Another time he came and was silent for a while. Then he put his head on one side, and looked at me.
“Is this Ben Gunn a man?” he asked.
“I do not know, sir,” said I. “I am not very sure whether he’s sane.”
“If there’s any doubt about the matter, he is,” returned the doctor. “A man who has been three years biting his nails on a desert island, Jim, can’t expect to appear as sane as you or me. It doesn’t lie in human nature. Was it cheese you said he had a fancy for?”
“Yes, sir, cheese,” I answered
“Well, Jim,” says he, “just see the good that comes of being dainty in your food. You’ve seen my snuff-box, haven’t you ? And you never saw me take snuff; the reason being that in my snuff-box I carry a piece of Parmesan cheese0 — a cheese made in Italy, very nutritious. Well, that’s for Ben Gunn ! ” (117)
Robert Louis Stevenson, Treasure Island
N.C. Wyeth (1882-1945), Ben Gunn
Laura McCants, Cheese Plater (2011)