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The Cat: 3500 Years of the Cat in Art

    • Ratings :
    • 4.7 stars
  • |
  • 21-40 Days
  • Get it to United Arab Emirates by 09-November to 28-November.
AED 1244.30

The cat’s reputation and place in society have been subject to twists and turns of fate that are all reflected in art. While cats were deified by the ancient Egyptians, they were vilified by the medieval Church, before the Renaissance and Baroque periods saw their gradual rehabilitation. By the eighteenth century cats had become popular household pets worldwide. Generations of artists have treasured their contrariness and beauty, and while the cat does not always occupy centre stage in paintings, it always adds an extra symbolic dimension to a picture, or illuminates its meaning in an unexpected way. This sumptuously illustrated book examines the relationship between cats and humans from ancient times to the present, offering fascinating insights into the prominence of the cat in art in cultures worldwide. Thematic chapters explore in detail a rich and rewarding collection of paintings, prints, drawings and sculptures, creating a book that will have enduring appeal among art lovers and cat lovers alike.

Editorial Reviews


This large-scale, richly annotated pictorial celebrates a partnership [between cats and humans] that seems to be going strong. — Barnes and Noble

The Cat…gets a huge paw stamp of approval… a rather splendid book — The Lady

Thanks to a new book from independent London publishers Merrell, we now have a lavish and delightfully illustrated synopsis of the role of cats in our visual culture… a thorough monument to feline fascination. — Prospect Magazine

The serious and carefull writing of this book is belied by it’s coffee-table format, although the profusion of illustrations will make it the envy of other art historians. &mdash The Art Newspaper

About the Author

Caroline Bugler Editor of Art Quarterly, the magazine of the Art Fund, the fundraising charity for works of art. Her previous publications include an artistic guide to Vienna.


Customer Review


Another Must for the Cat Lover's Library

Once I saw this beautiful collection, I had to own it. Never mind that I have quite a few other books about cats; this thorough collection is inspiring. Not only are the photographs beautiful, the book is a tribute to my favorite animal. While I was already aware of a number of ways cats have appeared in art in Egypt and Japan and other cultures, what surprised me the most was learning about the breadth of "cat art"--in Greek mosaics, Peruvian ceramics, and illustrated manuscripts. I was also surprised to find a cat by Klee and another featured in a painting by Picasso. A few big cats are included as well.D.R. Ransdell, author of "The Secret Lives of the Pink House Cats."

by D. R. Ransdell, December 1, 2012


Amazing images and art history information...

As the center of interest or merely a bystander, the cat features in art from different periods and cultures. Fascinating to see how the art changes but not the look or behaviors of the cats. The artists often use the cat to add a message or meaning to the images and this conveys so much about the artist and the culture. A good book for people interested in art history and/or cats!

by L. Brannel, April 7, 2014


Great book!

If you’re a cat lover, this is a really interesting book with great historical references and fantastic pictures. In fact, this is my second copy that I bought so I can cut out pics and frame them!

by Eric Gon, August 1, 2018


Love it!

Love the book!

by Gav, August 14, 2019


The book really should be titled "The Cat Primarily in European Art From the 14th Through the 18th Century."

While I enjoyed the quality of the images in the book, and the thematic arrangement, I was disappointed in its limited scope in both time and geography. The book really should be titled "The Cat Primarily in European Art From the 14th Through the 18th Century." There is a brief chapter of images from ancient Egypt and the Roman Empire, and a scattering of images in the first couple of chapters from Japan and China. That's pretty much it in terms of non-European art. There is little North American art, three or four Russian images, and almost no Near East, Latin American or African images. It is very clear that the author's expertise and interest is in British, French, and Dutch art, especially from the 1400s through the 1800s. The scholarship and commentary on these images is impressive (in parts too detailed and dull); her remarks on images from other parts of the world is cursory and shallow.

by Takeitlightly, March 1, 2015


Adorable cats

Excellent book for cat lovers. I loved it.

by Peggy HinaekianAmazon Customer, April 14, 2016


Outstanding Book!

This publication was all we hoped for. It is an outstanding quality book and I recommend it to all cat lovers. Truly outstanding.

by tony g., March 11, 2014


Five Stars

Great purchase!

by Kathryn Kuntz, March 23, 2015



An absolute gem of a book. Informative, large beautiful images of the work. Quite outstanding.

by Sally Harp, November 27, 2019


for cat and art addicts

intelligent, scrupulously researched, outstanding anthology acts as painlessly educational history of art and survey of a huge spectrum of attitudes towards and attachments to our most ubiquitous domestic animal companion.

by BR41, September 6, 2013



Lovely book, saw it at the RA but much cheaper here. If you like cats and or art, then this is the book to have. Lovely prints of cats through the ages from ancient China to the present day. A pleasing purchase.

by The Doctor, April 12, 2013


For Cat Lovers

This beautifully presented book was given as a gift to a cat lover who was delighted, wonderful pictures and illustrations.

by Patti, February 15, 2014


The Cat: 3500 Years of the Cat in Art

Absolutely fantastic book! Very nice photos and descriptions. The book is even more informative and illustrated than I expected. Thanks a lot!

by Oleh Makarenko, May 4, 2014

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