Galleries 23 & 24
Cats’ personalities have made them Internet stars today. In ancient Egypt, cats were associated with divinities, as revealed in Divine Felines: Cats of Ancient Egypt. Cat coffins and representations of the cat-headed goddess Bastet are among the extraordinary objects that reveal felines’ critical role in ancient Egyptian religious, social, and political life. Dating from the Middle Kingdom to the Byzantine Period, the more than eighty works include statues, amulets, and other luxury items decorated with feline features, which enjoyed special status among Egyptians. The exhibition, organized by the Brooklyn Museum, also dedicates a small section to cats’ canine counterparts.