Sly and underhand cat immortalized in a bas relief at Mahabalipuram, India

Arjuna’s Penance: 7th-8th century Mamallapuram, Tamil Nadu, India

In a famous Indian fable in the Panchatantra, an ancient collection of animal fables in Sanskrit verse and prose from 200 BCE-300CE, the domestic cat is portrayed as sly, underhand and hypocritical. The fable which I describe below is immortalised in a famous bas relief at Mahabalipuram in southeastern India, on the coast. The …

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