Timeline of vegetarianism and veganism
|Time period||Development summary|
|18th century||"Historian Dr Catherine Oliver suggests that 18th Century philosopher Jeremy Bentham is the earliest notable proponent of likening animal suffering to that of humans: “The question is not ‘can they reason?’ Nor, ‘can they talk?’ But, ‘can they suffer?’ Dr Oliver told The Independent that veganism today is being increasingly situated “not as a diet but as a social justice issue”."|
|19th century||Vegetarianism establishes itself as a significant movement in England and the United States.|
|21st century||The vegan diet becomes increasingly mainstream in the 2010s. especially in the latter half.|
|3300 BC–1300 BC||The practice of veganism is already identified in the Indus Valley Civilization in the Indian subcontinent particularly in northern and western ancient India.||India|
|877 BC–777 BC||Early Jain called Parshvanatha teaches followers about ahimsa (non-violence), one of the cornerstone beliefs meaning non-violence to living forms.||India|
|520BC||"CYRUS THE GREAT (520 B.C. born) Emperor of Persia, who conquered many lands and raised Persia from an obscure country into a great Empire was not only vegetarian himself but ordered his soldiers also strictly to adhere to this diet. His army conquered wherever it went, Xenophen says that Cyrus was brought up upon a diet of bread, cresses, and water till the age of fifteen, when honey and raisins were added."|
|500 BC||Greek philosopher Pythagoras promotes benevolence among all species and follows what could be described as a vegetarian diet. " In 500 BCE, the Greek mathematician Pythagoras advocated the idea that all animals had immortal souls which would be reincarnated after death. He shunned harming animals and along with the mythical poet Orpheus, also abstained from eggs. "||Greece|
|484BC–425BC||"HERODOTUS (484-425 B.C.) - the Father of History; a very abstemious vegetarian, often partaking of but one meal per day and that of parched wheat and fruit. He abhorred the killing of the innocent grazing herds, still more the bloody sacrifices seen about the Temples, and still more the eating of the flesh sacrificed to the Gods."|
|221BC–206BC||"Chin Dynasty was very short (221 BC -206 BC). A general killed the emperor and the other general built Han Dynasty replaced Chin Dynasty. During Han Dynasty (206 BC until 221), vegetarianism was back. It was because the Buddhism Missionaries started to come to China from India (68)."||China|
|106BC–423BC||Roman statesman Cicero states:"Man is destined to a better occupation than that of pursuing and cutting the throat of dumb creatures." And, " Nothing cruel is useful or expedient."|
|43BC–18AD||"OVID (43 B.C. to 18 A.D.) - a popular Roman poet, wrote in a day when it was considered a fine spectacle for men and animals to fight together till the death. Of Pythagoras he said:"|
|5BC–65AD||"SENECA [5 B.C.- 65 A.D.] One of the most eminent of the Roman Stoics, Tutor of young Nero and his chief advisor, an ardent vegetarian, created a vegetarian cult in the Court at the time of the most voluptuous period in history. But since the early Christians mere vegetarian, the Emperor's suspicions were aroused that Seneca also was a Christian, and so Seneca returned to flesh-eating. Later still Nero condemned him to death through jealousy of his musical performances in which Nero alone wished to excel, so his martyrdom might have come the sooner and in a better cause. However, some of the finest passages written on this subject have been by Seneca"|
|40AD–120AD||"PLUTARCH (40 to 120 A.D. approx.) Prince of Biographers and Historians. His essay on flesh eating contains arguments for vegetarianism not superseded. A few excerpts follow :" ""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!"|
|160AD–230AD||"TERTULLIAN (160-230 A.D.) of the Early Christian Fathers." ""It is in the cooking-pots that your love is inflamed - it is in the kitchen that your faith grows fervid - it is in the flesh dishes that all your hope lies hid... who is held in so much esteem with you as the frequent giver of dinners, as the sumtuous entertainer, as the practised toaster of healths?"|
|233AD–304AD||"PORPHYRY (233-304 A.D.) a great Greek Philosopher: "It is not from those who hare lived on innocent foods that murderers, tyrants, robbers, and sycophants have come, but from eaters of flesh. The necessaries of life are few and easily procured, without violation of justice, liberty, or peace of mind ; whereas luxury obliges these ordinary souls who take delight in it to covet riches, to give up their liberty, to sell justice, to misspend their time, to ruin their health, and to renounce the satisfaction of an upright conscience."|
|329AD–379AD|| SAINT BASILE THE GREAT, (320-79 A.D.) Bishop of Cesarea, adjures : "If one lives soberly. "The animals will be secure; they will never pour forth their blood; men will never cause beasts to die; the knives of cooks will be useless; and the table will be loaded with the fruits given us by nature, and we will be content."
