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Macavity: The Mystery Cat Analysis

Author: poem of T.S. Eliot Type: poem Views: 27

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Macavity's a Mystery Cat: he's called the Hidden Paw--
For he's the master criminal who can defy the Law.
He's the bafflement of Scotland Yard, the Flying Squad's despair:
For when they reach the scene of crime--Macavity's not there!

Macavity, Macavity, there's no on like Macavity,
He's broken every human law, he breaks the law of gravity.
His powers of levitation would make a fakir stare,
And when you reach the scene of crime--Macavity's not there!
You may seek him in the basement, you may look up in the air--
But I tell you once and once again, Macavity's not there!

Macavity's a ginger cat, he's very tall and thin;
You would know him if you saw him, for his eyes are sunken in.
His brow is deeply lined with thought, his head is highly doomed;
His coat is dusty from neglect, his whiskers are uncombed.
He sways his head from side to side, with movements like a snake;
And when you think he's half asleep, he's always wide awake.

Macavity, Macavity, there's no one like Macavity,
For he's a fiend in feline shape, a monster of depravity.
You may meet him in a by-street, you may see him in the square--
But when a crime's discovered, then Macavity's not there!

He's outwardly respectable. (They say he cheats at cards.)
And his footprints are not found in any file of Scotland Yard's.
And when the larder's looted, or the jewel-case is rifled,
Or when the milk is missing, or another Peke's been stifled,
Or the greenhouse glass is broken, and the trellis past repair--
Ay, there's the wonder of the thing! Macavity's not there!

And when the Foreign Office finds a Treaty's gone astray,
Or the Admiralty lose some plans and drawings by the way,
There may be a scap of paper in the hall or on the stair--
But it's useless of investigate--Macavity's not there!
And when the loss has been disclosed, the Secret Service say:
"It must have been Macavity!"--but he's a mile away.
You'll be sure to find him resting, or a-licking of his thumbs,
Or engaged in doing complicated long division sums.

Macavity, Macavity, there's no one like Macacity,
There never was a Cat of such deceitfulness and suavity.
He always has an alibit, or one or two to spare:
And whatever time the deed took place--MACAVITY WASN'T THERE!
And they say that all the Cats whose wicked deeds are widely known
(I might mention Mungojerrie, I might mention Griddlebone)
Are nothing more than agents for the Cat who all the time
Just controls their operations: the Napoleon of Crime!


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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

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I felt a lot of similarities between Macavity and Lewis Carroll's Cheshire Cat. Both could defy the laws of gravity as well as leave no footprints. Even the deviant personalities made them alike. Also I want to point out that this poem was most likely based of a man described as a cat (a man called a cat was usually a pimp or criminal)

| Posted on 2016-03-31 | by a guest

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I think that it is very interesting summary about macavity about a cat it show that a cat can also be a criminal and this poem has unique thinking :-):-D

| Posted on 2015-11-16 | by a guest

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Macavity is an ginger cat with unique powers of levitation. His head is domed and he is always planning crimes and their execution.

| Posted on 2015-10-06 | by a guest

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I think the poem is about Adam Worth, because a Scotland Yard detective nicknamed him "the Napoleon of the criminal world", but Worth is referred to as "the Napoleon of Crime." I don't know...Maybe not, it's just what came to mind when I read it...

| Posted on 2015-04-14 | by a guest

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TS Eliot is a very nice person:).
Okay done this is my analysis.

| Posted on 2013-04-23 | by a guest

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In T.S Eliot\'s poem, Mcavity the mystery cat of villanious character is described. Macavity is a tall and thin individual who is always upto some crime. He is too clever to leave any evidence of his guilt. He is the confusion of every agencies in the world including Scotland Yard and Flying Squad who specialized investigating crime. There is never enough proof to arrest him and he never found remotely near the mystery of crime.
Not only does he breaks the human law but also breaks the law of gravity. his brows are deeply lining as a result of continuous planning of crime. He is neglected by society and wears a dusty coat. Macavity has sunken eyes and a highly doomed eyes. He never combs his whisker and thus bears untidy. He spends his time plotting for his criminal acts and how to carry them out.

