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Author Topic: Old Mason Bee Book  (Read 360 times)

Offline The15thMember

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Old Mason Bee Book
« on: May 25, 2019, 03:32:37 pm »
I went secondhand book shopping for my birthday a few days ago, and I found an interesting book.  It's a book by J.H. Fabre called "The Mason-Bees".  It's an English translation of a collection of scientific essays by Mssr. Fabre, who was a Frenchman.  Most of them are about experiments he performed with mason bees to learn about their habits.  The book is from 1914.  I just thought I'd share this with you guys, since it was such an interesting find.  I can't wait to read it.  It'll be so interesting to read a scientific work from that long ago. 
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline saltybluegrass

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Re: Old Mason Bee Book
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2019, 05:29:31 pm »
I cannot separate myself from these insects and life eternal or the blessings of tried and true traditions .
As a Freemason myself , I looked up your post in a freemasonic way - I have seen the pictures and allegory used in beehives pertaining to our teachings, but I have not progressed to the level of learning in Freemasonry where this is taught.
I can tell you our fraternity (oldest in the world) is built upon the harmony of those that erected Solomon?s temple where not a sound of axe or hammer was heard as the supplies were cut off site and erected and fit in such a manner many believed it was by an ancient deity that formed them so perfectly .
That?s my two cents and I know this subject wasn?t exactly about this but when I hear Mason....
And I think to myself, what a wonderful world

Offline The15thMember

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Re: Old Mason Bee Book
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2019, 06:15:41 pm »
I cannot separate myself from these insects and life eternal or the blessings of tried and true traditions .
As a Freemason myself , I looked up your post in a freemasonic way - I have seen the pictures and allegory used in beehives pertaining to our teachings, but I have not progressed to the level of learning in Freemasonry where this is taught.
I can tell you our fraternity (oldest in the world) is built upon the harmony of those that erected Solomon?s temple where not a sound of axe or hammer was heard as the supplies were cut off site and erected and fit in such a manner many believed it was by an ancient deity that formed them so perfectly .
That?s my two cents and I know this subject wasn?t exactly about this but when I hear Mason....
That's fascinating, Salty.  I'm very interested in Freemasonry, although neither I nor anyone I know is a member of either the Freemasons or the Order of the Eastern Star.  So many of the founding fathers were Freemasons, and I certainly believe that their teachings and knowledge has and will continue to impact this country in a powerful way.   
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline The15thMember

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Re: Old Mason Bee Book
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2019, 07:57:41 pm »
I started reading this book the other day, and it is absolutely wonderful.  I've never read a scientific work that not only was informational, but captures and displays the life of a creature so beautifully.  I didn't know that scientific writing could have a soul like this.  Here's a paragraph, just to give you an idea.

"The mortar-quarry which the Sicilian Mason-bee prefers to work is a frequented highway, whose metal of chalky flints, crushed by the passing wheels, has become a smooth surface, like a continuous flagstone.  Whether settling on a twig in a hedge or fixing her abode under the eaves of some rural dwelling, she always goes for her building-materials to the nearest path or road, without allowing herself to be distracted from her business by the constant traffic of people and cattle.  You should see the active Bee at work when the road is dazzling white under the rays of a hot sun.  Between the adjoining farm, which is the building-yard, and the road, in which the mortar is prepared, we hear the hum of the Bees perpetually crossing one another as they go to and fro.  The air seems traversed by incessant trails of smoke, so straight and rapid is the worker's flight.  Those on the way to the nest carry tiny pellets of mortar, the size of a small shot; those who return at once settle on the driest and hardest spots.  Their whole body aquiver, they scrape with the tips of their mandibles and rake with their front tarsi to extract atoms of earth and grains of sand, which, rolled between their teeth, become impregnated with saliva and form a solid mass.  The work is pursued so vigorously that the worker lets herself be crushed under the feet of the passers-by rather than abandon her task."     

It's so beautifully written.  It sounds like a nature documentary.  Can't you just hear David Attenborough reading this?  :cheesy:  Mssr. Fabre has such a unique style, which he summarized in this quote: "Others again have reproached me with my style, which has not the solemnity, nay, better, the dryness of the schools. They fear lest a page that is read without fatigue should not always be the expression of the truth. Were I to take their word for it, we are profound only on condition of being obscure."  I am a total fan of this guy now, and want to read everything he's written.           
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline yes2matt

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Re: Old Mason Bee Book
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2019, 10:25:38 pm »
   

It's so beautifully written.  It sounds like a nature documentary.  Can't you just hear David Attenborough reading this?  :cheesy:  Mssr. Fabre has such a unique style, which he summarized in this quote: "Others again have reproached me with my style, which has not the solemnity, nay, better, the dryness of the schools. They fear lest a page that is read without fatigue should not always be the expression of the truth. Were I to take their word for it, we are profound only on condition of being obscure."  I am a total fan of this guy now, and want to read everything he's written.           
While I would prefer to hold a paper copy, sometimes I like to look through the older texts before I go spending all my birthday money.  :)  Archive.org is a treasure trove (and Fabre is worth a continued study) https://archive.org/details/masonbees00fabr/

Offline The15thMember

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Re: Old Mason Bee Book
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2019, 10:41:02 pm »

While I would prefer to hold a paper copy, sometimes I like to look through the older texts before I go spending all my birthday money.  :)  Archive.org is a treasure trove (and Fabre is worth a continued study) https://archive.org/details/masonbees00fabr/

How have I never seen that website before?!  Thanks so much for the link, I?m sure I?ll be perusing around there for, like, the rest of my life.  :cheesy:  Although I do agree about the paper copy.  Nothing replaces the feeling of a book in your hands.
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline yes2matt

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Re: Old Mason Bee Book
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2019, 01:19:25 pm »

While I would prefer to hold a paper copy, sometimes I like to look through the older texts before I go spending all my birthday money.  :)  Archive.org is a treasure trove (and Fabre is worth a continued study) https://archive.org/details/masonbees00fabr/

How have I never seen that website before?!  Thanks so much for the link, I?m sure I?ll be perusing around there for, like, the rest of my life.  :cheesy:  Although I do agree about the paper copy.  Nothing replaces the feeling of a book in your hands.

Scroll down and you will see available digitization in multiple formats.  I have a Kindle, and I download the file from here and put it onto the kindle with a free program called Calibre. It's a great combination to access books out of copyright.  I'm currently reading CC Miller's_Fifty years among the bees_

Offline CoolBees

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Re: Old Mason Bee Book
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2020, 02:10:22 pm »

While I would prefer to hold a paper copy, sometimes I like to look through the older texts before I go spending all my birthday money.  :)  Archive.org is a treasure trove (and Fabre is worth a continued study) https://archive.org/details/masonbees00fabr/

I would like to thank Member & yes2matt for recommending this book and providing the online link to it. It took me a while to read it - but it wasn't the books fault, but my busy schedule. Anyways, it's an outstanding book! I highly recommend.
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