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The Ethics of Diet - A Catena
by Howard Williams M.A., 1883


Parallel Lives, Amyot translation, 1565

Plutach - extracts

PLUTARCH, 40-120 A.D. (?)
(text from the 1st edition, 1883 )

The years of the birth and death of the first of biographers and the most amiable of moralists are unknown. We learn from himself that he was studying philosophy at Athens under Ammonius, the Peripatetic, at the time when Nero was making his ridiculous progress through Greece. This was in 66 A.D., and the date of his birth may therefore be approximately placed somewhere about the year 40. He was thus a younger contemporary of Seneca. Chæronea, Bœtia, claims the honour of giving him birth.

He lived several years at Rome and in other parts of Italy, where, according to the fashion of the age and the custom of the philosophic rhetoricians (of whom, probably, he was one of the very few whose prœlections were of any real value), he gave public lectures, attended by the most eminent literary as well as social personages of the time, among whom were Tacitus, the younger Pliny, Quintilian, and perhaps Juvenal. These lectures may have formed the basis, if not the entire matter, of the miscellaneous essays which he afterwards published. When in Italy he neglected altogether the Latin language and literature, and the reason he gives proves the estimation in which he was held : "I had so many public commissions, and so many people came to me to receive instruction in philosophy.. . . . it was, therefore, not till a late period in life that I began to read the Latin writers." In fact, the very general indifference, or at least silence, of the Greek masters in regard to Latin literature is not a little remarkable.

It is asserted, on doubtful authority (Suidas), that he was preceptor of Trajan, in the beginning of whose reign he held the high post of Procurator of Greece; and he also filled the honourable office of Archon, or Chief Magistrate of his native city, as well as of priest of the Delphic Apollo. He passed the later and larger portion of his life in quiet retirement at Chæronea. The reason he assigns for clinging to that dull and decaying provincial town, although residence there was not a little inconvenient for him, is creditable to his citizen-feeling, since he believed that by quitting it he, as a person of influence, might contribute to its ruin. In all the relations of social life Plutarch appears to have been exemplary, and he was evidently held in high esteem by his fellow- citizens. As husband and father he was particularly admirable. The death of a young daughter, one of a numerous progeny, was the occasion of one of his most affecting productions - the Consolation - addressed to his wife Timoxena. He himself dies at an advanced age, in the reign of Hadrian.

Plutarch's writings are sufficiently numerous. The Parallel Lives, forty-six in number, in which he brings together a Greek and a Roman celebrity by way of comparison, is perhaps the book of Greek and Latin literature which has been the most widely read in all languages. "The reason of its popularity," justly observes a writer in Dr. Smith's Dictionary, "is that Plutarch has rightly conceived the business of a biographer - his biography is true portraiture. Other biography is often a dull, tedious enumeration of facts in the order of time, with perhaps a summing up of character at the end. The reflections of Plutarch are neither impertinent nor trifling; his sound good sense is always there; his honest purpose is transparent; his love of humanity warms the whole. His work is an will remain, in spite of all the fault that can be found with it by plodding collectors of facts and and small critics, the book of those who can nobly think and dare to do."

His miscellaneous writings - indiscriminately classed under the title Moralia, or Morals, but including historical, antiquarian, literary, political, and religious disquisitions - are about eighty in number. As might be expected of so miscellaneous a collection, these essays are of various merit, and some of them are, doubtless the product of other minds than Plutarch's. Next to the Essay on Flesh Eating (1) may be distinguished as amongst the most important or interesting, That the Lower Animals Reason, (2) On the Sagacity of the Lower Animals - highly meritorious treatises, far beyond the ethical or intellectual standard of the mass of "educated" people even of our day - Rules for Preservation of Health, A Discourse on the Training of Children, Marriage Precepts, or advice to the Newly Married, On Justice, On the Soul, Symposiacs - in which he deals with a variety of interesting or curious questions - Isis and Osiris, a theological disquisition; On the Opinions of the Philosophers, On the Face that Appears in the Moon, (3) Political Precepts, Platonic Questions, and last, not least, his Consolation, addressed to Timoxena. Plutarch also wrote his autobiography. If it had come down to us it would have been one of the most interesting remains of Antiquity, dealing as we may well imagine it did deal, with some of the most important phenomena of the age, Possibly we might have had the expression of his feelings and attitude in regard to the new religion (established some 200 years later), which, strangely enough, is altogether overlooked or ignored as well by himself as by the other eminent writers of Greece and Italy. (4)

