From ancient Egypt to modern Halloween celebrations, black cats continue to inspire awe and intrigue. But they are still the hardest colour to rehome. Through no fault of their own, black cats are overlooked time and time again, as most people tend to choose ‘prettier’ coloured cats. Even black kittens are left until last for adoption, while their more colourful siblings are chosen first.
So, let’s look at the remarkable history of Black Cats.
? Ancient Mysteries: In ancient Egypt, black cats were revered as symbols of protection and good luck. Bastet, the goddess of home, fertility, and childbirth, was often depicted with the head of a lioness or a domestic cat, highlighting the importance of these animals in ancient Egyptian life.
⚡Middle Ages and Superstitions: The medieval period saw a darker turn for black cats. Linked to supernatural beliefs and witchcraft, they became subjects of superstitions and fear. This misguided association led to their unfortunate persecution, as they were believed to be companions of witches or even witches themselves in disguise.
?Witches’ Familiars: The witch hunts of the Middle Ages cast a long shadow on the legacy of black cats. These felines were accused of being familiars—spirits aiding witches in their alleged sorcery. Such beliefs created a cycle of fear and violence that black cats bore the brunt of.
?Redemption and Revival: Over time, perceptions began to shift. Enlightenment and a better understanding of science led to a broader appreciation for the natural world. Black cats transitioned from symbols of fear to companions of beauty and charm, gaining popularity in art and literature.
?Halloween Icons: Black cats have become synonymous with Halloween, embodying the mysterious and magical essence of the holiday. They are often featured as symbols of luck, or even as creatures that walk the boundary between worlds, connecting the living and the supernatural.
?Diverse Symbolism: In various cultures, black cats have been revered as omens of good fortune, and as protectors against negative energies. In some regions, spotting a black cat signifies impending prosperity, while in others, they are celebrated as bringers of joy.
?National Black Cat Day: National Black Cat Day on October 27th celebrates our newly enlightened view of black cats – their resilience, uniqueness, and the diversity they bring to the animal kingdom.
We also celebrate Black Cat Appreciation Day on 17th August, a day dedicated to these mysterious feline friends.
Fortunately, no domestic cats have arrived on Infinity, a mysterious island, in our story, where the last one of every extinct species lives. You can download our extinction lesson plans (FREE) and part one of our award-winning, musical, dramatised, audiobook story, Lost on Infinity, here.
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