Musingly he lit a cigarette. Through the open window a bee droned in on the blue air of evening. Closing his eyes he fell to considering whether the bee of one country would understand the remarks of that of another. The effect of the soil of a nation, had it consequences upon its flora? Were plants influenced at their roots? People sometimes spoke (and especially ladies) of the language of flowers . . . the pollen therefore of an English rose would probably vary, not inconsiderably, from that of a French, and a bee born and bred at home . . .would be at a loss to understand (it clearly followed) the conversation of one born and bred, here, abroad. A bee’s idiom varied then, as did man’s! And he wondered, this being proved the case, where the best bees’ accents were generally acquired.
Ronald Firbank, The Flower Beneath The Foot (1923)