Online dictionaries such as Webster"s and also Wiktionary define the phrase, but don"t offer any type of information around its beginning. They additionally don"t say anything about making use of the phrase in wider applications, comparable to just how bite off even more than one have the right to chew is hardly ever provided in a food context.
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This expression might be older (I know some similar Danish from 14th c), however have it"s complete develop in Montaigne"s essay Of the Cannibals (c. 1580, first translation to lutz-heilmann.info in 1603) and here supplied metaphorically about various other points than food:
"I am afrassist our eyes are bigger than our bellies, and that we have actually even more curiosity than capacity; for we understand at all, but capture nopoint yet wind."
The definition is also apparent in Lyly"s The Anatomy of Wit (from the same year 1578/1580, p. 311 in Arbers 1868-edition):
"But thou art like the Epicure, whose belly is sooner filled than his eye".
For some factor, the synonym "belly" is specifically supplied in this phrase, i.e. "your eyes are bigger than your belly" in various other words, something was so delicious you took a large percentage, however couldn"t eat it all.
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