Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Honey Bees

"Alfred Dürer, 1514: Eros, Venus and the bees. "Eros stung by a bee, when he inhaled the pleasant fragrance of a rose, went crying to take refuge in the arms of Venus," Dear mother, I die, have mercy on me, a flying snake bit me painfully cheek " Anacreontic singing, 6th c. av. AD " from Launceston Beekeepers blog.

"Anacreontics are verses in a meter used by the Greek poet Anacreon in his poems dealing with love and wine" (wikipedia)

While on the topic of Greek mythology and bees, or honey, "MELISSEUS was the rustic Daimon (Spirit) of honey and the art of beekeeping... closely identified with the Euboian Aristaios, who was also the reputed discoverer of honey...Melisseus may also be related to the Titan-god Astraios (the starry one), for the amber-coloured (êlektron or soukinos) honey-sap (melissa) which bees were believed to collect from flowers and trees was often described as star-fallen (astron). from theoi.com

The herb Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis) has a lemon scent which is thought to attract bees. Lemongrass oil is used to attract swarming bees to new hives, and a bee phermone is reminiscent of lemon.  Lemon balm grows like a weed for me.  I've been trying to control it in my yard for a decade.  Now I'll replant some near the beehive, when I get that far. Pic from Wikipedia entry for lemon balm.

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