Friday, 4 September 2015

Medieval Beehives (2)

This time a beehive in a Bole.

A Bee Bole is a cavity or alcove in a wall for placing Skeps to protect them from the elements, the oldest surviving Bee Boles date from the 12th century.

Skep in a Bole
A wall purpose built to house Beehives.

I´ve also added a couple of pieces to the first Beehives..."ekes" (also called  "imps" or "Nadirs" )
An eke, 3-4 rings of woven straw made the same way as a Skep  and  was used by placing it under the Skep to give just a bit of extra room as the honey comb grew. As the saying goes,  to “eke something out " make it last longer or to go further. The word "Eke" is still used for the Frames that Slot into modern beehives.
nadir is  a larger (taller) Extension of 5 plus rings

Hackles, Pointy shaped straw tents. These are placed on top of the hives to Keep rain off and Keep the hive warm in colder periods.
Hackle comes from the Old English hacele, meaning a cloak or mantle. Later it was used to describe to birds’ plumage, particularly roosters,  leading to the expression, raising the hackles.
I´ll make a small table like structure or a tree stump to place it on later.

The only contemporary  medieval pic I could find of Skeps covered with hackles
The complete Bee related bits and pieces.

Crazy ideas from the past about bees, including,  Bees are the smallest of birds,  and that bees are born from oxen  HERE


  1. Once again, an informative and creative post.

    Thank you.


  2. These really are scene stealers, lovely additional details.

  3. These are absolutely fantastic, and well-researched - perfect scenery for the aspiring beekeeper and wargamer (i.e. me)

  4. A great idea, I never knew how to make a beehive, and what is this wall purpose
    Instead, beehive cognac is very familiar to me, and the taste is good ...

  5. Wonderful scenic pieces, Paul.
    Did you make the hives from scrath or bought them?

  6. Thanks all :-D
    @ Stefan. From Scratch. The post below this one, "Medieval beehives _ Skeps" has a bit of a "how to". The most difficult part is to get the first ring of string to stick to the clay form..after that it´s easy.