Isn't it strange that vegetarianism rears its ugly head in The Hobbit? And in such a context!
I'm thinking, of course, of Beorn, whose name comes from the Old English for "bear" (and is cognate with the Old Norse Björn).
Beorn is a shape-shifter and a mighty man of war, having echoes of the berserker. These were warriors who (possibly with the aid of fly agaric mushrooms or copious draughts of ale) ran wild in battle, not heeding wounds, and who had it seems an Óšinnic cult, Óšinn's very name being related to words for fury and madness. They were thought of as taking on the personalities of animals, such as wolves and bears, and possibly of actually becoming such:
Viking Answer Lady Webpage - Berserkergang
But what does Beorn eat? Bread and honey.
"Stands the Church clock at ten to three? And is there honey still for tea?"
Not exactly id est furor.
It's kind of interesting to me the fascination abstention from meat has exercised over modern urban-dwelling intellectual - even those who doubtless never practised it.
Rider Haggard's She Who Must Be Obeyed lives off bread and fruit. The talented naturalist and novelist W. H. Hudson wrote a novel, Green Mansions, in which he defames the real Amazonian natives (who he, of all people, ought to have been interested in and respectful of) and invents a preposterous fantasy figure of his, Rima, own who dresses in spiders' webs and eschews real jungle-food.
Goodness knows where Beorn gets the energy to tear orcs limb from limb from. ...
Don't you know, all that bread and honey is magically converted into PURE ENERGY with absolutely no health consequences whatsoever? Who needs all that pesky protein and fat when you can have SUGAR?
Think about it. You become a bear. You run around the forest eating orcs and bambies and everything else you can find...and then *bam* you turn back into a human. Ever seen what bears, umm, deposit? Ever consider how much even a little black bear eats? I bet if you woke up after a night of forest feasting bear style you'd stick to foods like milk and honey too.
I'm not entirely sure what the point is...
"All of God's creatures have a natural habitat... my dinner plate." -Me
You could have just said Odin instead of making me Google it...
Someday we shall reclaim the Earth!