Animal Aid


Posted 12 May 2004

Poll reveals that Gandhi is the greatest ever vegetarian. "Mum would be so incredibly proud", says Stella as Linda McCartney takes second place

Mohandas Gandhi is the runaway winner of a light-hearted opinion poll to find the greatest ever vegetarian - conducted by Animal Aid during its annual Veggie Month in March. Out of more than 38,000 votes counted, the great Indian political leader secured in excess of 15% more than his nearest rival.

Gandhi, whose model of non-violent civil disobedience inspired the campaign for Indian independence from the British Empire, was a life-long vegetarian who believed that "the life of a lamb is no less precious than that of a human being" and that "the more helpless a creature, the more entitled it is to protection by man from the cruelty of man".

"It's amazing", says Stella as Linda is runner-up

While Gandhi was clear winner of the poll, there was a remarkably close battle for second place with Linda McCartney pipping Leonardo da Vinci by only 24 votes. Her high position is a remarkable testament to the respect felt for Linda, whose convenience food range and best ever selling vegetarian cookbook introduced millions to veggie meals based upon recipes, which traditionally include meat. Linda thus becomes both the highest placed 'modern' and the leading female vegetarian. Commenting on the result, Linda's daughter, fashion designer Stella McCartney said:

"My mum would be so incredibly proud to be voted one of the greatest veggies ever. It is amazing to be remembered for doing something really positive for others. It's remarkable what she achieved for promoting the cause. The love she had for animals lives on!"

Poll details

The public were asked to choose from a final list of 12 great vegetarians. They were selected to demonstrate not only the vital contribution that vegetarians have made to science, literature, art, philosophy, entertainment, music, sport, history and politics, but also because their decision not to eat meat was/is crucial to their beliefs and achievements.

  1. Gandhi
  2. Linda McCartney
  3. Leonardo da Vinci
  4. Albert Einstein
  5. Spike Milligan
  6. Benjamin Zephaniah
  7. Plutarch
  8. Albert Schweitzer
  9. Moby
  10. Leo Tolstoy
  11. Percy Bysshe Shelley
  12. Martina Navratilova

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