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Tuesday, July 10, 2012


Velazquez - Royal El príncipe...
Photo from: petrus.agricola
perro, dog. Avenzoar explains that the meat has a hot and dry nature. It is digested slowly and constitutes a noxious food. He concluded that it is not recommended to eat their meat, above all if old. While Jews and Muslims prohibit eating dog meat claiming it impure like pork, Christians are just as hesitant. All races have a psychological problem about eating dogs as they protect the home, hunt wild game, herd livestock and capture rodents and other harmful animals. Castro maintains that Christians from Castile at dogs during times of general famine such as during the military sieges of Perpignan in 1474 and of Malaga in 1487. 

Villena relates that various animals were consumed for medical purposes such as dog meat to make the gums firm around the teeth. Avenzoar related that dogs' excrements were drunk with liquid to alleviate sore throats. He claimed that the same effect is produced if the excrements are mixed with vinegar to make a plaster and placed on the neck.

Medieval men were not exempt of dog bites. To relieve the pain, Avenzoar prescribed crayfish, put in new clay casserole and covered with lid containing some small holes for the vapor to escape.  This was cooked until toasted, almost burned. Then the shell, with the meat, was ground until drinkable (by adding liquid). During this time, it was thought that if one extracted a fang from a dog, it would not bite anyone but if a dog eats the meat of another dog, it will become rabid. [Castro. Alimentación. 1996:128:198:200 etc; Ibn Zuhr/García Sánchez. 1992:58:70:124 etc; and Villena/Calero. 2002:23a]
Spanish Dog
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1 comment:

  1. I see hot dogs are pretty much the same all over the world! In Moscow I ate one with fried onion and pickled cucumber.
    Certainly in wartime people eat anything and everithing: poor dogs! In any case, unlike in China or precolumbian America, there exists certainly a prejudice against eating "man's best friend". When Cortés arrived to Mexico, he and his men were shocked to see that dog meat was sold in the main market of Teotihuacan. By the way, Spanish took with them not only horses, but also dogs. Mastins did not appear so lovely to the aztecs as Baltasar Carlo's dog in Velazquez painting!