Famous Teetotalers in History

21/05/13 at 3:11 am

Teetotaler, also spelled teetotaller, originated from the word ‘total’. The term was coined by R. Turner of Preston in 1833. A teetotaler means a person who strictly abstains from drinking alcoholic beverages. According to an anecdote, the term originated when Dicky Turner, a member of Preston Temperance Society, said, “I’ll be reet down out-and-out t-t-total for ever and ever”. Joseph Livesey founded this society and authored the pledge of the temperance movement. The pledge was, “We agree to abstain from all liquors of an intoxicating quality whether ale, porter, wine or ardent spirits, except as medicine.” In early 1800s a capital letter T appearing after one’s signatures meaning that the writer was a teetotaler. The term was lexically recognized in England in 1830. Reasons for teetotalism are mostly religious, medical, social or economic.

1. Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali was born as Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. to Cassius Marcellus Clay, Sr. and Odessa O’Grady Clay, on January 17, 1942 in Louisville, Kentucky, U.S. He is an American Cultural Icon, a former World Heavyweight Champion and an Olympian gold medalist. He is known in the history of boxing for his powerful jab, unique style, and the agility which he used to boast of prior to fighting. Speaking to press reporters, he said that in the ring, he could “float like a butterfly, sting like a bee”. Whoever has seen him fighting would agree with him without hesitation. The memorable events in his boxing career are two fights with Sony Liston when he proclaimed himself the greatest, the fight with George Foreman wherein he emerged as victor, and his fight with Leon Spinks, whom he defeated and became heavyweight world champion. In 1964, he converted to Islam, changing his name to Muhammad Ali. Since drinking of any sort of alcoholic beverage is strictly prohibited in Islam, Ali was constrained to comply with the rule and to become a teetotaler.

2. Don Bradman

Don Bradman

Don Bradman

Sir Donal George Bradman, better known as Don Bradman, was born to George and Emily Bradman on August 27, 1908 at Cootamundra, New South Wales, Australia. He died on February 25, 2001 at the age of 92 years in Kensington Park, South Australia. He is recognized as the greatest Test Batsman of all times with an unparalleled Test batting average of 99.94. During the early stages of his career, he used to exchange his views about no smoking and no drinking, which made his seniors feel somewhat uncomfortable with him. Due to his teetotalism, an idiom ‘Bradman Shout’ was coined to describe someone who never shouted a glass of alcohol for his teammates, just as Bradman never did. John Howard, the Australian Prime Minister, called him “The greatest living Australian”. A museum was dedicated to him during his lifetime. A $5 commemorative gold coin with Bradman’s image was issued on the occasion of his birthday. His image also appeared on postage stamps.

3. Prince Andrew, Duke of York

Prince Andrew, Duke of York

Prince Andrew, Duke of York

Prince Andrew was born to Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, on February 19, 1960 in Birmingham Palace, London. At his birth, he was second in the line of succession to the throne, but is currently fourth in line to throne. He is a commander and honorary rear admiral in the Royal Navy. The duke of York refrains from drinking and observes total abstinence from all sorts of alcoholic drinks, even during his own birthday parties. He prefers to drink water or some other non-alcoholic beverage. He is a committed teetotaler.

4. Joe Biden

Joe Biden

Joe Biden

Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., commonly known as Joe Biden, was born to Joseph Robinette Biden, Sr and Catherine Eugenia Biden on November 20, 1942 at St. Mary Hospital, Scranton, Pennsylvania. He is the U.S. Senator from Delaware and 47th Vice President of the United States. He was the sixth youngest Senator in the U.S. history, when he was elected in 1972. He was co-elected for a second term as Vice President, along with President Obama, in 2012. He opposed the Gulf War but voted in favor of the Iraq War Resolution. Biden does not drink any alcoholic beverage on account of the history of alcoholism and its consequences in his family.

5. George W. Bush

George W. Bush

George W. Bush

George W. Bush was the 43rd United States President. He was one of the most influential presidents, who made the world change its norms and submit to his whims, and it is probably on this account hat he has also made America a far less popular and less respected country than it used to be. According to his own statement he used to drink too much and he is quoted to have said “Alcohol began to compete with my energies … I’d lose focus”. At the age of twenty, he was arrested for disorderly conduct after he and a few of his friends had had a few beers. At the age of thirty years, he was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. After his 40th birthday celebration, he said, “I quit drinking in 1986 and haven’t had a drop since then.”

