Almost from the beginning of art, humans have portrayed cats. The animal originally domesticated for the humble purpose of catching mice was already a goddess in ancient Egypt and a beloved household pet in ancient Rome. Throughout history, cats have been a beautiful vessel for symbolic meanings, ranging from dark unruly sensuality to perfect domestic tranquillity. In this book, cats inhabit 170 art masterpieces. Sometimes they are the stars of the work and sometimes they are working their magic from the corners of rooms (in which case both the whole work and a detail showing the cat are both illustrated). Here are paintings by Van Eyck, Raphael, Leonardo, Bruegel, Rembrandt, Chardin, Gainsborough, Manet, Renoir, Bonnard, Gauguin, Matisse, Balthus, Picasso, Warhol and many other famous artists. Stefano Zuffi's charming text tells us what it all means. The cats, meanwhile, are beautiful, seductive and mysterious.