Holiday Cats form a subset of my Caticons collection. Sadly, space constraints did not permit us to include these whimsical felines in the Caticons book, so instead I am sharing a few here as a holiday “cat” treat.
Dreidels are the traditional toys of Hanukkah, the Jewish Festival of Lights, commemorating the re-dedication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem in the 2nd century BCE. A dreidel is typically designed as a spinning top with the following Hebrew letters on each side, nun, gimmel, hei and shin. These letters together form an acronym for nes gadol hayah sham, “a great miracle happened there” referring to the single bottle of oil, a one day’s supply, that miraculously fueled the menorah in the Holy temple for eight days. This decorative porcelain cat version features cat faces on four sides, a cat paw handle, and cat paw prints on the base.
Of course, the first holiday cat to come to mind is the demonic Black Cat of Halloween, portrayed as a consort to witches. However, images of cats as angels also abound such as this white Cat Angel Christmas tree topper, shown with a cat dressed as a king in a fur-trimmed robe (faux fur, OF COURSE) and a crown.
This metal cat angel has fish in its wings and wears a fish necklace. A fish is a traditional Christian symbol for Jesus, originally used by Christians to identify each other. However, in this case, they are probably simply a reference to one of cat’s favorite foods–fish.
This charming Christmas Nativity scene, interpreted in feline form, features a pure white Persian as the Virgin Mary and a lovely ginger kitten “swaddled” in a blue blanket and sitting on a “crown” of straw as the baby Jesus. Joseph is the cat with the red head scarf. Cats amusingly dressed in lamb skins represent sheep, while a cat with a crook serves as their shepherd. Even the wise men with crowns and regal capes are “catified” bringing the Baby Jesus a gold ball of yarn, representing the traditional gift of gold, a symbol of kingship. A cat with a drum, a modern addition to the traditional creche, rounds out the scene.