Where did butterflies get their name?

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What are some things with interesting names? Piggy Banks? Polka dots? Teddy bears? – How about “butterfly”!?
 
Because the word “butterfly” has been around for a very long time, no on is sure of its exact origin. Some people say that the butterfly got its name because it was originally called a “flutter-by” (since these cool bugs can flutter right by you) and that eventually, the name got switched around to become “butterfly,” instead!      
 
Believe it or not, another commonly cited idea is that butterflies were once believed to be witches in disguise! These witches were thought to steal milk and butter at night, thus giving our friendly butterflies a reputation that gave them this name! Another theory says the name comes from the butter-like color of many butterflies’ wings!  
 
In most other languages, butterflies are not known by a name that has anything to do with butter, which is why it’s all the more silly and funny that they have this very strange name in English!    
 
by   (whyzz writer)
  • Exploration

     

     

    Beyond the butter!

     

     

    Aside from their name, here are some other really cool facts about butterflies!
     
    • Many types of butterflies taste with their feet! 
    • The world’s largest type of butterfly is the Queen Victoria Birdwing, and the smallest is the Pygmy Blue!
       
    • Male and female butterflies can often be told apart by the colors on their wings, or even their behavior! (Males are more likely to sit and perch, while females spend more time moving around and looking for a place to lay eggs.)
       
    • Butterflies are believed to live on every continent except for Antarctica!
     
    What other neat things have you learned about these awesome insects??
     
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