Giants in History: Joo-myung Seok (November 13, 1908 – October 6, 1950) was a Korean butterfly entomologist who made important contributions to the taxonomy of the native butterfly species in Korea.
By measuring the wing length and comparing the patterns of over 160,000 cabbage butterflies collected throughout Korea, Seok concluded that about 20 previously classified species were actually all the cabbage white butterfly. Seok organized the butterflies of Korea into about 250 species, a reduction from the 921 species categorized previously. Seok was also a linguist and proponent of non-violence. On October 6, 1950, Joo-myung Seok was mistaken for a communist soldier and shot. It is said that his last words were “I know only butterflies.”