Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Vegitable Slaughterer

Some would say vegetarian is an old Native American word meaning lousy hunter.  Disappointingly, that's not in fact true.  A vegetarian is someone who slaughters and kills fruits, and vegetables for the enjoyment of eating them.  Most people believe the word is derived from the word vegetable but in fact the word was coined by the founders of the British Vegetarian Society in 1842 and comes from the Latin word vegetus, meaning fresh or lively.  The word implies a mentally and physically vigorous person and a balanced lifestyle, not just a lack of meat.

The earliest records of vegetarianism come from ancient India and ancient Greece in the 6th century BC. The diet was closely connected with the idea of non-violence towards animals and was promoted by religious groups and philosophers.  Later vegetarianism fell out of fashion in Europe although in the middle ages  Several orders of European monks practised it for ascetic reasons, but none of them eschewed fish.  The medieval definition of "fish" included all water living animals such as: seals, porpoises, dolphins, barnacle geese, puffins, and beavers.  Yes, medieval vegetarians feasted on the flesh of dolphins and cuddly seals.

The word vegan was originally derived from the first three and last two letters of the word vegetarian in 1944 when people, frustrated at the inclusion of dairy in vegetarian diets, formed the UK Vegan Society.  A popular tattoo for vegans appears to be the word "VEGAN" inside their lower lip.  Ironically the vast majority of tattoo ink brands use animal glycerins.  Also one of the most commonly used ink pigments is derived from animal bones.
...and there they put it, inside their mouths.

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