Throughout recorded human history there are tales of remarkable people whose lives were fascinating. Two men who lived in the late 1700s are such individuals. Tarrare (his real name is unknown) was a French man who was a soldier and a bit of a side-show freak. Charles Domery was a Polish man who was also a soldier. They both are well-known for having extraordinary appetites and the ability to consume incredible amounts of food. Despite consuming so much food both men strangely did not become obese though they suffered from other physical effects.

I could just re-write what is in their Wikipedia entries but that would be a waste of time. I encourage you to have a read through both entries as I myself found them to be quite interesting. I’ll leave you a few quotes for you to consider. First, a description one of Tarrare’s episodes:

On another occasion Tarrare was presented with a live cat. He tore the cat’s abdomen open with his teeth and drank its blood, and proceeded to eat the entire cat aside from its bones, before vomiting up its fur and skin. Following this, hospital staff offered Tarrare a variety of other animals including snakes, lizards and puppies, all of which were eaten; he also swallowed an entire eel without chewing, having first crushed its head with his teeth.

Finally, a description of Domery’s talents:

At 4:00 am, Domery was awakened and fed 4 lb (1.8 kg) of raw cow’s udder, which was eaten without hesitation. At 9:30 am he was given a meal of 5 lb (2.3 kg) of raw beef, twelve large tallow candles totaling one pound (453 g), and a bottle of porter, all of which were consumed. At 1:00 pm Domery was given another meal of a further 5 lb of beef, a pound (453 g) of candles, and three large bottles of porter, all of which were also eaten and drunk. During the course of the experiment he did not defecate, urinate or vomit at any point, his pulse remained regular and his skin did not change temperature.


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