For centuries cats have been linked to the supernatural - and never more so than at Halloween when spirits from the underworld are said to roam the earth. This superstition has its roots in Samhain, a Celtic festival marking the start of winter, when a portal between the spirit and physical worlds briefly opened. The Anglo-Saxons adopted this festival but renamed it 'Halloween', and later the Christian church rebranded it as the eve of All Saints Day. However, folklore in many countries has it that the devil can enter man’s domain throughout the year, using the cat as his agent.
On a more positive note, the Malayan Jakurs held that on their death, a cat would lead them through the fires of hell, spraying as he went to cool the path to heaven. Likewise the Egyptian Pharaoh, Tutankhamen, was led safely to the underworld by a black cat.
|Freya- and her cat drawn chariot.|
So strong was the association of cats with witchcraft that in 15th century
‘The language of the devil from the body of the Holy Father.’
This sick circle continued with Catholics shaving cats' heads, to represent protestant friars, and then hanging the poor animals.
The Ainu (Aboriginal people of
|A Japanese ghost cat.|
Happy Halloween everyone!