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Ancient Greece and Rome
Theophrastus (?372-?287BC)

Greek peripatetic philosopher, noted esp. for his Characters, a collection of sketches of moral types. Collins English Dictionary
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The Heretics Feast
The Heretic's Feast: A History of Vegetarianism by Colin Spencer
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Extract from 'The Heretics Feast' by Colin Spencer:

We find a true vegetarian again in Theophrastus, Aristotleís pupil. Born in Lesbos in 372 BC he studied in Athens under Aristotle and became his friend, travelling back to Lesbos with him, where Aristotle established a philosophical circle in Mytilene, the capital. It was here that Aristotle first studied biology and scrutinised the natural aims of plants and animals, for in knowing their final goals he believed that they could understand their structure and development. Perhaps his pupil began work on his own Inquiry into Plants and Growth of Plants, two books which have survived, but his own findings and thoughts differ from his teacherís in quite radical way. He did not think that animals existed for the sake of humans, and thought killing animals unnecessary and unjust, and that the habit of eating them must have begun when war destroyed crops. If plants and vegetable food were abundant there was no need to eat animal flesh.

Extract from a review of Animal Minds and Human Morals - The Origins of the Western Debate by Richard Sorabji. Review by Stephen Salkever:

For Sorabji, the pro-animal side of the ancient debate, the side arguing that the gap between human and animal psychology is not so large, is best represented by various Aristotelians (especially Theophrastus, Aristotle's successor as leader of the Peripatos) and Platonists.

Animal Minds and Human Morals: The Origins of the Western Debate
by Richard Sorabji
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