"There never was wine in the Terrestrial Paradise ; they never sacrificed animals ; they never ate meat ; wine was only invented after the Deluge," ||
|340AD–420AD||"SAINT JEROME (340-420 A.D.) Author of the Vulgate. "The use of the flesh of animals was unknown up to the Deluge; but after the Deluge, men put between their teeth the sinews and stinking juices of flesh. Jesus Christ.. . today does not permit us to eat flesh according to the Apostle (Rom XIV. 21). It is good never to drink wine, and never to eat flesh, for the use of wine has commenced with that of flesh after the Deluge." - Letter from St. Jerome to Eustoquie."|
|347–407||"CHRYSOSTUM (347-407 A.D.) Archbishop of Constantinople; whose attacks on sin in high places made him enemies at court and among the wealthy classes. Scourging the customs of his time, he said : "No streams of blood are among them (the ascetics); no butchering and cutting up of flesh; no dainty cookery; no heaviness of head. Nor are there the horrible smells of flesh meats atmong them, or disagreeable fumes from the kitchen. No tumult and disturbance and wearisome clamours, but bread and water - the latter from a pure fountain, the former from honest labour. If at any time, however, they wish to feast more sumptuously, the sumptuousness consists in fruits, and their pleasure in these is greater than at royal tables. No master and servant are there. All are servants - all are free men."|
|354–430||"ST. AUGUSTIN, (354-430 A. D.), Bishop of Hippo in Africa, calls attention to the abstinence of the Anchorites who "not only abstain from flesh and wine, but also from other viands. ..which flatter taste," He also quotes from St. Paul in I Corinthians VIII. 8 and also Rom. XIV 21 "that it is good never to eat meat and drink wine when by so doing we scandalize our brothers.""|
|520||"In 520, Boddhidharma, the 28th Master after Buddha, came from India and gave back The Way of Prophet. He taught Chan (or Zen in Japanese). Zen is the Real Teaching of Buddha, the Lost Teaching of Tao. Boddhidharma not only taught vegetarianism but also taught Zen monks the martial arts in Shao Lin temple for defense."||India|
|973–1057||Arab poet al-Maʿarri is recognized as one of the earliest known vegans.|
|1398||Indian mystic poet Kabir calls to compassion, condemning meat-eating and killing of animals no matter if it is permitted in the "Koran" or any other Scripture for "sacrificial" purposes.||India|
|1806||"Fast forward to 1806 CE and the earliest concepts of veganism are just starting to take shape, with Dr William Lambe and Percy Bysshe Shelley amongst the first Europeans to publicly object to eggs and dairy on ethical grounds."|
|1813||Literature||English poet Percy Bysshe Shelley publishes A Vindication of Natural Diet, advocating "abstinence from animal food and spirituous liquors".|
|1815||" in 1815, William Lambe, a London physician, claimed that his "water and vegetable diet" could cure anything from tuberculosis to acne."||United Kingdom|
|1839||"The term "vegetarian" has been in use since around 1839 to refer to what was previously described as a vegetable regimen or diet."|
|1850||Organization||The American Vegetarian Association in founded in New York.||United States|
|1882||Organization||The French Vegetarian Society is founded.||France|
|1883||Literature||English humanitarian Howard Williams published The Ethics of Diet, which is considered the first book on vegetarian history.|
|1884||Organization||The Hungarian Vegetarian Society is founded.||Hungary|
|1892||Organization||ProVeg Germany is founded.||Germany|
|1894||Organization||The Dutch Vegetarian League is founded.||Netherlands|
|1896||Organization||A vegetarian society is formed in Stockholm.||Sweden|
|1899||Organization||A Vegetarian Society is established at Milan.||Italy|
|1901||Organization||The Russian Vegetarian Society is formed.||Russia|
|1905||Organization||The Spanish Vegetarian Society is formed.||Spain|
|1906||Organization||The Greek Vegetarian Society is formed.||Greece|
|1908||Organization||The International Vegetarian Union is launched at an International Vegetarian Congress in Dresden, Germany.||Germany|
|1908||Organization||The World Esperantist Vegetarian Association is founded.|
|1935||The Vegetarian Society states: "The lacto-vegetarians, on the whole, do not defend the practice of consuming the dairy products except on the ground of expediency."|
|1943||Organization||The New Zealand Vegetarian Society is founded.||New Zeland|
|1944||"Donald Watson coined the term vegan in 1944 when he co-founded the Vegan Society" in England. At first he used it to mean "non-dairy vegetarian", "The term “veganism” itself however, was coined much more recently. In 1944, carpenter Donald Watson and his wife Dot invented the word to mark the “beginning and end of vegetarianism”. Watson decided to become a vegan after he saw and heard the death of a pig on his uncle’s farm."|
