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History of Vegetarianism - Europe: The Middle Ages to the 18th Century
Luigi Cornaro (1465-1566)


Luigi Cornaro was an Italian dietician born in Venice, who wrote books on a sober way of life, the last of them being published when he was ninety-tree years old. He was a follower of a simple vegetarian diet and his meals often consisted in dry bread and egg yolk. He was a severe critic of the gluttony of the banquets of his time. In A Treatise on a Sober Life (Trattato della Vita Sobria, 1548) he writes:

“O wretched and unhappy Italy! Can you not see that gluttony murders every year more of your inhabitants than you could lose by the most cruel plague or by fire and sword in many battles? Those truly shameful feats, now so much in fashion and so intolerably profuse that no tables are large enough to hold the infinite number of the dishes-those feasts, I say, are many battles”. (Quoted by Howard Williams in The Ethics of Diet, University of Illinois Press, 2003, p. 85)

[info from Nuno Metello, Portugal] 

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