84(4) pg 212-222

The relationship between man and cat in the medieval and early modern Low Countries - I. The functional, demonological and imaginery cat

ABSTRACTThe relationship between man and cat in the Low Countries between 600 and 1800 can bedescribed in such terms as kaleidoscopic, but also contradictory, problematic and ambiguous. Inthe early Middle Ages, people - particularly intellectuals within the Church - came to appreciatethe useful aspects of cats in their contacts with them, but from the 12th century, they begandemonizing the animal. At the same time, in both the literature and visual arts, a symbolicrepresentation was being developed that associated the cat with other negative qualities, such aslaziness, vanity, pride, and especially lust.

Full text: 
pp 212-222
Veterinary past