The life of the bee (Google eBook)

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Dodd, Mead, 1901 - Bee culture - 427 pages
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Review: The Life of the Bee

User Review  - Tamhack - Goodreads

"Maurice Maeterlinck (1862-1949), born in Ghent, Belgium, came from a well-to-do family. He was educated at a Jesuit college and read law, but a short practice as a lawyer in his home town convinced ... Read full review

Review: The Life of the Bee

User Review  - Garry - Goodreads

A classic in the history of bee literature. A fascinating and timely appreciation of the bee and the life of the hive. The late 19th century mindset of the author adds to the interest. The musings on ... Read full review

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Page 200 - London, lie has determined precisely the angle required ; and he found by the most exact mensuration the subject could admit, that it is the very angle, in which the three planes in the bottom of the cell of a honey-comb do actually meet.
Page 199 - It is a curious mathematical problem, at what precise angle the three planes which compose the bottom of a cell ought to meet, in order to make the greatest possible saving, or the least expense of material and labour.
Page 198 - It is a curious mathematical problem," says Dr. Reid, " at what precise angle the three planes which compose the bottom of a cell in a honey-comb ought to meet, in order to make the greatest saving or the least expense of material and labour. This is one of those problems belonging to the higher parts of mathematics, which are called problems of maxima and minima. It has been resolved by some mathematicians, particularly...
Page 303 - ... blue. Each day, from noon till three, when the sun shines resplendent, this plumed horde sallies forth in search of the bride, who is indeed more royal, more difficult of conquest, than the most inaccessible princess of fairy legend; for twenty or thirty tribes will hasten from all the neighbouring cities, her court thus consisting of more than ten thousand suitors; and from these ten thousand one alone will be chosen for the unique kiss of an instant that shall wed him to death no less than...
Page 74 - They are the soul of the summer, the clock whose dial records the moments of plenty ; they are the untiring wing on which delicate perfumes float ; the guide of the quivering light-ray, the song of the slumberous, languid air ; and their flight is the token, the sure and melodious note, of all the myriad fragile joys that are born in the heat and dwell in the sunshine. They teach us to tune our ear to the softest, most intimate whisper of these good, natural hours. To him who has known them and loved...
Page 44 - Finally, it is the spirit of the hive that fixes the hour of the great annual sacrifice to the genius of the race : the hour, that is, of the swarm ; when we find a whole people, who have attained the topmost pinnacle of prosperity and power, suddenly abandoning to the generation to come their wealth and their palaces, their homes and the fruits of their labour ; themselves content to encounter the hardships and perils of a new and distant country.
Page 198 - There are only three possible figures of the cells, which can make them all equal and similar, without any useless interstices. These are the equilateral triangle, the square, and the regular hexagon. It is well known to mathematicians, that there is not a fourth way possible, in which a plane may be cut into little spaces that shall be equal, similar and regular, without leaving any interstices.
Page 312 - ... hostile madness of love. Most creatures have a vague belief that a very precarious hazard, a kind of transparent membrane, divides death from love; and that the profound idea of nature demands that the giver of life should die at the moment of giving. Here this idea, whose memory lingers still over the kisses of man, is realized in its primal simplicity. No sooner has the union been accomplished than the male's abdomen opens, the organ detaches itself, dragging with it the mass of the entrails;...
Page 326 - An admirable ecstacy, wherein death, supervening in all that our sphere has of most limpid and loveliest, in virginal, limitless space, stamps the instant of happiness on the sublime transparence of the great sky; purifying in that immaculate light the something of wretchedness that always hovers around love...
Page 33 - ... the highest degree of intellect after that of man. The aim of nature is manifestly the improvement of the race ; but no less manifest is her inability, or refusal, to obtain such improvement except at the cost of the liberty, the rights, and the happiness of the individual. In proportion as a society organises itself, and rises in the scale, so does a shrinkage enter the private life of each one of its members. Where there is progress, it is the result only of a more and more complete sacrifice...

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