Plutarch was an especial admirer of Plato and his school, but he attached himself exclusively to no sect or system. He was essentially eclectic: he chose what his reason and conscience informed him to be the most good and useful from the various philosophies. As to the influence of his literary labours in instructing the world, it has been truly remarked by the author of the article in the Penny Cyclopœdia that, "a kind, humane disposition, and a love of everything that is ennobling and excellent, pervades his writings, and gives the reader the same kind of pleasure that he has in the company of an esteemed friend, whose singleness of heart appears in everything that he says or does." His personal character is, in fact, exactly reflected in his publications. That he was somewhat superstitious and of a conservative bias is sufficiently apparent; (5) but it is also equally clear, in his case, that the moral perceptions were not obscured by a selfishness which is too often the product of optimism, or self- complacent contentment with things as they are. In metaphysics, with all earnest minds oppressed by the terrible fact of the dominance of evil and error in the world, he vainly attempted to find a solution of the enigma in that prevalent Western Asiatic prejudice of a dualism of contending powers. He found consolation in the persuasion that the two antagonistic principles are not of equal power, and that the Good must eventually prevail over the Evil.

The Lives has gone through numerous editions in all languages. Of the Morals, the first translation in this country was made by Philemon Holland, M.D., London, 1603 and 1657. The next English version was published in 1684-1694, "by several hands." The fifth edition, "revised and corrected from many errors of the former edition," appeared in 1718. The latest English version is that of Professor Goodwin, of Harvard University (1870), with an introduction by R. W. Emerson. It is, for the most part, a reprint of the revision of 1718, and consists of five octavo volumes. It is a matter equally for surprise and regret that, in an age of so much literary, or at least publishing, enterprise, a judicious selection from the productions of so estimable a mind has never yet been attempted in a form accessible to ordinary readers. (6)

In his Symposium, discussing (Quest. ii.), "whether the sea or land affords the better food," and summing up the arguments, he proceeds :-

"We can claim no great right over land animals which are nourished with the same food, inspire the same air, wash in and drink the same water that we do ourselves; and when they are slaughtered they make us ashamed of our work by their terrible cries; and then, again, by living amongst us they arrive at some degree of familiarity and intimacy with us. But sea creatures are altogether strangers to us, and are brought up, as it were, in another world. neither does their voice, look, or any service they have done us plead for their life. This kind of animals are of no use at all to us, nor is there any obligation upon us that we should love them. The element we inhabit is a hell to them, and as soon as they enter upon it they die."

We may infer that Plutarch advanced gradually to the perfect knowledge of the truth, and it is probable that his essay on Flesh-eating was published at a comparatively late period in his life, since in some of his miscellaneous writings, in alluding to the subject, he speaks in less decided and emphatic terms of its barbarism and inhumanity : e.g., in his Rules for the Preservation of Health, while recommending moderation in eating, and professing abstinence from flesh, he does not so expressly denounce the prevalent practice. Yet he is sufficiently pronounced even here in favour of the reformed diet on the score of health :-

"Ill-digestion," says he, "is most to be feared after flesh-eating, for it very soon clogs us and leaves ill consequences behind it. It would be best to accustom oneself to eat no flesh at all, for the earth affords plenty enough of thing fit not only for nourishment but for delight and enjoyment; some of which you may eat without much preparation, and others you may make pleasant by adding various other things."

That the non-Christian humanitarian of the first century was far ahead - we will not say of his contemporaries, but of the common crowd of writers and speakers of the present age in his estimate of the just rights and position of the innocent non-human races - will be sufficiently apparent from the following extract from his remarkable essay entitled, That the Lower Animals Reason, to which Montaigne seems to have been indebted. The essay is in the form of a dialogue between Odysseus (Ulysses) and Gryllus, who is one of the transformed captives of the sorceress Circe (see Odyssey ix) Gryllus maintains the superiority of the non-human races generally in many qualities and in regard to many of their habits - e.g., in eating and drinking :-

"Being thus wicked and incontinent in inordinate desires, it is no less easy to be proved that men are more intemperate than other animals even in those things which are necessary - e.g., in eating and drinking - the pleasures of which we [the non-human races] always enjoy with some benefit to ourselves. But you, pursuing the pleasure of eating and drinking beyond the satisfaction of nature, are punished with many and lingering diseases (7) which arising from the single fountain of superfluous gourmandising fill your bodies with all manner of wind and vapours not easy for purgation to expel. In the first place, all species of the lower animals, according to their kind, feed upon one sort of food which is proper to their natures - some upon grass, some upon roots, and others upon fruits. Neither do they rob the weaker of their nourishment. But man, such is his voracity, falls upon all to satisfy the pleasures of his appetite, tries all things, tastes all things; and, as if he were yet to seek what was the most proper diet and most agreeable to his nature, among all animals is the only all-devourer (8) He makes use of flesh not out of want and necessity, seeing that he has the liberty to make his choice of herbs and fruits, the plenty of which is inexhaustible; but out of luxury and being cloyed with necessaries, he seeks after impure and inconvenient diet, purchased by the slaughter of living beings; by this showing himself more cruel than the most savage of wild beasts. For blood, murder, and flesh are proper to nourish the kite, the wolf, and the serpent : to men they are superfluous viands. The lower animals abstain from most of other kinds and are at enmity with only a few, and that only compelled by necessities of hunger; but neither fish, nor fowl, nor anything that lives upon the land escapes your tables, though they bear the name of humane and hospitable."

Reprobating the harshness and inhumanity of Cato and the Censor, who is usually regarded as the type of old Roman virtue, Plutarch, with his accustomed good feeling declares :-

"For my part, I cannot but charge his using his servants like so many horses and oxen, or turning them off or selling them when grown old, to the account of a mean and ungenerous spirit, which thinks that the sole tie between man and man is interest or necessity. But goodness moves in a larger sphere the [so-called] justice. The obligations of law and equity reach only to mankind, but kindness and beneficence should be extended to beings of every species. And these always flow from the breast of a well-natured man, as streams that flow from the living fountain.

A good man will take care of his horses and dogs, not only while they are young, but when old and past service. Thus the people of Athens, when they had finished the temple of Hecatompedon, set at liberty the lower animals that had been chiefly employed in that work, suffering them to pasture at large, free from any further service. . . . We certainly ought not to treat living beings like shoes or household goods, which, when worn out with use, we throw away; and were it only to learn benevolence to human kind, we should be compassionate to other beings. For my own part, I would not sell even a little money, a man, grown old in my service, from his accustomed place - for to him, poor man, it would be as bad as banishment, since he could be of no more use to the buyer than he was to the seller. But Cato, as if he took a pride in these things, tells us that, when Consul, he left his war-horse in Spain, to save the public the charge of his freight. Whether such things as these are instances of greatness or of littleness of soul, let the reader judge for himself.' " (9)

If we shall compare these sentiments of the pagan humanitarian with the every-day practices of modern christian society in the matter, e.g., of "knackers' yards," and other similar methods of getting rid of dumb dependants after a life-time of continuous hard labour - perhaps of bad usage, and even semi starvation - the comparison scarcely will be in favour of christian ethics. From the essay On Flesh-Eating we extract the principal and most significant passages :-


PLUTARCH - ESSAY ON FLESH-EATING

"You ask me upon what grounds Pythagoras abstained from feeding on the flesh of animals. I, for my part, marvel of what sort of feeling, mind, or reason, that man was possessed who was the first to pollute his mouth with gore, and to allow his lips to touch the flesh of a murdered being; who spread his table with the mangled forms of dead bodies, and claimed as his daily food what were but now beings endowed with movement, with perception, and with voice.

"How could his eyes endure the spectacle of the flayed and dismembered limbs? How could his sense of smell endure the horrid effluvium? How, I ask, was his taste not sickened by contact with festering wounds, with the pollution of corrupted blood and juices? 'The very hides began to creep, and the flesh, both roast and raw, groaned on the spits, and the slaughtered oxen were endowed, as it might seem, with human voice' (10). This is poetic fiction; but the actual feast of ordinary life is, of a truth, a veritable portent - that a human being should hunger after the flesh of oxen actually bellowing before him, and teach upon what parts one should feast, and lay down elaborate rules about joints and roastings and dishes. The first man who set the example of this savagery is the person to arraign; not, assuredly, that great mind [Pythagoras] which, in a later age, determined to have nothing to do with such horrors.

"For the wretches who first applied to flesh-eating may justly be alleged in excuse their utter resourcelessness and destitution, inasmuch as it was not to indulge in lawless desires, or amidst the superfluities of necessaries, for the pleasure of wanton indulgence in unnatural luxuries that they [the primaeval peoples] betook themselves to carnivorous habits

"If they could now assume consciousness and speech the might exclaim, 'O blest and God-loved men who live at this day! What a happy age in the world's history has fallen to your lot who plant and reap an inheritance of all good things which grow for you in ungrudging abundance! What rich harvests do you not gather in? What wealth from the plains, what innocent pleasures is it not in your power to reap from the rich vegetation surrounding you on all sides! You may indulge in luxurious food without staining your hands with innocent blood. While as for us wretches, our lot was cast in an age of the world the most savage and frightful conceivable. We were plunged into the midst of an all-prevailing and fatal want of the commonest necessaries of life from the period of the earth's first genesis, while yet the gross atmosphere of the globe hid the cheerful heavens from view, while the stars were yet wrapped in a dense and gloomy mist of fiery vapours, and the sun [earth] itself had no firm and regular course. Our globe was then a savage and uncultivated wilderness, perpetually overwhelmed with the floods of the disorderly rivers, abounding in shapeless and impenetrable morasses and forests. Not for us the gathering in of domestic fruits; no mechanical instrument of any kind wherewith to fight against nature. Famines gave us no time, nor could there be any periods of seed-time and harvest.

"What wonder, then, if, contrary to nature, we had recourse to the flesh of living beings, when all our other means of subsistence consisted in wild corn [or a sort of grass - Greek], and the bark of trees, and even slimy mud, and when we deemed ourselves fortunate to find some chance wild root or herb? When we tasted an acorn or beech-nut we danced with grateful joy around the tree, hailing it as our bounteous mother and nurse. Such was the gala-feast of those primeval days, when the whole earth was one universal scene of passion and violence, engendered by the struggle for the very means of existence.

" 'But what struggle for existence, or what goading madness has incited you to imbue your hands in blood - you who have we repeat, a superabundance of all the necessaries and comforts of existence? Why do you belie the earth [Greek] as though it were unable to feed and nourish you? Why do you despite to the bounteous [goddess] Ceres, and blaspheme the sweet and mellow gifts of Bacchus, as though you received not a sufficiency from them?

"Does it not shame you to mingle murder and blood with their beneficent fruits? Other carnivora you call savage and ferocious - lions and tigers and serpents - while yourselves come behind them in no species of barbarity. And yet for them murder is the only means of sustenance; whereas to you it is a superfluous luxury and crime!

"For, in point of fact, we do not kill and eat lions and wolves, as we might do in self-defence - on the contrary, we leave them unmolested; and yet the innocent and the domesticated and helpless and unprovided with weapons of offence - these we hunt and kill, whom Nature seems to have brought into existence for their beauty and gracefulness. . . .

"Nothing puts us out of countenance [Greek], not the charming beauty of their form, not the plaintive sweetness of their voice or cry, not their mental intelligence [Greek], not the purity of their diet, not superiority of understanding. For the sake of a part of their flesh only, we deprive them of the glorious light of the sun - of the life, for which they were born. The plaintive cries they utter we affect to take to be meaningless; whereas, in fact, they are entreaties and supplications and prayers addressed to us by each which say, 'It is not the satisfaction of your real necessities we deprecate, but the wanton indulgence of your appetites. Kill to eat, if you must or will, but do not slay me that you may feed luxuriously.'

"Alas for our savage inhumanity! It is a terrible thing to see the table of rich men decked out by those layers-out of corpses: the butchers and cooks; a still more terrible sight is the same table after the feast - for the wasted relics are even more than the consumption. These victims, then, have given us their lives uselessly. As other times, from mere niggardliness, the host will grudge to distribute his dishes, and yet he grudged not to deprive innocent beings of their existence!

"Well I have taken away the excuse of those who allege that they have the authority and sanction of Nature. For that man is not, by nature, carnivorous is proved, in the first place, by the external frame of his body - seeing that to none of the animals designed for living on flesh has the human body any resemblance. He has no curved beak, no sharp talons and claws, no pointed teeth, no intense power of stomach or heat of blood which might help him to masticate and digest the gross and tough flesh-substance. On the contrary, by the smoothness of his teeth, the small capacity of his mouth, the softness of his tongue, and the sluggishness of his digestive apparatus, Nature sternly forbids him to feed on flesh.

"If, in spite of all this, you still affirm that you were, to begin with, kill yourself what you wish to eat - but do it yourself with your own natural weapons, without the use of butcher's knife, or axe, or club. No; as the wolves and lions and bears themselves slay all they feed on, so, in like manner, do you kill the cow or ox with a grip of your jaw, or the pig with your teeth, or a hare or a lamb by falling upon and rending them there and then. Having gone through all these preliminaries, then sit down to your repast. If, however, you wait until the living and intelligent existence be deprived of life, and if it would disgust you to have to rend out the heart and shed the life-blood of your victim, why, I ask, in the very face of Nature, and in despite of her, do you feed on beings endowed with sentient life? But more than this - not even, after your victims have been killed, will you eat them just as they are from the slaughter-house. You boil, roast, and altogether metamorphose them by fire and condiments. You entirely alter and disguise the murdered animal by use of ten thousand sweet herbs and spices, that your natural taste may be deceived and be prepared to take the unnatural food. A proper and witty rebuke was that of the Spartan who bought a fish and gave it to his cook to dress. When the latter asked for butter, and olive oil, and vinegar, he replied, 'Why, if I had all these things I should not have bought the fish!'

"To such a degree do we make luxuries of bloodshed that we call flesh a 'delicacy', and forthwith require delicate sauces for this same flesh-meat, and mix together oil and wine and pickle and vinegar with all the spices of Syria and Arabia - for all the world as though we were embalming a human corpse. After all these heterogeneous matters have been mixed and dissolved and, in a manner, corrupted, it is for the stomach, forsooth, to masticate and assimilate them - if it can. And though this may be, for the time, accomplished, the natural sequence is a variety of diseases produced by imperfect digestion and repletion. (11)

"Diogenes (the Cynic) had the courage, on one occasion, to swallow a polypus without any cooking preparation, to dispense with the time and trouble expended in the kitchen. In the presence of a numerous concourse of priests and others, unwrapping the morsel from his tattered cloak, and putting it to his lips, 'For your sakes,' cried he, 'I perform this extravagant action and incur this danger.' A self-sacrifice truly meritorious! Not like Pelopidas, for the freedom of Thebes, or like Harmodius and Aristogeiton, on behalf of the citizens of Athens, did the philosopher submit to this hazardous experiments; for he acted thus that he might unbarbarise, if possible, the life of human kind.

"Flesh-eating is not unnatural to our physical constitution only. The mind and intellect are made gross by gorging and repletion ; for flesh meat and wine may possibly tend to robustness of the body, but it gives only feebleness to the mind. Not to incur the resentment of the prize-fighters [the athletes], I will avail myself of examples nearer home. The wits of Athens, it is well known, bestow on us Bœtians the epithets 'gross,' 'dull-brained,' and 'stupid,' chiefly on account of our gross feeding. We are even called 'hogs.' Menander nicknames us the 'jaw-people [Greek]'. Pindar has it that 'mind is very secondary consideration with them.' 'A fine understanding of clouded brilliancy' is the ironical phrase of Herakleitus. . . .

"Besides and beyond all these reasons, does it not seem admirable to foster habits of philanthropy? Who that is so kindly disposed towards beings of another species would ever be inclined to do injury to his own kind? I remember in conversation hearing, as a saying of Zenocrates, that Athenians imposed a penalty upon man for flaying a sheep alive, and he who tortures a living being is little worse (it seems to me) than he who needlessly deprives of life and murders outright. We have, it appears, clearer perceptions of what is contrary to propriety and custom than of what is contrary to nature . . . .

"Reason proves both by our thoughts and our desires that we are (comparatively) new to the reeking feasts [Greek] of kreophagy. Yet it is hard, as says Cato, to argue with stomachs, since they have no ears ; and the inebriating potion of custom (12) has been drunk like Circe's, with all its deceptions and witcheries. Now that men are saturated and penetrated, as it were, with love of pleasure, it is not an easy task to attempt to pluck out from their bodies the flesh-baited hook. Well would it be if, as the people of Egypt turning their back to the pure light of day disembowelled their dead and cast away the offal as the very source and origin of their sins. we, too, in like manner, were to eradicate bloodshed and gluttony from ourselves and purify the remainder of our lives. If the irreproachable diet be impossible to any by reason of inveterate habit, at least let them devour their flesh as driven to it by hunger, not in luxurious wantonness, but with feelings of shame. Slay your victim, but at least do so with feelings of pity and pain, not with callous heedlessness and with torture, And yet that is what is done in a variety of ways.

"In slaughtering swine, for example, they thrust red hot irons into their living bodies, so that by sucking up or diffusing the blood, they may render the flesh soft and tender. Some butchers jump upon or kick the udders of pregnant sows, that by mingling the blood and milk and matter of the embryos that have been murdered together in the very pangs of parturition, they may enjoy the pleasure of feeding upon unnaturally and highly inflamed flesh! (13) Again, it is a common practice to stitch up the eyes of cranes and swans and shut them up in dark places to fatten. In this and other similar ways are manufactured their dainty dishes, with all the varieties of sauces and spices, from all of which it is evident that men have indulged their lawless appetites in the pleasures of luxury, not for necessary food and from no necessity, but only out of the merest wantonness, and gluttony, and display. . . . . " (14)

     

    Footnotes

    1. This essay ranks among the most valuable productions that have come down to us from antiquity. Its sagacious anticipation of the modern argument from comparative physiology and anatomy, as well as the earnestness and true feeling of its eloquent appeal to the higher instincts of human nature, gives it a special interest and importance. We have therefore placed it separately at the end of this article.
    2. [Greek] - "An Essay to prove that the Lower Animals reason."
    3. This essay is remarkable as being, perhaps, the first speculation as to the existence of other worlds than ours.
    4. As regards this complete silence of Plutarch, it may be attributed to his eminently conservative temperament, which shrank from an exclusive system that so completely broke with the sacred traditions of "the venerable past." Besides, Christianity had not assumed the imposing proportions of the age of Lucian, whose indifference is therefore more surprising than that of Plutarch.
    5. See, for example, the Isis and Osiris, 49. And yet, with Francis Bacon, and Bayle, and Addison, he prefers Atheism to fanatical Superstition.
    6. Of the many eminent and persons who have been indebted to, or who have professed the greatest admiration for, the writings of Plutarch are Eusebius, who places him at the head of all Greek philosophers. Origen, Theodoret, Aulus Gellius, Photius, Suidas, Lipsius. Theodore of Gaza, when asked what writer he would first save from a general conflagration of libraries, answered "Plutarch; for he considered his philosophical writings the most beneficial to society, and the best substitute for all other books." Amongst moderns, Montaigne, Montesquieu, Voltaire, and especially Rousseau, recognise him as one of the first of moralists.
    7. See Milton (Paradise Lost xi.), and Shelley (Queen Mab).
    8. Cf. Pope :- "Of half that live, the butcher and the tomb." - Moral Essays
    9. Parallel Lives : Cato the Censor. Translated by John and William Langhorne, 1826.
    10. See Odyssey, xii, 895, of the oxen of the sun impiously slaughtered by the companions of Ulysses
    11. "Hine subitæ mortes, atque intestata Senectus." - "hence sudden deaths, and age without a will." Juvenal, Sat. I.
    12. "The anarch Custom's reign."
      - Shelley: Revolt of Islam.
    13. Such it seems, were some of the popular methods of torture in the Slaughter Houses in the first century of our era. Whether the "calf-bleeding," and the preliminary operations which produces the paté de foie gras, &c., or the older methods, bear away the palm for ingenuity in culinary torture, may be a question.
    14. See [Greek] - in the Latin title, De Esu Carnium - "on Flesh Eating," Parts 1 and 2. We shall here add the authority of Pliny, who professes his conviction that "the plainest food is the most beneficial." (Hist. Nat. xi., 117); and asserts that it is from his eating that man derives most of his diseases. (xxv., 28.) Compare the feeling of Ovid, who we have already quoted - Metamorphoses xv. We may here refer our readers also to the celebration, by the same poet, of the innocent and peaceful gifts of Ceres, and of the superiority of her pure table and altar - Fasti iv, 895-416.

      Pace, Ceres, lœta est. At vos optate, Coloni,
      Perceptuam pacem, perceptuumque ducem.
      Farra Deæ, micæque licet salientis honorem
      Detis: et in veteres thuie: grana focos.

 

  • Plutarch's Morals Vol.5 (PDF 27mb) - edited by W. W. Goodwin Ph.D, Harvard, 1878. Includes the essay 'Of Eating Flesh'

 

Howard Williams, The Ethics of Diet - index