The legends always attract our attention, to think about the possibility that things happened in a different way, whether heroic or supernatural, fascinates us.
There are many theories about why people from Madrid are called Cats, the most purists say that to be called “Cat”, your parents and grandparents must have been also born in Madrid. Be that as it may, here we are going to tell you three possible origins of this fact.
The most extended legend goes back to the Muslim era. Madrid or Maŷrit as it was known at that time was founded in the year 852, as an Arab citadel to protect the kingdom of Toledo, thanks to its strategic position on top of a hill. In the year 1083, the Christians with Alfonso VI at the head were willing to conquer the fortified city.
One of the soldiers took the initiative, climbed the great wall (12 meters) and changed the Arab flag for the Christian one. That was the signal for the beginning of the assault. When Alfonso VI saw such an agile soldier climbing the wall exclaimed aloud: “He looks like a cat.” From that moment the soldier came up with a new name. It is said that people with the surname Cat, are descendants of this brave soldier.
Another story tells us that people from Madrid are called Cats because centuries ago there was a fee to pay to enter the city through one of its doors. As not everyone was willing to pay, they climbed the wall to enter Madrid as agile cats.
Finally, the most modern history is that the locals are called cats because they love to go out at night.
Whether or not these stories are true, they trap us, like all the mysteries that accompany Madrid and that invite us to discover in our tours.