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 Museum Explorer

Birds and beasts in
Ancient Egypt

A seated cat

Height: 42.000 cm
Width: 13.000 cm

EA 64391

A seated cat

From: Saqqara, Egypt
Date: Late Period, after 600 BC

This life-sized cat has gold rings in its nose and ears, a silver collar and a good luck amulet round its neck. Cats were very important in ancient Egypt. As well as keeping them as pets, the Egyptians linked them to a number of gods, in particular the goddess Bastet.

In the Late Period (661-332 BC) it became very popular to bury mummies of cats in special cat cemeteries as part of the worship of Bastet. Temple cats were killed in great numbers in order to be made into these mummies.