The Celtic rite, revisited

The pagan Celts, as already noted, were infamous for sacrificing large numbers of cats in wicker baskets, who were roasted over a fire while they screamed in agony. The ancient ritual persisted for centuries in some parts of Europe and was conducted by two very different groups. One were the “neo-pagans,” who existed within the Christian culture but were still pagans “on the inside,” conducting the old religion by night, out of sight of the church authorities. The other cat burners were, at times, the Christians themselves, who associated cats (especially black ones) with Satanism and witchcraft.
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