In American culture, black cats, pumpkins, and cute little ghosts decorate many a home as Halloween draws nears, however, it isn’t all cutesy stuff. The poor black cat has endured a lot mixed press across the ages.
According to thingsthatgoboo.com cats were revered by the ancient Egyptians, feared by the Druids, and believed to be the familiars of witches and the bearers of bad luck throughout much of Medieval Europe.
Hartz, the pet care company, reports, “Black cats have long served as objects of superstition. In Medieval France and Spain, black cats were considered bringers of bad luck and curses to any human they came near, and were associated with witchcraft.” And yet, these same adorable creatures are often highly prized in the British Islands and Japan as bringers of prosperity and good luck.
A black cat is considered a fine wedding gift in Great Britain’s English Midlands, while British sailors of old thought having a black cat on board their ships brought them good luck and a safe return home. In Scotland, it is believed to be a sign of coming prosperity when a black cat shows up on your doorstep. Furthermore, in Ireland and England, a black cat crossing one’s path is viewed as a good omen – namely, good luck is coming your way.
This is opposite of many American superstitions claim that the same black cat crossing your path, or walking away from you will bring bad luck. ARGH! If that were true, we’d all be in a heap of trouble, because according the ASPCA, the gene responsible for black cats is dominant! Yeppers, that means there are tons of black kitties out there! *SMILE*
While I love to read and write about all things supernatural, I do not for a minute believe the color of a feline’s fur makes it good or bad. It’s simply an animal. We once had a cat named Blackie. Yeppers, you guessed it, he was black as night. Sadly, he also slipped out the front door one day just as he was hitting maturity, and right before his appointment with the vet to be neutered. I think he must have done so deliberately because he was our rural neighborhood’s feline version of Casanova for many years. *SIGH* We never could coax him back home. I still fondly recall Blackie as the most affectionate beast I’ve ever known. To me, that’s a good thing because everyone needs a snuggle now and then.