Tuesday, November 30, 2010

the naming of cats

today is the 175th anniversary of the birth of author and cat lover samuel langhorne clemens (30 november 1835 - 1910), clemens is better known by his pen name mark twain. to celebrate twain's birth a few of his many remarks on the creatures he loved so much:

A home without a cat -- and a well-fed, well-petted and properly revered cat -- may be a perfect home, perhaps, but how can it prove title?
Pudd'nhead Wilson (1894)

I urged that kings were dangerous. He said, then have cats. He was sure that a royal family of cats would answer every purpose. They would be as useful as any other royal family, they would know as much, they would have the same virtues and the same treacheries, the same disposition to get up shindies with other royal cats, they would be laughably vain and absurd and never know it, they would be wholly inexpensive, finally, they would have as sound a divine right as any other royal house. ... The worship of royalty being founded in unreason, these graceful and harmless cats would easily become as sacred as any other royalties, and indeed more so, because it would presently be noticed that they hanged nobody, beheaded nobody, imprisoned nobody, inflicted no cruelties or injustices of any sort, and so must be worthy of a deeper love and reverence than the customary human king, and would certainly get it.
A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court (1889)

I simply can't resist a cat, particularly a purring one. They are the cleanest, cunningest, and most intelligent things I know, outside of the girl you love, of course.
Mark Twain as quoted in Abroad with Mark Twain and Eugene Field (1922)
by Henry Fisher and Merle De Vore Johnson

snaps of the royal family at casa mouse - top cat queen bee gwen (b. 1992); king tsuki (b.1998); lady stella (unknown date, adopted as an adult but most likely 1994 or 1995)

the naming of cats from the andrew lloyd webber broadway blockbuster cats which was based on old possum's book of practical cats (1939), t.s. eliot's whimsical collection of poems


ArtSparker said...

Beautiful companions you have. Do you know the book the musical is based on, T.S. Eliot's "Old Possum's book of practical cats"?

tony said...

Some English Cats!

Roy said...

Hmmmm... You realize, of course, that cats, not humans, run the world. We're only here for their amusement.

Betsy Brock said...

Awww...my two cats are long gone after living long, happy lives. This made me miss them! They do make a house very homey!

California Girl said...

I love cats. I miss my last one, Maggie. She died almost a year ago. I'm getting ready to find another.

We saw "Cats" on Broadway 3 mos after it opened. The set was unlike anything I'd seen and I loved every moment. Thanks for the reminder.

Kat Mortensen said...

Oh, your pictures are so good, Mouse! I love Lady Stella in repose, especially.
We lost our Queen "Bee", Blanche and it still pangs.

I didn't realize Twain was a cat-lover. One more reason to love him!


Kat Mortensen said...

P.S. I saw "Cats" for the first time a little over a year ago and I LOVED it! I'm a big fan of "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats".

Watson said...

Your cats all look so contented and loved kimy. (I dare not use "mouse" in this post!) I'm a dog "person" myself but believe in universal love.

Gary said...

Happy Birthday Mark Twain!

Did you see Cats on Broadway? I took my mom to see it and neither one of us were very impressed. I can imagine the hubbub if you, Mouse, went to see that show. Mayhem!!