An Account of English Ants; Which Contains 1. Their different Species and Mechanism. 11. Their manner of Government, and a Description of their several Queens. 111. The Production of their Eggs, and Process of the Young. 1V. The incessant Labours of the Workers or common Ants. With Many other Curiosities observable in these surprising Insects.
London : Printed for A. Millar, opposite Katharine Street in the Strand. 1747. Cr. 8vo, A-H8 (lacking H8, adverts?), uncut, (170x110mm), old paper bds, rebacked, new paper label, sound.
The pioneering study of what was to become the most studied of all classes of insects. Gould, whose observations and extrapolations have, for the most part, remained valid to this day, got into some trouble with his contemporaries for his perceived denial of the Bible, specifically Proverbs 6: 6-8 where it says "Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways and be wise; which having no chief, overseer, or ruler, provideth her bread in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest."
He maintained, correctly, that there was no evidence to suggest that ants stored grain for the winter. Gould is lauded in W.H.Hudson’s Hampshire Days as ‘- the first man in England to observe the habits of insects”. Horace Donithorpe (1870-1951) describes him as The Father of British Myrmecology
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