Hopane got its name from a Burmese tree, the Hopea tree, which was named after the British botanist John Hope :
[…] a 30-carbon five-ring affair that people had taken to calling the “hopane” skeleton—not because it inspired particularly positive expectations, but because the genus of Burmese trees where it was first discovered was named after an eighteenth-century English botanist named John Hope. Probably the only reason anyone knew about hopane to begin with was that the British Museum has used resin from Hopea trees as a varnish. What was disconcerting was that compounds with this hopane ring structure were present in every rock or sediment sample one analyzed, no matter when or where it was formed. And yet, as far as anyone knew, such compounds were made only by a few exotic species of tropical trees, ferns, and mosses.The question that remains is Does this Burmese tree species or genus not have a Burmese (Myanmar) name? And if yes, shouldn't the name hopane change into a more Burmese-flavored name? A nightmare for chemical nomenclature!
Anyway, this wouldn't change the molecular structure of hopane (C30H52), a hydrocarbon molecule, which is shown in the sketch above with its carbon numbering and ring lettering.
Keywords: organic chemistry, botany, tree resin, history
 Susan M. Gaines, Geoffrey Eglington, and Jürgen Rullkötter: Echoes of Life • What Fossil Molecules Reveal about Earth History. Oxford University Press, New York, 2009; page 62.