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from milk, roots and vegetables, now require, every day, a considerable portion of the Aesh of animals. Hence a great part of the richest lands of the country are converted to pasturage. Much, allso, of the bread-corn, which went directly to the nourishment of human bodys, now onely contributes to it, by fatening the Aeth of sheep and oxen. The mass and volume of provisions are hereby diminish'd; and what is gain' in the melioration of the soil is lost in the quality of . the produce. *
* Paleys Principles of moral and political philofopby, II, 361.
ANIMAL FOOD THE CAUSE OF CRUELTY AND
That the use of animal food dispołes man to cruel and ferocious actions is a f ct to which the texperience of ageës gives ample testimony. The Scythians, from drinking the blood of their cattle, proceeded to drink that of their enemys.* The fierce and cruel disposition of the wild Arabs is suppose’d, chiefly, if not, folely, to proceed froin their feeding upon the flesh of camels :t and, as the gentle disposition of the natives is probablely oweing, in a great degree, to temperance, and a total abstinence from animal food; so the common use of this diet, in the bulk of other nations, has, in the opinion of M. Pagés, exalted the natural tone of their passions ; and he can account, he says, upon no other prin. ciple for the firong harsh features of the Musulmans and Christians, compare'd with the small trait and placid aspect of the Gentoos. I “ Vul,
· * Herodotus, B. 4; Revelation examine’d, p. 21,
Travels round the world, II, 44.
FEROCITY. 87 gar and uninform’d men,” it is obferve'd by Smellie, “ when pamper'd with a variety of animal food, are much more cholerick, fierce and cruel in their tempers than those who live chiefly on vegetables.” This affection is equally percertible in other animals : “ An officer, in the Russian service, had a bear, which he fed with bread and oats, but never gave him flesh. However, a young hog hapening, one day, to stroll too near his cel, he got hold of it, and pul'd it in; and, after he had once drawn blood, and tasteëd flesh, he grew fo fierce that he became unmanageable, attacking every body that came near him ; so that the owner was oblige'd to kil him."* It was not, says Porphyry, from those who live'd on vegetables, that robers or murderers, fycophants, or tyrants, have proceeded, but from flesh-eaters. t Prey being allmost the fole object of quarrel among carni.
* Memoirs of P. H. Brucè, p. 144. A similar instance has been relateëd, to the compileër, of a mastif: all animals, in short, that feed upon blood, are observe’d to be much more furious than others : wil any man, therefor, say that much of his own fury is not oweing to the same food ? (Rev:lation examine’d, p. 21.) “ I have known,” says doctor Arbuthnot,“ more than one instance of irascible passions being much subdue’d by a vegetable diet.", (Essay, p. 186.)
† Mackenzies History of bea!tb, p. 190..
vorous animals, while the frugivorous live together in constant peace and harmony, it is evident that, if men were of this last kind, they would find it much more easey to subfift in a state of nature, and have much less occasion to leave it.*
The barbarous and unfeeling sports (as they are calld) of the Engleish, their horse-raceing, hunting, shooting, bul and bear-baiting, cockfighting, boxing-matches, and the like, all proceed from their immoderate addiction to animal food. Their natural temper is thereby corrupted, and they are in the habitual and hourly commission of crimes against nature, justice, and humanity, at which a feeling and reflective mind, unaccustom'd to such a diet, would revolt; but in which they profess to take delight. The kings of Engleland have from a remote period been devotęëd to hunting ; in which pursuit one of them, and the son of another, lost his life. “ James the first,” according to Scaliger, “ was merciful, except at the chace, where he was cruel, was very goom catch the stag: God, me, so it is that i tha him, he would put belly and entrails of
* Rousseau, On the inequality of mankind, note 5.
dote may be parallel'd with the following, of one of his successours : “ The hunt on Tuesday last" (as stateëd in The General Advertiser, March 4, 1784) “ commence'd near Salthil, and afforded a chace of upward of fifty miles. His majesty was present at the death of the chace near Tring, in Hertfordshire. It is the first deer that has been run to death for many months; and, when open’d, its heart-firings were found to be quite rent, as is suppose’d, with the force of runing:"
The slave-trade, that abominable violation of the rights of nature, is, most probablely, oweing to the same cause; as wel as a variety of violent acts, both national and personal, which are usually atıributeëü to other motives. In the sesfions of parliament, 1802, a majority of the members voteëd for the continuance of bul-baiting,
* It has been pretended that Charles IX. was the authour of a book upon' hunting. It is very likely that, if this prince had less cultivateëd the art of kiling beasts, and had not acquire'd in the forests the habit of seeing blood run, there would have been more difficulty in geting from him the order of Saint Bartholomew. The chace is one of the most sure means for blunting in men the sentiment of pity for their fellow-creatures; an effectso much the more fatal, as those who are addicted to it, placed in a more elevateëd rank, have more need of this bridle. (Voltaire, Oeuvres, LXXII,213, note.)