This is why you should have a cat y’all. Egyptians believed that cats repelled evil spirits.
Cats are evil spirits. They’re just the strongest so all others must bow to their greatness.
Actually according to legend, cats are guardians of the Underworld. So once you are dead if you try to sneak back into the land of the living they send you back where you came from. They protect the living from the dead.
While there were many other feline goddesses worshiped by the Ancient Egyptians, Bast was the only one represented as a domestic cat. Cats were believed to be a manifestation of the goddess Bast. (Bast/Bastet originally was a Lion, or a lion-headed goddess, but her head eventually changed to a domestic cat as legends shifted)
Bast was originally a goddess of Warfare, but over the years it shifted to protection and fertility (and also the protector of all cats, because Bast is a badass like that)
Nearly every Celtic country has cat-legends. The Welsh believed that ship-cats could predict weather and tides. The English were worried about cats stealing a babies breath and the Scots had a very gruesome ritual called the Taghairm. (There is another ritual of the same name not involving cats.)
In one version, the Taghairm is said to be one of the most effective means of raising the devil, and getting unlawful wishes gratified; the ritual included roasting cats alive, one after the other, for several days, without eating. This supposedly summoned a legion of devils in the guise of black cats, with their master leading them. Kitty Devil~
Another variation of the ritual was said to summon a demonic cat called Big Ears, who would grant the summoners answers to their questions, and fulfill their wishes. Basically the same thing, but Lucifer wasn’t involved (yay?)
Norse mythology said cats were sacred to Freya, goddess of Warfare and Hunting, as well as love, beauty and fertility. Her chariot was drawn by two cats, and if you wanted her blessing on your marriage or harvest, you could leave a bowl of milk outside.
She apparently had such a soft spot for cats that she would bless those who were kind to them. If a cat showed up at your marriage, that was a sweet sign of fortune.
The Babylonians believed that the souls of priests were escorted to paradise on the back of a cat. The Babylonians also encouraged the overbreeding of cats so they would hunt and keep away the vermin.
There’s a ton more history and mythology attached to felines, and I definitely encourage people to check it out sometime.
Don’t forget about Sekhmet, the lioness and war goddess of Egypt! Fierce.