6. John Cadbury

John Cadbury

John Cadbury

John Cadbury was born to Richard Tapper Cadbury on August 12, 1801 in Birmingham, England and died on May 11, 1889 at the age of 87 years, in Birmingham, England. He received education at Joseph Crosfield’s Quaker School at Hartshill. He founded Cadbury as a small chocolate business, which then developed into one of the largest chocolate producers in the world. He opined that there were solutions for the prevailing social evils. He was devoted to the temperance movement, refraining strictly from drinking in the days when it was said about drinking, ‘Drunk for a penny, dead drunk for two pence’. He advocated total abstinence and believed that the man who abstained from alcohol could afford nutritious beef every Sunday.

7. Willem Drees

Willem Drees

Willem Drees

Willem Drees was born on July 5, 1886 in Amsterdam, Netherlands and died on May 14, 1988 at the age of 101 years in The Hague, Netherlands. He was one of the longest living state heads who were centenarians. He was known as father and was praised for his simplicity. He used to go to his office either on foot or by a bicycle. During the time when it was an established norm for politicians to smoke a cigar or drink, he abstained from all sorts of alcoholic drinks and offered his guests biscuits with a cup of tea. In 2006, he was elected as the best Prime Minister of the Netherlands.

8. John Diefenbaker

John Diefenbaker

John Diefenbaker

John Diefenbaker was born to William Thomas Diefenbaker and Mary Florence Bannerman on September 18, 1895, in Neustadt, Ontario, Canada and died on August 16, 1979. He appointed the first female minister in the history of Canada. He also appointed the first aboriginal member of the senate. He opposed apartheid and helped South Africa. He led a simple life and abstained from drinking. When offered an alcoholic drink, he told the UK Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill, “I’m a teetotaler; I don’t drink hard liquor.”

9. Donald John Trump, Sr.

Donald John Trump, Sr.

Donald John Trump, Sr.

Donald John Trump, Sr. was born to Fred Trump and Mary Ann on June 14, 1946, in Queens, New York City, New York, U.S. He is the founder of the famous Trump Entertainment Resort and he is the chairman of the Trump Organization. He is known for his extravagant lifestyle and for his performance on NBC reality show The Apprentice. He ranks number 14 on the 2012 Forbes Celebrity 100 list. It is interesting to note that in spite of his well-known extravagant lifestyle he believes in abstinence from all sorts of alcoholic drinks and is an absolute teetotaler.

10. Erwin Johannes Eugen Rommel

Erwin Johannes Eugen Rommel

Erwin Johannes Eugen Rommel

Erwin Johannes Eugen Rommel was born on November 15, 1891 in Heidenheim, Kingdom of Württemberg, German Empire, and died on October 14, 1944 at the age of 52 years in Herrlingen, Nazi Germany. He was also known as The Desert Fox on account of his excellent skills in desert warfare. Rommel was the famous German Field Marshal of World War II. A distinguishing feature of his personality was that he earned respect from both troops: those for whom he fought as well as those whom he fought against. Afraid of his popularity, Hitler made him commit suicide with Hitler’s assurance that he would spare the lives of Rommel’s family members. Rommel was a strict abstainer from alcoholic drinks.

Conclusion:

Drinking is beneficial in respect of keeping the blood flowing properly through the system and it is probably on this account that the occurrence of cardiac problems is lower in the people who drink alcoholic beverages. The problem is, however, that it is as injurious for the liver as smoking is for lungs and both types of addiction can culminate in cancer.

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Image Credit :


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Muhammad_Ali_NYWTS.jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Duke_of_York_-_World_Economic_Forum_on_the_Middle_East_2008.jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Drees,_W._-_SFA002019221.jpg
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Donald_Trump_by_Gage_Skidmore.jpg
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bundesarchiv_Bild_146-1985-013-07,_Erwin_Rommel.jpg