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Occasionally, when I try eating a corpse, I get the message

The {monster} corpse tastes terrible! You stop eating the {monster} corpse.

Why does this happen sometimes? All corpses "taste terrible," but usually the character doesn't stop eating them. Should I ignore this message and finish the corpse anyway?

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Oh, it's been a while since I last saw a nethack title :D – Nolonar Mar 12 '14 at 12:52
Are you sure you didn't stop eating the corpse because you got interrupted by nearby monsters? Looking at the source code the only relevant prompt I can find is "Stop eating?" when you are close to death by choking. – badp Mar 12 '14 at 13:09
And another big hello to our friends at the FBI. :) – Shadur Mar 12 '14 at 13:52
up vote 11 down vote accepted

You stop eating the {monster} corpse occurs when something in your environment changes that the game thinks might effect your desire to continue eating. It happens when a new monster enters your line of sight, and if you are attacked.

It can also happen if you choke, choose to stop eating due to fullness, or if something happens to the object you're eating (for example, a troll reviving while you're blind, so that the line-of-sight condition doesn't apply, or if the food decays away during your meal. 1)

I believe that vomiting interrupts eating as well, but I'm not entirely positive about that one.

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The fullness prompt is different. – badp Mar 12 '14 at 13:15
Ah, thanks. I didn't notice that I stopped only whenever a new monster appeared. That would also explain why it happens so often with monkeys (because they tend to swarm). – Doorknob Mar 12 '14 at 15:07
I believe that vomiting interrupts eating as well, but I'm not entirely positive about that one. I guess that depends on whether you're bulimic or not. – Chris Wesseling Mar 12 '14 at 21:14

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