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01 July 2011

Gothic Animals and Pets - Part 2

 Here's the part 2 of animals often connected to goths. Click HERE to read part one!

CATS:



Let's start with some history facts:

In ancient Egypt cats were sacred animals, with Bast often depicted in cat form, sometimes taking on the warlike aspect of a lioness. The Romans are often credited with introducing the domestic cat from Egypt to Europe; in Roman Aquitaine, a 1st or 2nd century epitaph of a young girl holding a cat is one of two earliest depictions of the Roman domesticated cat. However, it is possible that cats were already kept in Europe prior to the Roman Empire, as they may have already been present in Britain in the late Iron Age. Domestic cats were spread throughout much of the rest of the world during the Age of Discovery, as they were carried on sailing ships to control shipboard rodents and as good-luck charms.Several ancient religions believed that cats are exalted souls, companions or guides for humans, that they are all-knowing but are mute so they cannot influence decisions made by humans. In Japan, the Maneki Neko is a cat that is a symbol of good fortune. Although there are no sacred species in Islam, some writers have stated that Muhammad had a favorite cat, Muezza. He is reported to have loved cats so much that "he would do without his cloak rather than disturb one that was sleeping on it".


 (statue of cat in Ancient Egypt connected to goddess Bast (or Bastet)


Freyja—the goddess of love, beauty, and fertility in Norse mythology—is depicted as riding a chariot drawn by cats.


Many cultures have negative superstitions about cats. An example would be the belief that a black cat "crossing your path" leads to bad luck, or that cats are witches' familiars used to augment a witch's powers and skills.
(This is mainly why we goths are mostly connected to black cats, because ignorant people think we are all into witchcraft and that we do black evil magic -_-")

This led to the widespread extermination of cats in Europe in medieval times. The Black Plague was spread by fleas carried by infected rats, and the killing of cats ostensibly caused an increase in the rat population. The killing of cats in Medieval Ypres is commemorated in the innocuous present-day Kattenstoet (cat parade).

According to a myth in many cultures, cats have multiple lives. In many countries, they are believed to have nine lives, but in some Spanish-speaking regions they are said to have seven lives, while in Turkish and Arabic traditions the number of lives is six. The myth is attributed to the natural suppleness and swiftness cats exhibit to escape life-threatening situations. Also lending credence to this myth is that falling cats often land on their feet because of an inbuilt automatic twisting reaction and are able to twist their bodies around to land feet first, though they can still be injured or killed by a high fall.



SPIDERS:




Spiders (order Araneae) are air-breathing arthropods that have eight legs, and chelicerae with fangs that inject venom. They are the largest order of arachnids and rank seventh in total species diversity among all other groups of organisms. Spiders are found worldwide on every continent except for Antarctica, and have become established in nearly every habitat with the exception of air and sea colonization.
Spiders have been the focus of fears, stories and mythologies of various cultures for centuries. They have symbolized patience due to their hunting technique of setting webs and waiting for prey, as well as mischief and malice for the painful death their venom causes.

Web-spinning also caused the association of the spider with creation myths as they seem to have the ability to produce their own worlds. The Moche people of ancient Peru worshipped nature.They placed emphasis on animals and often depicted spiders in their art.

In Gothic fashion it's very common to find clothes and jewels representing webs or spiders.



PART 3 coming soon ^_^
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