International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
IVU logo

IVU Online Library

Digitised copies of complete original books, out of copyright
mostly courtesy of Google and Microsoft.

Listed by chronological order of the main subject
all in PDF format and opening in a new window
we recommend view / page display / two-up - use the right arrow key turn the pages


Main index to the IVU Online Library

  1. Outlines of Jainism (PDF 7mb) by Jagmanderlal Jaini M.A., Indore. Pub. Cambridge, 1916. Founded by Mahavira, 599 BC - avoids all harm to animal life.
  2. The Kalpa Sutra, and Nava Tatva: two works illustrative of the Jain religion and philosophy (PDF 7mb) trans. & appendix by J. Stevenson, Bombay. Pub. London, 1818
  3. Jaina Sutras Part I & II (link to Google books) trans. Hermann Jacobi, Oxford 1884

  4. Texts from the Buddhist canon, commonly known as Dhammapada, with accompanying narratives (PDF 9mb) trans. Samuel Beal, Prof. of Chinese, London, 1878. Buddha (?563-483 BC)
  5. The Lankavatara Sutra; a Mahayana text (PDF 9mb) trans. Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki, London, 1932

  6. Asoka, the Buddhist emperor of India (PDF 9mb) by Vincent A. Smith M.R.A.S., Oxford, 1901. Asoka (273?-232 BC) banned all animal slaughter in India.
  7. The Laws of Manu (link to Google books) trans. George Bühler, Oxford, 1886. Somewhat disputed Hindu texts... does not prohibit meat eating but: p.99, Law 48: "Meat can never be obtained without injury to living creatures, and injury to sentient beings is detrimental to (the attainment of) heavenly bliss ; let him therefore shun (the use of) meat."

  8. The Ante-Nicene Fathers: (PDF 52mb) Translations of the Writings of the Fathers down to A.D. 325 edited by A. Roberts and J. Donaldson, Vol.2 (of 10 vols.)

  9. Milton's Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained (PDF 13mb) this edition 1854.
  10. The Ephrata community 120 years ago (PDF 3mb) The Ephrata 'vegan' community was founded by German settlers in Pennsylvania in 1721, this account pub.1905.
  11. Souvenir book of the Ephrata cloister (PDF 6mb) complete history, pub.1921

  12. Emanuel Swedenborg : a biography (PDF 14mb) by James Wilkinson, Boston, 1849. Swedenborg (1688-1772) p.238: He writes on the subject in his Arcana as follows: " Considered apart, eating the flesh of animals is somewhat profane...."

  13. John Wesley (1703-1791) (PDF 7mb) biography by Richard Green, pub. late 19th century. p.35: in the hope of thereby promoting his own piety, he began to use a vegetable diet.

  14. A Dissertation on the Duty of Mercy and Sin of Cruelty to Brute Animals (PDF 9mb) By Humphrey Primatt, London 1776

  15. The Dorrellites (PDF 30mb) 'vegan' community in 1790s New England. See pp.82-89 of this extremely hostile volume of 'History and proceedings of the Pocumtuck Valley memorial association' pub.1898.
  16. Facts authentic, in science and religion: designed to illustrate a new tr. of the Bible (PDF 43mb) by William Cowherd, 1818

  17. History of the Philadelphia Bible-Christian Church from 1817 to 1917 (PDF 2mb) pub.1922
  18. The philosophy of sacred history considered in relation to human aliment and the wines of Scripture (PDF 14mb) - by Sylvester Graham, edited by Henry S. Clubb, pub. W. Horsell, London, 1859

  19. Religion, Natural and Revealed (PDF 8mb): by Orson S. Fowler, New York, 1st pib. 1844, 10th edition 1848 p.136: Were a flesh diet productive of no other evil consequence than lowering ... benevolence that alone should forever annihilate so barbarous a practice'.

  20. Religion and Art (html page) by Richard Wagner, dealing with vegetarianism - originally appeared in the Bayreuther Blätter for October 1880, constituting the whole of that number of the journal. Translated 1897 by W. A Ellis in Vol.6 of Wagner's Prose Works.
  21. The story of Anna Kingsford and Edward Maitland and of the New Gospel of interpretation (PDF 9mb) by Edward Maitland. First pub.1893. This edition 1905.

  22. The Hindoos as they are: a description of the manners, customs, and inner life of Hindoo society in Bengal (PDF 20mb) by Shib Chunder Bose, first pub.1881. This edition Calcutta, 1883. 'The writer has exposed the ... evils to India of English dietetic habits' (Howard Williams in Ethics of Diet).
  23. Poetical works of Edwin Arnold : containing The light of Asia (PDF 12mb) 1883. p.95: 'henceforth none Shall spill the blood of life nor taste of flesh' (in 1891 Arnold was Vice-President of the Bayswater Vegetarian Club, of which Gandhi was Secretary)

  24. Vegetarianism in the light of Theosophy (html page) by Annie Besant, from a lecture published by the Theosophical Publ. Soc. London & "Theosophist" Madras in 1894

  25. A Letter to a Hindu (plain text 50k) by Tolstoy, December 1908, with an intro by Gandhi 1909.

  26. Albert Schweitzer An Anthology (PDF 25mb) edited by Charles R. Joy, Boston, 1947. p.269: Slowly in our European thought comes the notion that ethics has not only to do with mankind but with the animal creation as well. Dr Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965)

  27. How to Eat to Live Vol. 2 (PDF 537k) by Elijah Muhammad, 1967. Chap.19: To eat meat is against our life and shortens the span of our life. We eat meat because it is a habit from childhood.
  28. Good News for All Creation: Vegetarianism As Christian Stewardship (link to Google Books) by Steven Kaufman, Nathan Braun 2004

See also Religion and Vegetarianism - for many articles from the last 60 years or more