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CHAP. 4. (5.)—BEES.

But among them all, the first rank, and our especial admiration, ought, in justice, to be accorded to bees, which alone, of all the insects, have been created for the benefit of man. They extract honey and collect it, a juicy substance remarkable for its extreme sweetness, lightness, and wholesomeness. They form their combs and collect wax, an article that is useful for a thousand purposes of life; they are patient of fatigue, toil at their labours, form themselves into political communities, hold councils together in private, elect chiefs in common, and, a thing that is the most remarkable of all, have their own code of morals. In addition to this, being as they are, neither tame nor wild, so all-powerful is Nature, that, from a creature so minute as to be nothing more hardly than the shadow of an animal, she has created a marvel beyond all comparison. What muscular power, what exertion of strength are we to put in comparison with such vast energy and such industry as theirs? What display of human genius, in a word, shall we compare with the reasoning powers manifested by them? In this they have, at all events, the advantage of us-they know of nothing but what is for the common benefit of all. Away, then, with all questions whether they respire or no, and let us be ready to agree on the question of their blood; and yet, how little of it can possibly exist in bodies so minute as theirs.—And now let us form some idea of the instinct they display.

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