bee [bee bees] BrE [biː]
NAmE [biː]
1. a black and yellow flying insect that can sting. Bees live in large groups and make honey (= a sweet sticky substance that is good to eat)
a swarm of bees
a bee sting
Bees were buzzing in the clover.
see also beehive, beeswax, bumblebee, queen bee
2. (NAmE) a meeting in a group where people combine work, competition and pleasure
a sewing bee
see also spelling bee
more at the birds and the bees at bird, busy as a bee at busy adj.
Idioms: bee's knees have a bee in your bonnet
Word Origin:
Old English bēo, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch bij and German dialect Beie.
Example Bank:
Butterflies, flies, and bees pollinate flowers.
He was stung by thousands of angry bees.
Lavender attracts bees.
The bees swarmed around the hive.

WordNet Dictionary:
1. any of numerous hairy-bodied insects including social and solitary species
2. a social gathering to carry out some communal task or to hold competitions

Webster's 1913 Dictionary:
p. p.1.p. p. of Be; - used for been.
n.1.(Zool.) An insect of the order Hymenoptera, and family Apidæ (the honeybees), or family Andrenidæ (the solitary bees.) See Honeybee.
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.
The cellar . . . was dug by a bee in a single day.
3.(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.
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
a - To be choleric.
b - To be restless or uneasy.
c - To be full of fancies; to be a little crazy.

Legal Dictionary:

BEE. The name of a well known insect.
     2. Bees are considered ferae naturae while unreclaimed; and they are not more subjects of property while in their natural state, than the birds which have their nests on the tree of an individual. 3 Binn. R. 546 5 Sm. & Marsh. 333. This agrees with the Roman law. Inst. 2 1, 14; Dig. 41, 1, 5, 2; 7 Johns. Rep. 16; 2 Bl. Com. 392 Bro. Ab. Propertie, 37; Coop. Justin. 458.
     3. In New York it has been decided that bees in a tree belong, to the owner of the soil, while unreclaimed. When they have been reclaimed, and the owner can identify them, they belong to him, and not to the owner of the soil. 15 Wend. R. 550. See 1 Cowen, R. 243.

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