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Did Romans really dislike meat and avoid eating it?

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Guest ParatrooperLirelou

I remember when I was in high school, I borrowed a basic book on Roman civilization.

 

According to it, Romans almost entirely ate grain and often did not include meat in their meals.It states Romans really dislike meat.

 

In fact it even states an account where a Roman Legionnaire was complaining that they had no bread and that they had to eat meat(because they were so used to eating bread).IIRC it states something about the Roman soldier not liking meat.

 

Is this true?I really find it absurd-seriously about every civilization I know off included some sort of meat as part of their meal.

 

I find this hard to believe(even before I joined this site I though of it as almost impossible to accept as fact). :lol:

 

Also Roman Legion complaining about meat?I don't know, I recall reading the Roman Legions often forraged in campaigns which included hunting for animal.

Edited by ParatrooperLirelou

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The Romans ate meat but the availability of it was another matter. You could of course buy the Roman equivalent of a burger from street vendors. Handouts of exotic meat from animals hunted in the arena and butchered afterward was a regular feature of imperial life, not to mention a welcome bonus for the poor. Legionary camps show the remains of cooked animals. However, the Romans of the early republic were derided as 'porridge eaters' by other cultures.

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There are several relevant threads elsewhere on UNRV about the Roman military diet including:

 

Legion rations

 

Food in the legion

 

In comparison relevant links to the wider Italian diet dsicovered relating to Herculaneum can be read at

Giant ancient septic tank discovered -the Roman diet revealed

 

I have come across enough referecnes to animal bone at Romano-British and Roman sites along the Rhine to be wary of anyone claiming that the Roman diet was exclusively vegetarian.

 

Regarding evidence for the military diet in practice you may find this link to the Vindolanda Tablets online of interest.

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Guest ParatrooperLirelou

 

I have come across enough referecnes to animal bone at Romano-British and Roman sites along the Rhine to be wary of anyone claiming that the Roman diet was exclusively vegetarian.

 

 

The more time I spend on this site, the more I realize just how inaccurate high school books on history are. :hammer:

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