1. Zool. An insect of the order Hymenoptera, and family Apidæ (the honeybees), or family Andrenidæ (the solitary bees.) See Honeybee.
Note: ☞ There are many genera and species. The common honeybee (Apis mellifica) lives in swarms, each of which has its own queen, its males or drones, and its very numerous workers, which are barren females. Besides the Apis mellifica there are other species and varieties of honeybees, as the Apis ligustica of Spain and Italy; the Apis Indica of India; the Apis fasciata of Egypt. The bumblebee is a species of Bombus. The tropical honeybees belong mostly to Melipoma and Trigona.
2. A neighborly gathering of people who engage in united labor for the benefit of an individual or family; as, a quilting bee; a husking bee; a raising bee. [U. S.]
The cellar . . . was dug by a bee in a single day. --S. G. Goodrich.
3. pl. Naut. Pieces of hard wood bolted to the sides of the bowsprit, to reeve the fore-topmast stays through; -- called also bee blocks.
Bee beetle Zool., a beetle (Trichodes apiarius) parasitic in beehives.
Bee bird Zool., a bird that eats the honeybee, as the European flycatcher, and the American kingbird.
Bee flower Bot., an orchidaceous plant of the genus Ophrys (Ophrys apifera), whose flowers have some resemblance to bees, flies, and other insects.
Bee fly Zool., a two winged fly of the family Bombyliidæ. Some species, in the larval state, are parasitic upon bees.
Bee garden, a garden or inclosure to set beehives in ; an apiary. --Mortimer.
Bee glue, a soft, unctuous matter, with which bees cement the combs to the hives, and close up the cells; -- called also propolis.
Bee hawk Zool., the honey buzzard.
Bee killer Zool., a large two-winged fly of the family Asilidæ (esp. Trupanea apivora) which feeds upon the honeybee. See Robber fly.
Bee louse Zool., a minute, wingless, dipterous insect (Braula cæca) parasitic on hive bees.
Bee martin Zool., the kingbird (Tyrannus Carolinensis) which occasionally feeds on bees.
Bee moth Zool., a moth (Galleria cereana) whose larvæ feed on honeycomb, occasioning great damage in beehives.
Bee wolf Zool., the larva of the bee beetle. See Illust. of Bee beetle.
To have a bee in the head or To have a bee in the bonnet. (a) To be choleric. [Obs.] (b) To be restless or uneasy. --B. Jonson. (c) To be full of fancies; to be a little crazy. “She's whiles crack-brained, and has a bee in her head.” --Sir W. Scott.
Bee p. p. of Be; -- used for been. [Obs.]
n 1: any of numerous hairy-bodied insects including social and
2: a social gathering to carry out some communal task or to
First mentioned in Deut. 1:44. Swarms of bees, and the danger of
their attacks, are mentioned in Ps. 118:12. Samson found a
"swarm of bees" in the carcass of a lion he had slain (Judg.
14:8). Wild bees are described as laying up honey in woods and
in clefts of rocks (Deut. 32:13; Ps. 81:16). In Isa. 7:18 the
"fly" and the "bee" are personifications of the Egyptians and
Assyrians, the inveterate enemies of Israel.