Here is a chance for persons not already sufficiently decorated. The causes of Temperance
and of insobriety have already given ribbons, blue or yellow, to their partisans,
and why should not vegetarians have a ribbon of their own? They should, they must,
nay more, they are about to adorn themselves with little pieces of gold braid. The
"Order of the Golden Age," as we learn from a circular which has been sent to us,
is being organised. The object of the Order is to promote peace not only between
man and man, but between man and beast. We trust that all mad dogs, angry bulls,
man-eating tigers, and snakes will join this excellent Order, and wear the golden
braid. The peculiarity of the golden age was that "the dog didn't bite," nor did
sharks, lions, and rattlesnakes carry on war with humanity. If we are to have peace,
Messieurs les animaux must commence. Few of us will join the Order while wolves and
grizzly bears hold sulkily aloof. Meanwhile the human companions of the Order are
to "avoid all food and clothing necessitating bloodshed," eat no mutton or beef,
and array themselves in no sealskin. Gold braid is so much prettier than blue ribbon
that we may expect vegetarianism, under its new name, to win many fresh recruits.
Trewman's Exeter Flying Post or Plymouth and Cornish Advertiser, February 29, 1896:
The Editor has received a copy of a print entitled the Vegetarian Review, which,
with rare self-denial, he has handed to me. I do not wish to appear ungenerous, but
really I know not what to do with it, decorously. However, as it contains a local
reference, I may use it to inspire a paragraph. From this publication I gather that
there has been founded in Exeter "a new order of chivalry," self styled "The Order
of the Golden Age." Now, as a matter alike of law and decorum, all orders in this
country must be founded by the Sovereign, who is the "fountain of honour." Imprimis,
therefore, the "order" is disloyal. Moreover, it is foolish. Chivalry means, primarily,
pertaining to horses (cheval-caballus), and, derivatively, the usages and qualifications
of chevaliers or knights. But you cannot expect cabbage-fed men either to perform
equestrian feats or to fight. Qoud erat absurdum.
Northern Echo, Monday, September 6, 1897:
Announcement of OGA meeting
Mr Sidney Beard, the provost of the "Order of the Golden Age," is inviting a number
of friends to a meeting to be held at St. Martin's Town-hall, on Tuesday, September
14th, at 7.30 p.m., when he purposes making an attack on the Christian Church and
Press for their silence in not denouncing what he considers is the barbarous and
heathenish custom of slaughtering animals for food.
Trewman's Exeter Flying Post or Plymouth and Cornish Advertiser,
Monday, September 20, 1897:
The vegetarians have been wounded in their own house. At the close of their conference
the Hon. Mrs. F. J. Bruce read a paper on the "mistakes" of the cult, suggesting
that the moderate use of tobacco, beer, wine &c., might be a good thing, and arguing
that such use was a nobler practice than that of total abstinence. The light of reason
has begun to rise on the vegetarian camp, and we may hope to yet see the spirit of
charity and toleration descend upon those who put up at the sign of the Cabbage and
Carrot; the notion that a man may have tastes and predilections outside those of
the Golden Age Order may yet be admitted. Hitherto such an one has been deemed by
the advanced section of Carraway seeders as a depraved brute or a poor fool too inane
to be worthy of pity.
Aberdeen Weekly Journal, Wednesday, September 22, 1897:
Vegetarianism and Religion
At the International Vegetarian Congress, at present sitting in London, Mr. S. H.
Beard (Ilfracombe), "provost" of the Order of the Golden Age, "a body for the advocacy
of vegetarianism on moral and religious grounds," read a paper on "The Religious
Aspect of Vegetarianism." He maintained that the service in which he was engaged
was more acceptable to the Deity than mere psalm-singing or praying. The Rev. J.
Clarke, of Manchester, said he was glad that emphasis was being laid upon the higher
aspects of the vegetarian movement. Some seemed to imagine that vegetarians were
merely concerned with eating and drinking, and it was said they had invented no dish
which would tempt anyone to say, "Come, now, let us make a night of it." (Laughter.)
They produced dishes, however, that were as palatable to flesh-eaters as flesh itself,
and far less injurious. Vegetarianism did not merely mean a healthy and adequate
diet - though science proved it to be both - but it involved humane and higher considerations.
Lloyd's Weekly Newspaper (London), Sunday, December 25, 1898:
The Eve of Christmas By The Editor
MISTAKEN GRUMBLING - Mr. Josiah Oldfield, M.A., writes from the Temple to "enter
the most emphatic protest against the materialisation and the brutalisation of Christmas."
By this he means the killing and eating of poultry and cattle. "I appeal for a vegetarian
Christmas," says this writer; "and for a termination of this degraded and degrading
festival, which horrifies every Hindu who comes to our shore, and makes Christmas
a time of deepest heart-sorrow and pain." This is on a par with those reformers who
would banish all beer and wine because certain persons abuse instead of using the
good things of life. It is temperance, both in eating and drinking, that will bring
its own best reward in this and all other seasons. In other fields besides the material
one a measure of common sense is needed to correct the follies and weaknesses of
those teachers who are ever falling into what Tennyson so aptly denounces as THE
FALSEHOOD OF EXTREMES.
The Times, November 1, 1910:
Albert Hall concert review
ORDER OF THE GOLDEN AGE. - If the thousands of people who spent three hours at the
Albert Hall concert on Saturday night were members or even adherents of this order,
the fruitarian's golden age would be a good deal nearer than we should judge it to
be from the evidence of the average dining room or restaurant. The Order of the Golden
Age is a 15 year old organisation, with offices in the prosaic Brompton Road, whence
the gospel of natural diet is propagated by the usual method of books and pamphlets.
"Thousands of cultured men and women, including eminent leaders of thought in Church
and State," according to a statement on Saturday's programme, have been persuaded
to live on "fruit, cereals, nut-foods, vegetables and dairy produce." It would be
interesting to know whether the three field-marshals, three princesses, nine duchesses,
and dozens of other titled persons in the list of "patrons" are among the thousands
of cultured converts. The concert itself was not an actively proselytizing function;
though suggestions of a golden age might be discovered in many of the numbers. Mr.
Manitto Klitgaard wandered in song over a "glorious golden" path, and expressed a
wish to clasp all creation to his heart. Miss Edith Kirkwood tripped like a fairy
on the green. Mr. W. Carter's choir apostrophized the Rowan tree, to which Mr. Fred
Godley added the singing burn and heather. Miss Gertrude Lonsdale took us out among
little bleating lambs. Mr. Iver McKay "Plucked the blue flow'rs Among the golden
corn." Miss grace Kenza floated down a stream in the moonlight." Dr. Sibley's organ
solo was less pacific. At one point it suggested, perhaps, a conference of lions
on the subject of vegetarianism. Whatever else the music of the evening was meant
to convey, it conveyed much pleasure even to the carnivora among the audience.