One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1An unfertilized queen bee.
- ‘The bees raise the virgin queens until mature at which time the beekeeper transfers them into a small hive called a nucleus.’
- ‘After determining the dance characteristics of 25-35 foragers of these two colonies, two virgin queens were reared from the yellow parent and each instrumentally inseminated with semen of single sons of the black parent.’
- ‘Although most drone bees are in fact as useless as clergy, at least one of them does perform an important function - fertilizing a virgin queen bee and engendering a new colony.’
- ‘We generated hybrid supersister queens by instrumentally inseminating a virgin queen from a low line with semen of a single drone from one high line.’
- ‘African virgin queens are more successful fighters, too, which gives them a significant advantage if they encounter other virgin queens in the colony.’
2Queen Elizabeth I of England, who died unmarried.
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