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Mummified cat, ancient Egypt, 2000-100 BCE

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Cats in ancient Egypt were considered sacred and were connected with Bastet, the goddess of fertility, protection and pleasure. Bastet was depicted as a woman with the head of a cat or lioness. Cats were worshipped in her honour by people at home and in temples and were mummified along with mice and bowls of milk to feed them in the afterlife. The mummification process was similar to human mummification. The cats were normally placed in a sitting position and the tightly bound cloths were painted with feline features.

maker: Unknown maker

Place made: Egypt


Credit: Science Museum, London

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