The 13 extraordinary women you’re about to see did not conceal their love for all things feline (there’s a bonus addition at the end because, you know, 13 is a cabalistic number). The number 13 is heavily associated with all the lore surrounding witches, as well as the relationship between cats and women, which has been historically maligned by stories of devil worshipping. In reality, though, there are many examples of famous people who were very vocal about their preference for cats.
Cat ladies have been, and still are, some of the classiest, most gorgeous and incredible women ever to set foot on this planet, and here is the evidence.
Queen Elizabeth Taylor is the epitome of everything classy and beautiful in this world (in my book, Beyoncé has nothing on her). She was famous for several things, apart from her histrionic record: marrying the most beautiful men of all time, looking gorgeous 24/7, and loving all living creatures. (Yes, she did wear a lot of fur, but it was a different time. Deal with it.)
She was famously photographed doting on many very lucky creatures, including horses, dogs, and cats small and big. Her heart and soul was feline, and if you don’t believe me, just read these lines from her Rolling Stone interview with Jonathan Cott about her encounter with a wild lion:
“And the lion opened his mouth, and I saw these teeth, I could see like strings of saliva attaching the teeth as he yawned, and he let out a roar that didn’t make me jump — because it’s as if I knew what he was going to do — and I still kept staring at him and he sort of moved his eyes away from me, started very gently padding away from me, turned and looked at me again over his shoulder, and then just went into a very relaxed trot and disappeared into the bushes”.
She out-stared a freaking lion. Case closed.
The Brontë Sisters
These English literary legends had at least three cats. Emily’s essay, “The Cat,” begins with these wise words:
“I can say with sincerity that I like cats; also I can give very good reasons why those who despise them are wrong.
A cat is an animal who has more human feelings than almost any other being”. Meow.
The French sex symbol of her generation was also a staunch animal defender. The PETA icon once said, “I am really a cat transformed into a woman. I purr. I scratch. And sometimes I bite.”
Zsa Zsa Gabor
Another diva for the ages, she was known for her witty remarks and quippy quotes. Her cats were her best friends, and she made sure the world knew it: “My husband said it was him or the cat. I miss him sometimes.” Well said, Mrs Gabor.
During the 2012 Art Basel Fair, a reportedly drunk Demi Moore picked up a stray tabby that was lounging around a very exclusive Chanel dinner at the Soho Beach House. The ex-stray then proceeded to take residence on the lap of the actress, where he ate all sorts of gourmet meats and cheeses. The kitten would later be adopted by Nicky Hilton, who named him Soho.
The founder of modern nursing, Ms. Nightingale was also an avid writer of letters and extremely fond of her dozens of cats: sometimes she kept as many as 60 in her property. Not content with that, she also did something that will be very familiar to those who keep pets: she gave them dialogue and ascribed thoughts to them that were -probably- hers, like in this letter that she wrote to a friend:
“I learn a lesson of life from a little kitten of mine, one of two. The old cat comes in and says, very cross, “I didn’t ask you in here, I like to have my Missus to myself!” And then he runs at them. The bigger and handsomer kitten runs away, but the littler one stands her ground, and when the old enemy comes near enough kisses his nose, and makes peace. That is the lesson of life, to kiss one’s enemy’s nose, always standing one’s ground”.
This extraordinary femme fatale had an iconic role as Catwoman, but her onstage persona was as feline, if not more than, her role in the series: She was known in the industry for being unattainable and extremely volatile. Here are her thoughts on her character, which say a lot:
“As you’ve witnessed, Catwoman is the ultimate diva. From the pages of comic books to both small and big screens, Catwoman continues to evolve and mature like a true cat. Catwoman, is a unique breed, never taking the same form twice. But whatever form she takes, she’ll always reign supreme. A dog maybe man’s best friend, but a cat is everyone’s favourite feline fatale.”
Louisa May Alcott
The author of the books for all the girls dressed in pink everywhere was accused on one occasion of having “an inordinate love of cats,” and once, when asked about which vices she wished to have less of, she answered: “Idleness, wilfulness, vanity, impatience, impudence, pride, selfishness, activity, love of cats.” I disagree about it being a “vice,” though.
The Anglo-Indian actress was a cat lover ever since she was a little girl at the Convent of the Sacred Heart, where, as she said, “I was the youngest child there and so I imagine I was rather spoiled. I remember I was allowed to take cats to bed with me. I’ve always been mad about cats.”
One of Vitti’s most beloved roles was in the film High Infidelity (1964), directed by Luciano Salce. Vitti was seen carrying a Siamese cat while on set on several occasions.
The American actress, model, and fashion designer has said about her love for felines: “There’s something extremely mystical about cats. Growing up I had two cats, my family had them before I was born so they were already part of the household, both girls. When I was really young I thought all cats were girls and all dogs were boys. I had this very feminine, feline energy from cats. I’ve definitely come across some cats where I believed other people that I knew were possibly reincarnated in these cats.”
She has been very vocal about her love for her two cats, Meredith and Olivia, and melted everyone’s hearts when asked what were her plans were for after the Grammys: “I’m going to hang out with my friends, and then I go home to the cats.”
In 2014, she composed and performed “The Twinkle Song,” about a cat knocking on heaven’s door: “And I had a dream, we were being chased by a monster/ Or maybe they were aliens/ But I wasn’t scared cause you were there/ And I had a dream, we took karate/ That’s when you said you loved me/ You loved me”. Cats all over the place indeed.
Honorary cat lady and guest of honor on this list. Tiffany, Romeo, and Delilah are just three of the cats Freddie loved. He even composed a song in honor of one of them, and it’s completely on point:
Delilah, Delilah, oh my, oh my, oh my – you’re irresistible – ooh ooh ooh
You make me smile when I’m just about to cry
You bring me hope, you make me laugh – and I like it
You get away with murder, so innocent
But when you throw a moody you’re all claws and you bite.
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