Cat Goddess of India and Egypt

brotee mukhopadhyay By brotee mukhopadhyay, 25th Jul 2010 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Religion

Cats draw your attention because of their beautiful fur and imperial gestures. The status of the cat in ancient Egypt was that of a goddess. In India, too, they have similar position. Let us read about the cat goddess in India and Egypt.

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Cat Goddess of India and Egypt
brotee mukhopadhyay

Shastee Mother in India

Women, particularly grandmothers and mothers, teach their children not to hit or torture any of their domesticated cats in the eastern region of India. They believe that a cat represents some goddess, Shastee Mother in their language, who takes care of children welfare. Mischievous kids, however, love to play with the cats and as these pets hardly return an attack they are frequently ill-treated by their honorable players.

Bast, the cat goddess of Egypt

Cats and especially wild cats are equipped with the art of finishing rats and many vermin in the farm. They are apt in killing snakes too. This might have been the reasons for which Egyptian people, between 2000 B.C. and 390 A.D., have worshiped cats with all seriousness. Bast is the name of the cat goddess of Egypt. People of Egypt have had such belief that the goddess cat can guarantee security, fertility and motherhood.

Change in the cats after domestication

Long after the process of domestication had started on the banks of the river Nile cats began to show that they left much of their traditional ferocity. This restricted growth in the size of their brain and coloration of their beautiful furs lost much of possibilities. Needless to comment on the limitation occurred in the size of their body too.

Cat Goddess in Bubastis

Installation of the shrines of Bast or the cat goddess of Egypt began with much hype. Bubastis was an important city to the eastern side of the Nile and the city was built up as a site for worshiping the goddess Bast. It was built up by King Shoshenq 1 with great devotion. Bubastis became a vibrant marketplace and it developed as a center for annual religious festival where people used to assemble just to worship the goddess Bast. This goddess was offered precious jewels and ornaments by the devotees every year.

Irrational hype for cats in the first century B.C.

Hype for cats was so irrational at some point that laws were framed to save and honor the cats living all over Egypt. A person was sure to be imprisoned and even was sure to face death penalty charges if a cat was killed by him or by his mistakes. One day an Egyptian cat was run over by a horse-riding Roman soldier. Pharaoh Ptolemy XII could not save his life and the Roman soldier was killed. This is a story of the first century B.C.


There were practices of mummification of the cats. Bubastis became a sacred site where cats were mummified with due respect. Death of a domesticated cat was greatly mourned. In order to share suffering of the diseased cat people even shaved their eyebrows. In the writings of the great Greek historian Herodotus one will find how cats in the Egyptian society were valued from religious point of view.

Worshiping banned in Egypt

In 390 AD an Egyptian king banned this practice of worshiping of cats. People of Egypt do not worship a cat at present. The eastern part of India has never experienced any hype about worshiping of cats although this animal is considered as a goddess still by grandmothers and mothers in general.

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author avatar snooky
25th Jul 2010 (#)

Cats are loving and mysterious and have an imperial attitude. there may be something to ancient belifs. I like this very much

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author avatar drelayaraja
27th Jul 2010 (#)

Love this share.

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author avatar Kshirod kumar saikia
5th May 2014 (#)

Please visit this page for more details about worship of cat

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