HISTORY AND LEGENDS
Because of their extraordinary ability to keep down the rodent population in the grain fields along the Nile, cats became objects of worship when Egypt was known as granary of the world. The Egyptian cat goddess Bast, or Bastet, depicted as having the body of a woman and the head of a cat, was the goddess of love and fertility as well.
Egyptian cats were also used for for sport by their owners. Attached to leashes, these animals hunted birds for the family table; a boomerang flung by the master brought the birds down and the cats, unleashed, would retrieve them. Because they were economically useful and were believed to ensure many children for the family, cats were so revered that they were mummified and buried either with their owners or in special cemeteries.
Despite Egyptian laws that forbade the removal of the sacred cats, Phoenician sailors smuggled them out of the country. Cats were traded along with their treasure from the Middle East and in antiquity could be found throughout the Mediterranean area. Archaeological evidence indicates that the Romans were the first to bring cats to the British Isles.
The value of cats as predators was recognized and appreciated in Europe in the middle of the 14th century, when the rat-borne Black Death, or Plaque, struck.
Generally, however, during the Middle Ages cats were feared and hated. Because of their nocturnal habits, they were believed to consort with the devil. This association with witchcraft has been responsible for untold cruelties to cats down through the centuries. The Renaissance was, in contrast, the golden age for cats. Almost everyone had one, from members of royal families and their staffs to the peasantry.
The first domestic felines to arrive in North America were those that came over with colonists and were employed to keep the rodent population under control in the settlers fields, barns and homes. Cats are said to have played an important part in keeping rats out of the California gold mines.
While cats served many practical purposes in Europe and America, in countries such as Siam and China they continued to be worshiped as deities. In India, although not worshiped, cats played an important part in religious or occult ceremonies. In South America the Incas revered sacred cats, representations of which can be seen in pre-Columbian Peruvian artifacts.
Modern progressive people love cats
Modern progressive people trust cats.
A cat has absolute emotional honesty: human beings for reason or another, may hide their feelings, but a cat does not???