20th Century LOLcat

Old newspaper clipping depicting an apparently blissed-out kitten.

Found pressed between the pages of an old book was the newspaper clipping above, depicting a kitten seemingly in a transport of bliss. The caption reads: “Charmed! A kitten over which music has a strange fascination.” I’ve lightly photoshopped the original scan of the clipping, which is rather faded and yellowed.

The book is considerably older than the clipping: a copy of the 1853 eleventh edition of Isaac D’Israeli’s Curiosities of Literature. This is a work I’ve long enjoyed dipping into; I’ve owned several copies of its various editions over the years. At one time I went as far as scanning and uploading a copy of it (beginning not long before Google Books' mass-digitization made it an even more quixotic endeavour than it might otherwise have been). A few years ago I’d been in need of freeing up some bookshelf-space, and deaccessioned a couple of multi-volume copies of the Curiosities, obtaining this single-volume one in their stead.

The specific copy I bought had ostensibly once belonged to the library of the politician Denis Healey, and indeed there’s a pencil inscription inside: Denis Healey / Withyham / May ‘77, at which time he was Chancellor of the Exchequer. I paid £20 for it. I have no way of knowing at what point in the book’s life the clipping was inserted, but like to think that Healey may have placed it there himself.