Cats In Ancient Egypt

Wednesday, February 9, 2022 6:07:56 PM

Cats In Ancient Egypt



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He called this cat Felis bubastis. The Egypt Exploration Society funded excavations in Bubastis in the late s. At the city's cemetery of cats, he and colleagues emptied several large pits up to a volume of 20 m 3 cu ft filled with cat and Egyptian mongoose Herpestes ichneumon bones. By , the cemetery was considered exhausted. In the late s, more than , mummified animals most of them cats, were found in the cemetery of Beni Hasan in central Egypt.

The village children came from day to day and provided themselves with the most attractive mummies they could find. These they took down the river bank to sell for the smallest coin to passing travelers. The path became strewn with mummy cloth and bits of cats' skulls and bones and fur in horrid positions, and the wind blew the fragments about and carried the stink afar.

Most of them were cat mummies. A large part was sold as fertiliser, a small part was purchased by the zoological museum of the city's university college. The cats were of all ages from adult to kittens with deciduous teeth. Some of them were contained in statues and sarcophagi. The larger ones were bandaged in cloth of different colours with decorated heads and ears formed of rubberized tissue. It was located in the midst of tombs with crocodile mummies. In , the British Museum received a collection of mummified cats and 11 small carnivores excavated at Gizeh by Flinders Petrie. The mummies probably date to between and BC. The analysis revealed that they were deliberately strangulated before they reached the age of two years.

They were probably used to supply the demand for mummified cats as votive offerings. Remains of 23 cats were found in the early s in a small mastaba tomb at the archaeological site Balat in Dakhla Oasis. The cats were probably mummified as tissue shreds were still stuck in their bones. Excavations in the Bubasteum area at Saqqara in the early s yielded cat mummies in the tomb of the Vizier Aperel. Radiographic examination showed that mostly young cats were mummified; most cats died of skull fractures and had dislocated spinal bones, indicating that they were beaten to death.

In this site, the tomb of Tutankhamun 's wet nurse Maia was discovered in , which contained cat mummies next to human mummies. It had probably lived and died in the Ptolemaic period. In the 2nd century, Polyaenus accounted of a stratagem allegedly deployed by the Persian king Cambyses II during the Battle of Pelusium BC : Cambyses II ordered placing of cats and other animals venerated by Egyptians before the Persian front lines. Egyptians purportedly stopped their defending operations, and the Persians then conquered Pelusium. Case for animal mummy surmounted by a cat; Metropolitan Museum of Art. Sarcophagus for cat mummy, ca BC; Brooklyn Museum. Mummified cats in the Natural History Museum, London. The Gayer-Anderson cat ; British Museum.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Cat eating a fish under a chair, mural in the tomb of Nakht copied by Norman de Garis Davies [14]. Cat mummies exhibited in the Department of Egyptian Antiquities of the Louvre. Cat statue of Bastet in the Louvre. Ancient Egypt portal Cats portal. Etymological Dictionary of Egyptian. Leiden, Boston: Brill. ISBN The Cat in Ancient Egypt Revised ed. Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Press. In Van Voss, H. Leiden: Brill.

The cat in ancient Egypt, illustrated from the collection of cat and other Egyptian figures formed. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. In Ikram, S. Cairo: American University in Cairo Press. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London. In Massiera, M. JSTOR The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology. S2CID Beni Hasan. Volume 2. London: Egypt Exploration Fund. The tomb of Nakht at Thebes. Tombs of the Courtiers and Oxyrhynkhos.

London: British School of Archaeology in Egypt. Oxford: Griffith Institute, Ashmolean Museum. Cairo: Supreme Council of Antiquities Press. Classical Cats. The Rise and Fall of the Sacred Cat. London, New York: Routledge. In Bakr, M. Egyptian Antiquities from Kufur Nigm and Bubastis. Cairo, Berlin: Museums in the Nile Delta. In Watkins, S. In Elsner, J. Pilgrimage in Graeco-Roman and early Christian antiquity. Seeing the Gods. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Diodorus Siculus, Book 1: A Commentary. The Journal of Egyptological Studies. London: Hakluyt Society. In addition to being a symbol of fertility, she was known as a goddess of the underworld, in that she welcomed the newly departed to the West.

Artist and author Thalia Took says Hathor "protects women and is present whenever they beautify themselves. She blesses women with fertility, and many of the ritual objects associated with Her — such as the sistrum and menat-necklace — also have an erotic significance, and in fact the Greeks identified Her with their Aphrodite. Originally a funerary goddess, Isis was the lover of Osiris. After his death, she used her magic to resurrect him. Isis is honored for her role as the mother of Horus, one of Egypt's most powerful gods. She was also the divine mother of every pharoah of Egypt, and ultimately of Egypt itself. Maat is the Egyptian goddess of truth and justice.

She is married to Thoth, and is the daughter of Ra, the sun god. In addition to truth, she embodies harmony, balance and divine order. In Egyptian legends, it is Maat who steps in after the universe is created, and brings harmony amidst the chaos and disorder. Osiris was the son of earth and sky, and beloved of Isis. He is known as the god who taught mankind the secrets of civilization. Today, he is honored by some Pagans as a god of the underworld and of the harvest. Ra was the ruler of the heavens. He was the god of the sun, the bringer of light, and patron to the pharaohs. According to legend, the sun travels the skies as Ra drives his chariot through the heavens.

Although he originally was associated only with the midday sun, as time went by, Ra became connected to the sun's presence all day long. Taweret was an Egyptian goddess of childbirth and fertility - but for a while, she was considered a demon. Associated with the hippopotomus, Taweret is a goddess who watches over and protects women in labor and their new babies. Thoth was an Egyptian god who spoke as the tongue of Ra.

Find out what's special about this ibis-headed deity of ancient Egypt, and how he factors in to the story of Isis and Osiris. Share Flipboard Email. Patti Wigington. Paganism Expert.

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