Mélanie Roffet-Salque et al used gas chromatographic characterization of beeswax from lipid residues preserved in pottery to characterize beeswax use in Neolithic Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. Studies have shown that beeswax is widely used in some places and may have been used continuously for 8,000 years or more. Thus, the relationship between bees and humans dates back to the beginning of agricultural activity, and possibly even earlier.
Humans have been using bee products, including honey, for at least 9,000 years. A study published in "Nature" pointed out. The relationship between humans and bees has long been speculated through ancient Egyptian drawings, petroglyphs and beeswax, but scientists don't know when the relationship between early farmers and bees began.
Composed of complex lipids, beeswax is highly stable in composition and can be used as a chemical fingerprint of archaeological artifacts, including pottery, and as an indicator of the presence of bees. Mélanie Roffet-Salque and research team at the University of Bristol, UK, have created a map of the relationship between prehistoric honeybees and farmers in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa using lipid residues collected from 6,400 clay pots.
The oldest evidence of beeswax comes from Neolithic sites in Asia Minor, dating back to 7000 BC, and the team also found the earliest evidence of human use of bees in North Africa, the researchers said.
The lack of evidence for beeswax at Neolithic sites crossing Denmark north of the 57th parallel may suggest that there was an ecological limit to the natural occurrence of bees at the time, which may be related to the harsh high-latitude environment. The study provides the first macromolecule-based paleo-ecological map of the economically and culturally important insect, the honeybee, and shows that the cooperative relationship between humans and bees dates back to the origins of agriculture.
Beeswax is widely used in candle processing industry, wax painting, batik, printing ink, bronze casting by lost wax method, painting and calligraphy mounting, etc. Because beeswax is relatively inert, easy to maintain shape at low temperature, waterproof, and insect-proof, etc., many handicrafts made of beeswax can be preserved from ancient times to the present. But at present, beeswax resources are in short supply and expensive, which cannot meet the requirements of the ink industry.
Beeswax polishes leather, furniture wood, walls or marble, and can be used as a finish for stringed instruments such as cellos and violins. The woodcarver inserts the chisel into the beeswax and uses it, and the chisel will fit better with the wood. Passing sail and shoe thread through the wax block while sewing increases its toughness and water resistance.
Beeswax is still used today in dentistry, ski waxing, animal cracked hoof treatment, soap making, shaving cream, crayons, cheese waxing, poultry plucking wax, ammo caps, gun ball wax, tablet coating, rectal suppositories, compound keys Impressions, bait, fishing line, etc. used at the time.
Beeswax as the main raw material can make various types of candles. Beeswax is also widely used in tanning industry, oil industry, paper industry, printing industry, electric power industry, electronic industry and candle industry.