|"Le moindre des petits félins est déjà en lui-même un vrai chef-d'oeuvre." --Léonarde de Vinci|
(The least of little cats is already in himself a masterpiece.)
I, and millions of French people who have a predilection for any and all cats, agree with author Colette who said, "Il n'y a pas de chat ordinaire." There are no ordinary cats. (Less than five percent of the domestic cat population in France is purebred.) By common accord, alley cats or chats de gouttière are most respectfully denominated chats de race Européen by the Fédération Féline Française and, like a seigneurial privilege, are attributed a category in cat shows for which no particular standards dare be imposed.
les pyjamas du chat: the cat's pajamas
La nuit tous les chat sont gris: At night all cats are gray; in the obscurity, the difference between people or things becomes indistinguishable.
Did you know that Leonardo da Vinci spent the final three years of his life in France in the service of François I, and is entombed in the Chapel de Saint-Hubert at the Château d'Amboise on the banks of the Loire?
For a history of the development of the Sacred Cat of Burma or "Birman" in France, click here; for a timeline of the breed, in French and with vintage photos, click here; or for the story envelopped in a charming legend penned by Marcelle Adam, click here.
Text & photo ©2011 P.B. Lecron