|1944||Organization||The Vegan Society is founded.|
|1945||" and by May 1945 vegans explicitly abstained from "eggs, honey; and animals' milk, butter and cheese"."|
|1951||"From 1951 the Society defined it as "the doctrine that man should live without exploiting animals". Interest in veganism increased in the 2010s," especially in the latter half.|
|1952||Organization||The Italian Vegetarian Association is founded.||Italy|
|1957||World Vegetarian Congress 1957|
|1960||Organization||The American Vegan Society is founded.||United States|
|1974||Organization||Hare Krishna Food for Life is founded as a nonprofit with the purpose "to bring peace and prosperity to the world through the liberal distribution of sanctified vegetarian meals".||India|
|1975||Organization||Jewish Veg is founded.|
|1975||Veganism||Literature||Peter Singer publishes Animal Liberation.|
|1978||Organization||The Dutch Society for Veganism is founded.||Netherlands|
|1980||Organization||People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)|
|1984||Vegetarianism||Literature||Daniel Dombrowski publishes The Philosophy of Vegetarianism.|
|1984||Organization||Movement for Compassionate Living is founded.|
|1984||Veganism||Literature||Brenda Davis publishes diet book Becoming Vegan.|
|1988||Organization||European Vegetarian Union is founded.||Netherlands|
|1993||Organization||Vegan Outreach is founded.||United States|
|1993||Organization||Swissveg is founded.||Switzerland|
|1994||Organization||Vegan Prisoners Support Group is founded.|
|1994||Organization||Association Végétarienne de France||France|
|1994||The World Vegan Day is first celebrated.|
|1995||Organization||Vegan Awareness Foundation is founded.||United States|
|1998||Veganism||Literature||Erik Marcus publishes Vegan: The New Ethics of Eating|
|1999||Organization||The Vegetarian Society (Singapore) is established.||Singapore|
|1999||Vegetarianism||Literature||Richard A. Young publishes Is God a Vegetarian? Christianity, Vegetarianism, and Animal Rights.|
|1999||Literature||Lisa Portmess and Kerry S. Walters publish Ethical Vegetarianism: From Pythagoras to Peter Singer|
|2000||Organization||Ethical Vegetarian Alternative is founded to raise awareness about the benefits of eating less or no meat.||Belgium|
|2000||Organization||Tibetan Volunteers for Animals|
|2000||Vegetarianism||Literature||Colin Spencer publishes Vegetarianism: A History|
|2002||Activism||Meet Your Meat. "This documentary explores the treatment of animals in modern animal agriculture (also known as industrial agriculture or factory farming)."|
|2003||Organization||Meatless Monday is founded.|
|2004–2018||"Search data from Google Trends shows an impressive worldwide increase in the interest in veganism from 2004 to 2018. Top regions include Israel, Australia, Canada, Austria, and New Zealand."|
|2009||Organization||Vegan Ireland: The Vegan Society of Ireland is founded as a non-profit. It promotes veganism and animal rights.||Ireland|
|2009||Vegetarianism||Literature||Lierre Keith publishes The Vegetarian Myth.||United States|
|2009||Vegetarianism and veganism||Literature||Amy Shand publishes That's why We Don't Eat Animals: A Book about Vegans, Vegetarians, and All Living Things, a non-fiction book for children.|
|2012||Organization||Vegan Australia is founded. It campaigns nationally for veganism.||Australia|
|2013||Live and Let Live.|
|2013||Vegetarianism||Literature||Adam D. Shprintzen publishes The Vegetarian Crusade: The Rise of an American Reform Movement, 1817-1921.||United States|
|2014||"There’s been a 600% increase in people identifying as vegans in the U.S in the last three years. According to a report by research firm GlobalData, only 1% of U.S. consumers claimed to be vegan in 2014. And in 2017, that number rose to 6%."|
|2014||Organization||Peepal Farm is founded.||India|
|2014||Veganism||Literature||Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina publish diet book Becoming Vegan: The Complete Reference to Plant-Base Nutrition, Comprehensive Edition.|
|2016||"But in 2016, German companies launched more vegan food products than in any other country."|
|2017||"There’s been a 600% increase in people identifying as vegans in the U.S in the last three years. According to a report by research firm GlobalData, only 1% of U.S. consumers claimed to be vegan in 2014. And in 2017, that number rose to 6%."|
Meta information on the timeline
How the timeline was built
The initial version of the timeline was written by User:Sebastian.
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What the timeline is still missing
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