Why Were Cats So Important in Ancient Times?

Cats have been one of the most popular pets for thousands of years. They have been domesticated since ancient times and have played an important role in many civilizations. In this article, we will explore why cats were so important in ancient times.

The Egyptians and Cats

One of the most famous civilizations that had a special relationship with cats was ancient Egypt. The Egyptians believed that cats were sacred animals and they worshipped them as gods. They believed that cats had special powers that could protect their homes and families from harm.

The Egyptians even had a goddess named Bastet, who was depicted with the head of a cat. She was considered to be the protector of women, children, and domestic cats. The Egyptians would often mummify their cats when they died as a sign of respect.

Cats as Pest Control

Cats were not just worshipped in ancient times; they also served a practical purpose. Cats were excellent at controlling pests such as mice and rats. This was particularly important in ancient times when food storage was more difficult, and pests could cause serious problems for people.

Cats’ hunting skills made them valuable assets to have around homes and farms. They could keep food stores safe from pests, which helped prevent famines and ensured that people had enough to eat.

Cats in Mythology

Cats also played an important role in mythology in many cultures around the world. In Norse mythology, there is a goddess named Freyja who rides a chariot pulled by two giant cats.

In Japanese folklore, there is a cat spirit called Bakeneko that can transform into humans or other creatures. In Islamic tradition, it is believed that the prophet Muhammad had a pet cat named Muezza who he loved very much.


In conclusion, cats were incredibly important to many civilizations throughout history for a variety of reasons. They were worshipped as gods, served as pest control, and played important roles in mythology.

Today, cats are still popular pets, and many people appreciate their companionship and affectionate nature. Whether you’re a cat lover or not, it’s clear that these animals have had a significant impact on human history and culture.