Cats, love them or hate them, they have had a profound affect on human society for millenia. I myself have a cat and you may recall him, from my series of case file posts "My cat is an Arsehole".
|Lowenmensch Lion Man, dated to 32,000 BC|
Thus from that time on, felines, whether it be the domestic cat, sabre tooth cat, lion, leopard or other, have appeared repeatedly in human myth and legend.
Allow me to tell you about a few...
You are all likely to be familiar with the sphynx, griffin, and chimera's that hail from Egyptian and Greek mythologies, and if you're not then shame on you.
I'm going to enlighten you to some of the more lesser popular Cat mythologies.
If you take yourself to Japan and visit a Shinto or Buddhist temple you are likely to come face to face with a Shishi and Koma-inu, also known as temple lions. In pairs, they become shrine and temple guardians who possess magical powers to repel evil.
Interestingly enough, the differences between the shishi and koma-inu (Korean lion-dog) are becoming increasingly subtle.
|Karino Eitoku (狩野永徳) in Aduchi Momoyama period (安土桃山時代, 1568-1600|