In March 44 BCE, when treacherous Roman senators summoned their leader Julius Caesar to the Theatre of Pompey, a site in Rome’s Largo di Torre Argentina, they ambushed and stabbed him to death. The location of one of history’s most infamous betrayals is now a sanctuary for hundreds of disabled Roman cats.

The ruins, discovered in the 1920s, are home to over 200 felines. In the 1990s, strays, many of which escaped callous owners, took over the Torre Argentina and captivated the hearts of Italian cat enthusiasts.

These animals may have missing limbs and impaired eyesight, but they can still enjoy the basic things in life. These photos show the cats taking leisurely sunbathes, licking themselves, and generally looking down on anyone with a camera. The Torre Argentina Cat Sanctuary cares for these cats and welcomes volunteers and inquisitive observers to give the animals belly rubs and attention.

Humans with a compassion for vulnerable creatures are welcome to adopt the Roman cats, and while the adoption screening process is tough, don’t let that deter you from bringing home one of Rome’s best felines.


Observing The Photographer

Staring Into The Distance

Contemplating Life

Resting in the Ruins

A Collection Of Lounging Cats

Glancing Through The Leaves

Gathering For A Treat

Posing Casually

Blatantly Ignoring Everything

Prowling, In The Heart Of The Ruins

Self-Cleaning In A Pillar’s Shade

Unwinding Against The Backdrop Of The City

In The Grass, Feeling Content

Taking A Look Through the Weeds