In the scientific literature, species are described with generic and species names that can be clearly identified. Place names, body features, but also names of people are used. Eponym is the name (of a species) that goes back to a person's name.
Finnish author Matti Hämäläinen spent months trying to identify the dragonfly species that were named after people. In addition to the global work by many dragonfly researchers, the archivists in local administrations or archives of museums and mission societies were asked to research the data of people who gave a dragonfly its name. A lot of previously unknown birth and death dates were found in this way, though it was not possible to research (complete) dates for all of the namesakes.
The end result is a catalogue of 1,257 people who dragonflies are named after. The species are listed together with brief information about the person, first and last name, and dates of birth and death. The species and subspecies are personal. Generic and sub-generic names shown. In total, 1,928 species and 54 genera were named in honour of people. However, this work also contains synonyms and homonyms. In total, 8,400 of the more recently occurring dragonfly species have been described, and 23% of these descriptions refer to persons. However, among these 8,400 species, there are about 3,000 synonyms. Of the 933 species described between January 1, 1995, and March 10, 2015, 42.9% are eponyms. For anyone interested in the history of dragonfly science, this book will be consulted time and again to reveal the secrets behind the names.