| Posted on 2012-12-19 | by a guest

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Macavity is actually Adam West the 19th century criminal who was nicknamed \"Napoleon of Crime\" by Scotland Yard. West is also speculated to be the inspiration behind the creation of Prof. Moriarty, the nemesis of Sherlock Holmes.

| Posted on 2012-06-18 | by a guest

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MaCavity truly is metaphor for today\'s politicians and bankers who can commit any economic crime and get away with it.Since they write the rules, they dont break or bend any law. They dont have to as they can modify rules to suit their actions. TS Eliot foresaw the situation and with poetic insight gave voice to the situation,prophetically . Well done TS !

| Posted on 2012-04-26 | by a guest

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Macavity is based on professor James Moriarty from the Sherlock Holmes novels. Make of that what you will.

| Posted on 2011-10-29 | by a guest

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This poem just describes the laziness of the police. When they can\'t solve a crime, they put the blame on a random criminal. When a person is accused of a crime, they try to convict him of as many unsolved crimes as they can, so that their burden is lessened. In this poem, TS Eliot has exaggerated this habit of the police by showing that they have accused a cat of the crimes which they could not solve.

| Posted on 2011-03-23 | by a guest

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woow you guys are all dumb like alot ...
this poem has nothing to do with the stupidity of police. the cat macavity is the poet saying that hes an Unordinary,and or \"unique\" poet
\"He\'s broken every human law, he breaks the law of gravity.
His powers of levitation would make a fakir stare\"
implies that the poem has no internal rhyming, x
thers more evidence but i have to go lol:)

| Posted on 2011-03-14 | by a guest

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ilike this poem its really good i am doing
a project in my school about mecavitiy and me and my ffriend rebecca r doing a dance rutien for
the mecavity song l love it so
much its really good. by shalom girma
a student from chace

| Posted on 2011-03-01 | by a guest

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I think that this is a very mestirious poem and it has a couple of alliteration in, but its not about macavity stealing the plans and doing crimes but its about the police trying to capture macavity,and in this poem the writer is trying to make fun of the police and i think thats the only part where it has a bit of stupidity in it, and people laugh at the police, not macavity. And the police is so stupid that they cant catch a little cat.

| Posted on 2011-01-02 | by a guest

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this is a very nice and humorous poem.the poet has given sumhow human feelings to this poem ....nd has made all the readers laugh !!!

| Posted on 2010-12-28 | by a guest

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This poem by T.S.Eliot is very well written.It is about a mystery cat called Macavity.In this poem the poet describes the cat and the mischeif it does by giving many humourous examples....

| Posted on 2010-12-13 | by a guest

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In my opionion Macavity was not a skinny cat he was fat and also I had a cat named macavit so IDk I like this poem cause ithink I like th author

| Posted on 2010-12-10 | by a guest

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The poem is a humorous criticism of the failure of modern criminal justice systems. A cat may break any law and humans would be legally powerless. It also alludes to humans inherent nature to be sinful and commit crimes since cats are compared to humans more so than most other domesticated creatures. The crimes range form the infantile desire to fly, the childish crime of breaking glass, to stealing precious jewels and valuable documents. It also provides the reader with simple levity as it alludes to a cat's tendency to "vanish" whenever it has done something wrong.

| Posted on 2010-05-28 | by a guest

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Macavity is very closely related to Adam Worth, a criminal gived the name "Napoleon of Crime". Just as the Scotland Yard was searching for Macavity, the Scotalnd Yard was searching for Adam Worth.

| Posted on 2010-05-23 | by a guest

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TS Eliott makes macavity seem like a crook and gangster. when they find the crime scene he is not there. He uses anthropamorphism which is when you give an animal human qualities to give you a scence of Macavity really being a human.

| Posted on 2009-11-04 | by a guest

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