A Vindication of Natural Diet

A Vindication of Natural Diet is an 1813 essay by Shelley Percy Bysshe on vegetarianism and animal rights. It was first written as part of the Queen Mab Notes, which was privately printed in 1813. Later in the year, it was published in a pamphlet.

Shelley wrote four essays on the subject of vegetarianism, “A Vindication of Natural Diet” (1813), the note in Queen Mab, a section of “A Refutation of Deism” (1814), and “On the Vegetable System of Diet” , which was published posthumously in 1929. Shelley first experimented with a vegetarian diet while at Oxford University according to Thomas Jefferson Hogg. Shelley began a vegetarian diet on March 1, 1812 with Harriet Westbrook. Shelley began composing the essay in October-November 1812. The work has been republished since 1813 beginning with an abridged version which was published in Boston by March, Capen, and Lyon in an American Vegetable Diet collection: As Sanctioned by Medical Men, and by Experience in All Ages, edited by William A. Alcott. The essay was reprinted in 1884 in a new edition in London by F. Pitman and by John Heywood and the Vegetarian Society in Manchester. The original title page was reproduced: ” A Vindication of Natural Diet. (London: Printed for J.Callow by Smith & Davy, 1813.) The New edition featured a preface by Henry Stephens Salt and William Axon. A second edition appeared in 1886. In 1904, the work was republished in London by CW Daniel A. A Vindication of Natural Diet and Extracts from the Works of Dr. Lambe, edited and annotated by FE Worland. (London: Printed for J.Callow by Smith & Davy, 1813.) The New edition featured a preface by Henry Stephens Salt and William Axon. A second edition appeared in 1886. In 1904, the work was republished in London by CW Daniel A. A Vindication of Natural Diet and Extracts from the Works of Dr. Lambe, edited and annotated by FE Worland. (London: Printed for J.Callow by Smith & Davy, 1813.) The New edition featured a preface by Henry Stephens Salt and William Axon. A second edition appeared in 1886. In 1904, the work was republished in London by CW Daniel A. A Vindication of Natural Diet and Extracts from the Works of Dr. Lambe, edited and annotated by FE Worland.

Shelley wrote in a Vindication of Natural Diet: “It is only by softening and disguising dead flesh by which it is rendered susceptible to chewing or digestion, and that the sight of its bloody juices and gross horror does not excite intolerable loathing and disgust. . ” Shelley used the imagery of slaughtering a lamb. In Queen Mab: A Philosophical Poem (1813) he wrote about the change to a vegetarian diet using the lamb imagery: “And man … no longer up / He slays the lamb that looks him in the face, / And horribly devours his mangled flesh. ” In the novel Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus (1818), which Shelley collaborated on, the Monster is portrayed as a vegetarian. The lamb imagery is retained. The Monster explained his vegetarian diet to Victor Frankenstein: “My food is not that of man. I do not destroy the lamb and the kid to glut my appetite; “In” The Sensitive Plant “,” The killing of all life forms, “” All killing insects and gnawing worms, ” which requires understanding rather than destruction, because what they do “they did not do, was innocent”. In Laon and Cythna, republished as The Revolt of Islam (1817), Fifth Canto, the Festival of Nations held after the Revolution is a banquet where no meat is served. The feast is vegetarian: “Never again can blood of bird or beast / Stain with its venomous stream a human feast”. This is “The banquet of the free” where the guests are described as “reclining as they ate, of Liberty, Shelley presented examples of a vegetarian diet led in longevity and an increased lifespan. The only threat of death will be that of natural, old age. The two rules he prescribes for a natural diet.

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