Honey Production

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

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The first recorded beehives, shown on ancient Egyptian wall paintings, depict men removing honeycomb from cylindrical hives and packing it into jars. The men are holding smoking bowls before the hives, a trick still used today to make the bees less likely to sting.
Bee-men in the forests of central Europe made ownership marks beside wild bee nests in trees and created detachable doors that enabled them to raid the colonies more easily. Log hives were hung in the trees or set on the ground; such hives eventually became a form of folk art, carved into figures such as bears or humans.