving one of his children.

Thomas Moffett (British, 1553-1604). Insectorum sive minimorum animalium theatrum. London: T. Cotes, 1634. MU Ellis Special Collections Rare Folio QL463 .M93


Thomas Moffett, Animalium Theatrum (Theatre of Insects); Insectorum sive Minimorum Animalium Theatrum; Thomas Cotes for Benjamin Allen, London, 1634.