C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.


He is a very valiant trencher-man.


Born merely for the purpose of digestion.

La Bruyère.

Hunger makes everything sweet.


Reason should direct and appetite obey.


The turnpike road to people’s hearts, I find, lies through their mouths.

Dr. John Wolcott.

Such, whose sole bliss is eating, who can give but that one brutal reason why they live.


I am a great eater of beef, and I believe that does harm to my wit.


  • Their various cares in one great point combine,
  • The business of their lives—that is, to dine.
  • Young.

    As for me, give me turtle or give me death. What is life without turtle? nothing. What is turtle without life? nothinger still.

    Artemus Ward.

    I have come to the conclusion that mankind consume twice too much food.

    Sydney Smith.

    The belly has no ears.


    Whose god is their belly and whose glory is their shame.


  • Fat paunches have lean pates; and dainty bits
  • Make rich the ribs, but bankrupt quite the wits.
  • Shakespeare.

    The pleasures of the palate deal with us like Egyptian thieves who strangle those whom they embrace.


    As houses well stored with provisions are likely to be full of mice, so the bodies of those that eat much are full of diseases.


    Gluttony and drunkenness have two evils attendant on them; they make the carcass smart, as well as the pocket.

    Marcus Antoninus.

    Why, at this rate, a fellow that has but a groat in his pocket may have a stomach capable of a ten-shilling ordinary.


    Let me have men about me that are fat; sleek-headed men, and such as sleep o’ nights; yonder Cassius has a lean and hungry look; he thinks too much; such men are dangerous.


    He was a kind and thankful toad, whose heart dilated in proportion as his skin was filled with good cheer; and whose spirits rose with eating, as some men’s do with drink.

    Washington Irving.

    Swinish gluttony never looks to heaven amidst its gorgeous feast; but with besotted, base ingratitude, cravens and blasphemes his feeder.


    He that prolongs his meals, and sacrifices his time as well as his other conveniences, to his luxury, how quickly does he outset his pleasure!


    Gluttony is the source of all our infirmities, and the fountain of all our diseases. As a lamp is choked by a superabundance of oil, a fire extinguished by excess of fuel, so is the natural health of the body destroyed by intemperate diet.


  • And by his side rode loathsome gluttony,
  • Deform’d creature, on a filthy swine;
  • His belly was up-blown with luxury,
  • And eke with fatness swollen were his eyne.
  • Spenser.

    But for the cravings of the belly not a bird would have fallen into the snare; nay, nay, the fowler would not have spread his net. The belly is chains to the hands and fetters to the feet. He who is a slave to his belly seldom worships God.


    Some men find happiness in gluttony and in drunkenness, but no delicate viands can touch their taste with the thrill of pleasure, and what generosity there is in wine steadily refuses to impart its glow to their shriveled hearts.


  • Some men are born to feast, and not to fight;
  • Whose sluggish minds, e’en in fair honor’s field,
  • Still on their dinner turn—
  • Let such pot-boiling varlets stay at home,
  • And wield a flesh-hook rather than a sword.
  • Joanna Baillie.

    When I behold a fashionable table set out in all its magnificence, I fancy that I see gouts and dropsies, fevers and lethargies, with other innumerable distempers lying in ambuscade among the dishes. Nature delights in the most plain and simple diet. Every animal but man keeps to one dish. Herbs are the food of this species, fish of that, and flesh of a third. Man falls upon everything that comes in his way; not the smallest fruit or excrescence of the earth, scarce a berry or a mushroom can escape him.