With Hallowe’en just around the corner, we’re devoting a little time to the only creature who already has their costume… The mog-nificent black cat.
Black cats get a bad rap, they have somehow become associated with witches, bringing bad luck, and to some aren’t considered as beautiful as other breeds. 😿
This preconception seems to be fading however, as charity Cats Protection shared that black and black-and-white cats are no longer overlooked as they once were.
To hopefully clear up some misconceptions about black cats, we’ve pulled together some great facts that will prove these suspicions to be a load of hocus pocus…
WHY DO PEOPLE THINK BLACK CATS BRING BAD LUCK?
As far back as the 1300s, black cats were actually worshipped as gods (they haven’t forgotten this…) but by the Middle Ages, black cats, known for their nocturnal habits, became associated with all things spooky and evil....
Let’s not forget that this was also a time when women too were subjected to suspicion and conjecture on often baseless accusations.
Witchcraft actually stems from the term wiccecræft - roughly meaning someone who is one with nature and practices Wiccan remedies, something that the Christian church was quick to associate with the devil. Sadly, this also led to many black cats being killed during the time of the Bubonic Plague, even though cats were helping control the spread by catching rats.
Some people also believed that those who broke the rules during their life would be reincarnated as a cat (like that’s a bad thing...?)
It seems that black cats have had a hard time shaking these connotations, so let's look at some of the more paw-sitive myths around our high-melanin moggies…
In some countries, a black cat can bring good luck
While finding any cat on your doorstep is a bonus (even if it makes you late for work), in Scotland, if you see a black cat on your front step, prosperity is sure to follow.
The same is true in France, where black cats are sometimes known as “matagots” - feeding these “magician cats” is thought to bring good luck, you’ll also have a new friend who visits regularly, as anyone who has ever fed a stray cat can confirm.
In Italy, if you hear a black cat sneeze, apparently it will also bring good luck (just make sure you’re out of the “blast zone”)
Apparently, if a black cat is in the audience on the opening night of a play, it is said to have a long and successful run, the same is said of keeping a black cat on seafaring ships to ensure a safe passage, read more about some famous seafaring felines here.
Winston Churchill meets “Blackie” - ship cat for HMS Prince of Wales
In Japan, a black cat crossing your path is said to bring good luck and scare away demons (they are terrifying, after all…)
At Natusan, we love all cats, and believe that they deserve the very best, but we can’t help but be fascinated by the legacy that black cats have, and if the Ancient Egyptians are to be believed, these felines could very well be representations of goddess Bastet, the protector of households, fertility, and (of course) cats.
Best to stay on their good side, then.
27/10/2020 by NatuTeam