Cat Name Inspiration: Literature, Film & TV Edition

Mar 14, 2024

Cat Name Inspiration: Literature, Film & TV Edition

Have you made the exciting decision to welcome a feline friend into your family? Perhaps you have chosen your kitten and are waiting to bring them home, or maybe you are adopting an older cat and want to rename them. Whatever the circumstances, the process of naming your new family member can begin! 

We are continuing our ‘cat names’ series with our top picks from literature, film, and TV. Some are characters, some are famous authors' cats, and some are taking inspiration from TV series or author’s names. 

At Cheshire & Wain, personalisation is at the forefront of what we do, and over the years, we have been collecting valuable cat name ideas for this exact moment. A lot of the names in this list are Cheshire & Wain cats!

Here are our top picks and some background on where they came from. 


Foss (or Aderphos), was the pet cat of Edward Lear, the 19th-century author, artist, illustrator and poet. Foss has been described as an ‘unattractive’, ‘portly’ and ‘stumpy-tailed’ tabby cat. 

Lear famously wrote the poem The Owl and the Pussycat, and Foss is undoubtedly the inspiration for this beloved kitty character. Foss lived to the great age of seventeen, Lear survived him by only a few months! 

Edward Lear Aged 73 and a Half and His Cat Foss, Aged 16 From a letter addressed to Mr. Underhill, the artist

Pangur Bán

Pangur Bán is a famous poem written by an Irish monk in the 9th century. It is a delightful poem about the relationship between the monk and his cat, Pangur Bán, in the context of monastic life. The poem is renowned for its simplicity, yet profound reflections on companionship, solitary pursuit of knowledge, and the shared joy in small pleasures.


Hodge was the name of the Samuel Johnson’s cat. Samuel Johnson or Dr. Johnson (1709–1784) is regarded as one the greatest literary figures of the 18th century.

"I never shall forget the indulgence with which he treated Hodge, his cat: for whom he himself used to go out and buy oysters, lest the servants having that trouble should take a dislike to the poor creature.” 

The Life of Samuel Johnson, James Boswell (1791)

Cat (Breakfast at Tiffany’s) 

In the iconic Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn) has a cat named Cat. 

Cat serves as a constant presence in Holly's life, providing her with a sense of responsibility and companionship despite her often erratic behaviour. Holly's attachment to Cat adds depth to her character and reflects her desire for love and stability amid her turbulent life.

The relationship between Holly and Cat is one of the central elements of the story, showcasing the complexity of human emotions and the bonds that can form between individuals and their animal companions. 


Cheshire Cat (Alice in Wonderland)

The Cheshire Cat is one of the most memorable and iconic characters in Lewis Carroll’s Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and our namesake! The Cheshire Cat is described as a large, pink and purple striped cat who speaks in riddles, with a wide grin that extends from ear to ear.

Cheshire Cat

Jiji (Kiki’s Delivery Service)

Jiji is the name of the talking black cat from the Studio Ghibli film Kiki's Delivery Service. He is Kiki’s constant and witty companion as 13-year-old Kiki tries to make it as an independent witch. 

Jiji, Kiki's Delivery Service

Maurice (The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents) 

This Terry Pratchett fantasy children’s novel is a take on the fairytale The Pied Piper of Hamelin, and parodies the folk genre. Maurice is the intelligent cat who leads a group of rats on a series of scams. 

Hobbes (Calvin and Hobbes)

Calvin and Hobbes is a beloved comic strip created by cartoonist Bill Watterson. It followed the adventures of a precocious six-year-old boy named Calvin and his stuffed tiger named Hobbes. Hobbes comes to life in Calvin's imagination but appears as an inanimate stuffed animal to everyone else. Hobbes serves as Calvin's best friend, confidant, and voice of reason. He is often the more level-headed and mature of the two, balancing out Calvin's impulsiveness and wild ideas.

Calvin & Hobbes

Mog (Mog the Forgetful Cat)

The beloved Mog from the childhood stories by Judith Kerr remains a firm favourite. Lovingly transformed into a Christmas animation last year, Mog is standing the test of time. 

Behemoth (The Master and Margarita)

The Master and Margarita (1967) is a novel by Russian author Mikhail Bulgakov. 

Behemoth is one of the central characters who is a huge, demonic black cat with a penchant for sarcasm and mischief. 

Despite his demonic nature, Behemoth is depicted as a charming and witty character, often providing comic relief in the midst of the novel's dark and surreal events. He delights in playing pranks on humans and revels in the chaos he helps to create.


TS Eliot’s Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats

Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats is a collection of whimsical poems by the renowned British author T.S. Eliot. Originally published in 1939, the book is comprised of playful verses about various cats and their peculiarities.

Andrew Lloyd Weber’s hit musical Cats (1981) is adapted from this and became one of the longest running shows in Broadway history. The 2019 film adaptation proved to be a little less popular! 

There are many names to choose from such as: Macavity, Gus, The Rum Rum Tugger, Shimbleshanks and Old Deutoronomy. 

TS Eliot cats

Some literary/film inspired names from our database:

Simpkin - The Tailor of Gloucester, Beatrix Potter

Moppet & Mittens - from The Tale of Tom Kitten, Beatrix Potter

Villanelle - from Killing Eve

Margaret Attwood - author of The Handmaid’s Tale

Moomin - from Tove Jansson’s The Moomins

Nala & Simba - The Lion King

Berlioz, Marie, Toulouse - The Aristocats

Galadriel - The powerful female elf from JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings

Tolstoy - Leo Tolstoy, the Russian author who wrote War and Peace and Anna Karenina 

Mr Darcy - from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice

Paddington - the marmalade-loving bear!

Crookshanks - Hermione’s ginger cat from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban