The True Amazons: Or, the Monarchy of Bees. Being a new Discovery and Improvement of those Wonderful Creatures.
Seller ID: 1766
London: T. Longman and T. Astley, 1749. Eighth edition (pp. 163, adverts). Duodecimo (17.5 cm), full leather with gilt decorations and titles; frontispiece portrait of Warder. With the bookplate of Sir Edward Littleton, Bart., likely the fourth baronet (1727?- 1812), an important Staffordshire landowner. "Warder [1654/5 - 1724] made a study of the habits of bees and their external anatomy using a light microscope, and embodied the results of many years of observation in his only book, The True Amazons, or, The Monarchy of Bees [It was the standard work on bees for many years until it was superseded by Thorley's Female Monarchy (Carlyle)] . In it he described the use of a hand lens to confirm by simple dissection the sex of the then mysterious drones as male bees. He explained why the drones were, contrary to popular opinion, important to the summer economy of the colony. In discussing the practical management of colonies he also advocated the provision of a nearby source of drinking water. Working at a time when straw skeps were the normal accommodation for honeybee colonies Warder explained the advantages of octagonal wooden hives with glass windows. These he had made up on a template to give standard units that could be built up and subdivided as required. He thus laid the foundations of modern apicultural practice. The True Amazons went through nine editions, all published in London, and after the first edition Warder obtained permission for a dedication to Queen Anne. The editions vary, with additional material not always carried into later versions, the last appearing in 1765. The book was translated into German (1718) and abridged into Italian�" (ODNB). Corners worn but a very good copy of this early work in apiculture.
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