When Cats Reigned Like Kings: On the Trail of the Sacred Cats

When Cats Reigned Like Kings: On the Trail of the Sacred Cats

by Georgie Anne Geyer
     
 

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Chasing an irresistible mystery across the globe, journalist Georgie Anne Geyer conducted exhaustive research into the little-known puzzle of how cats came to occupy their unique position in the lives of humans. Treated with the tenacity, resourcefulness, and narrative instinct of a seasoned foreign correspondent, the investigation yielded unexpected answers -- and… See more details below

Overview

Chasing an irresistible mystery across the globe, journalist Georgie Anne Geyer conducted exhaustive research into the little-known puzzle of how cats came to occupy their unique position in the lives of humans. Treated with the tenacity, resourcefulness, and narrative instinct of a seasoned foreign correspondent, the investigation yielded unexpected answers -- and posed tantalizing new questions. The result is a remarkable book, bound to delight and amaze cat fanciers and adventure seekers.

It was Geyer's curiosity about her own cats that inspired her to study the history of human-feline relations and especially cats' exalted status among the ancients as royal or sacred beings. Her quest spanned the earth. In Egypt, Geyer learned of the cat-goddess Bastet and of the cat's role in the transmigration of souls. In Myanmar she saw Leonardo DiCaprio, Ricky Martin, and the other incongruously named cats of the Nga Phe Kyaung monastery, trained by the monks to jump through hoops. She even met a family who dutifully guards the heritage of the Japanese bobtail, cultivating the line in -- of all places -- rural Virginia.

Richly illustrated with photos of Geyer's journeys and historical cat images, When Cats Reigned like Kings also presents a Family of Cat section that describes the origins and characteristics of the 38-40 recognized modern cat breeds, including photos of each.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

When Cats Reigned Like Kings: On the Trail of the Sacred Cats provides a lively blend of travel, autobiography and insights into cats and comes from an author who explores connections between the royal felines of ancient civilizations and domestic cats of today. Her in-depth research into how cats came to be human pets is detailed and sparked by her curiosity about her own cats. The history is detailed in impeccable as well as lively, while photos of the author's travels and historical cat images accompany travel details, historical facts and descriptions of over forty recognized modern cat breeds. The result is a delightful and fun book for cat lovers and history and travel buffs alike!”

The Bookwatch

“An enticing read for any cat lover or just simply those fascinated by human history, "When Cats Reigned Like Kings" is a choice and much recommended addition to pet and history collections.”

Library Bookwatch

"Starting with Pasha, Georgie Anne Geyer treats us to a delightful parade of regal cats that any diplomat would be pleased and honored to serve."

Robert Oakley, former U.S. ambassador to Pakistan, Somalia, and Zaire, and Phyllis Elliott Oakley, former director of Research and Intelligence, U.S. Department of State

"Ms. Geyer's colorful history illuminates the noble cats of ages past and their progression to more egalitarian American felines. These old cats can't bark, but they can learn new tricks."

Dr. Zbigniew Brzezinski, international scholar of strategy

"Cats may look at kings, they say. But kings will certainly need to read Geyer's elegant, sleek, and purring book on cats. For cats are kings, she explains. A book for every cat lover and every king, especially those who have some doubts as to whether their own young human royals have quite upheld the fine standards of behavior that the royal cats of history bequeathed to us!"

—Robert Lacey, author of Monach: The Life and Reign of Elizabeth II and Great Tales from English History: The Truth About King Arthur, Lady Codiva, Richard the Lionheart, and More

"After fifty years of judging cats from man-made standards, it is difficult to look at a cat or kitten any more without faulting it—but in her book, Georgie Anne Geyer has made us appreciate and honor every cat and kitten and see the wondrous history of legend, suffering, and eventual triumph that has characterized all of their lives."

Richard H. Gebhardt, international all-breed judge and former president of the Cat Fanciers' Association

"Geyer's book on the Royal Cats is even better than Halle Berry's movie Catwoman."

—Esther Coopersmith, former U.S. representative to the United Nations

"A fascinating trip into the cat world from one cool-cat writer."

Paul Duke, veteran journalist and moderator of PBS’s Washington Week in Review

“Veteran foreign reporter Geyer brings her profiling skills to a more lighthearted but still complex topic—‘the true history, legends, and sagas of the cats who served the human need for symbols of the spirit and of sacredness and royalty’—in this charming blend of reportage and personal history.”

—Publishers Weekly

“Our spiritual connection with cats dates back to an 8,000-year-old cat burial in a human cemetery on the island of Cyprus. Geyer explores this age-old relationship with warmth, wit, and a large dollop of scholarship in a book that is sure to become a basic reference for the professional cat lover.”

—Melinda A. Zeder, curator, National Museum of History, Smithsonian Institution

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780740746970
Publisher:
Andrews McMeel Publishing
Publication date:
10/01/2004
Pages:
272
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.20(d)

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