As we have reported in the past, a few times a year (thanks to an extremely thoughtful donor) the Land Library receives a well-traveled box of books from a British bookseller. Last week’s shipment had a particularly fun theme — the art and science of bees and beekeeping.
We’re especially thrilled to add the massive, comprehensive Collins Beekeeper’s Bible to our apiculture shelves. The British magazine, County Life, refers to this tome as a paving stone of a book.That it is! Packed into its 400 pages are chapters on honey bee behavior and biology, beekeeping history and folklore, along with a survey of the full range of bee products (honey, beeswax, mead, propolis, royal jelly, and even bee venom, for medicinal use).
Also pictured above is a much smaller volume, but equally intriguing — Bee Boles and Bee Houses by A.M. Foster, a photo-filled study devoted to the clever varieties of alcoves created for beehives throughout history.
We love these book for their fascinating blend of natural history and centuries old cultural traditions! Here’s a few more British bee books, brand new to the Land Library’s shelves:
Beekeeping: Inspiration and Advice for Would-be Smallholders by Andrew Davies, Great Masters of Beekeeping by Ron Brown, Beekeeping at Buckfast Abbey by Brother Adam
The Sacred Bee in Ancient Times and Folklore by Hilda M. Ransome, Skeps: Their History, Making and Use by Frank Alston, a one-of-a-kind history of traditional domed hives, usually made of twisted straw.
This is the second in a series of posts as we prepare for our upcoming Literature of the Land Book Club on Bees and Beekeeping (presented in partnership with the Helen Fowler Library at the Denver Botanic Gardens. For more on the Book Club, click here!
And for more on the great tradition of British natural history books, check out these earlier posts: