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Pulse rate

Kicking off an extended food section. Philip Parr comes up with twenty things you never knew about vegetarianism and a list of key meat-free shops and restaurants.

1 The word ‘vegetarian‘ is not derived from ‘vegetable‘ but from the Latin ‘vegetus‘ meaning active or vigorous.

2 In 1981. the Encyclopaediu Britannica devoted one paragraph to vegetarianism. By 1985. this had grown to one page.

3 The first recorded veggie was Pythagoras. well known mathematician. who started castigating his fellow Greeks for their savagery in 530 BC.

4 The reason for his no-meat diet was that he believed he would be reincarnated as an animal. He also


gave up beans. but probably not for the same reason.

5 About the same time. Indian Buddhists. Jainists and Brahmans

started worshipping the cow and. i therefore. stopped eatingit.

6 They also gave up eggs and fish

which shames some of today's

veggies. but not one offshoot. frutarians. who live (usually fora limited period) on windfallen fruit alone.

7 Vegetarianism lost its way a little once Christianity became dominant. although Martin Luther. well known Christian. was a veggie partly for moral reasons and partly because of his acute constipation. Researchers should not be misled by a book entitled Martin Luther and the Diet of W arms.

8 A vegetarian society was formed in Britain in the middle ofthe 19th

century and marked the beginning of

modern vegetarianism. It was followed. in 1889. by the establishment of'l‘he International Federation of Vegetarian Societies. a body which still exists today.

9 Many of the early veggies were



also teetotal. 'l‘hen. it was a sign of general moral upstanding; now. it should really be compulsory because most modern brewers use fish bladders to stop beer becoming cloudy.

10 Voltaire. well-known beard. advocated vegetarianism as a sound

. philosophy. but for some reason

didn't practise it himself. 11 Shelley. well-known junkie. was a vegetarian when he was able to

. staggertothe dinnertable.

12 (iandhi. well-known leader of the Indian masses had his first crack at

politics when he became chairman of

the London branch of the Vegetarian Society in the 1880s.

13 Kellogg. of cornllakes fame. was a vegetarian. as was the inventor of peanut butter (who was almost certainly not called Sunpat).

14 The founder of(‘ranks (probably Britain‘s most famous vegetarian restaurant) died suddenly in his early 40s.

15 Famous vegetarians of the 20th

A century include: George Bernard

Shaw ( friend of Stalin). Leon

l Trotsky (enemy ofStalin) and

Adolph llitler (friend. then enemy ofStalin). Stalin liked his meat.

16 The largest single contributor to damage ofthe ozone layer is the farting ofcattlc.

17 If the farm land used for rearing cattle was given over to arable production. it would provide seven times as much protein.

18 Foods which veggies might think they can eat but can’t: l’olo mints. ice-cream. cheese. Worcester sauce. Big Macs.

19 Foods which veggies do eat. but nobody knows why: tofu burgers. tofu ice-cream. textured vegetable protein (chunks). live yoghurt. Wimpy Spicy Bean-burgers.

20 Vegetarian cliches: ‘No. it's not immoral to wear leather shoes because. . .‘z ‘Dollook ill'.": ‘Pass me my B 1?. supplement would you’.


I Basil's 18-1 [)umbarton Road 337 1416. Mon—Fri 12—9pm. Fri—Sat ll—ll).3()pm. (ilasgow's only vegetarian restaurant. run as a co-operative. is bustling. informal and friendly and renowned for its

l l

The List 13 26 September lWl 67