The BeeHolder, April 2011
To bee, or not to bee: that is the question:
the insolence of kids with stones
by William Shakespeare
This little known piece was written by Shakespeare in the late 1570s when he was in his teens and shows an amazing maturity of style. It has been largely forgotten since his adaptation of it to Hamlet about 20 years later. Shakespeare was much taken with the drama of the hive, queen flight and the personality of drones. He, with his contemporaries, believed that all female bee-keepers were known by their bees as ‘Ophelia’ but recent bee neuro-science shows that there is regional variation, with ‘Loveday’ occurring in the south-west and Nuala among Irish bees, so we have adopted a more generic name here.
An Hes, The Newsletter of the West Cornwall BKA