- The definition of an bee is an insect characterized by being of the family Apoidea, having hairy bodies, feeding on pollen and nectar and storing honey.
Yellow jackets, bumble and honey are each an example of a type of bee.
Closeup of a bee.
bee definition by Webster's New World
Origin: Middle English ; from Old English beo ; from Indo-European base an unverified form bhei- from source German biene, Old Prussian bitte, Old Irish bech
Origin: altered (prob. after bee) ; from dial bean, a social gathering to assist ; from Middle English bene, extra feudal service, a favor, boon ; from Old English ben, compulsory service, request; akin to Old Norse bon: see boon
Origin: Middle English bei, bracelet ; from Old English beah ; from bugen, to bend: see bow
bee definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- a. Any of several winged, hairy-bodied, usually stinging insects of the superfamily Apoidea in the order Hymenoptera, including both solitary and social species and characterized by sucking and chewing mouthparts for gathering nectar and pollen.b. A bumblebee.c. A honeybee.
- A social gathering where people combine work, competition, and amusement: a quilting bee.
Origin: Middle English, from Old English bēo; see bhei- in Indo-European roots. Sense 2, perhaps alteration of dialectal bean, voluntary help given to a farmer by his neighbors, from Middle English bene, extra service by a tenant to his lord, from Old English bēn, prayer; see bhā-2 in Indo-European roots.
Origin: Middle English be, a ring, from Old English bēag; see bheug- in Indo-European roots.
bee - Phrases/Idioms
have a bee in one's bonnet
- to be obsessed with one idea
- to be not quite sane
a bee in (one's) bonnet
- An impulsive, often eccentric turn of mind; a notion.
- An obsession.