Updated Jan 4, 2023, 8:58am EST
North America

The Library of Congress has released a new free-to-use photo of a cat dressed as Brünnhilde – and fans are ecstatic


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Washington’s Library of Congress announced that a new photograph of a cat dressed as the German heroine Brünnhilde, from Richard Wagner’s opera Der Ring des Niebelungen, has been made public and free to download.

The Library of Congress
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The new 12 by 9 centimeter sepia-toned print from 1936 depicts a cat looking slightly off camera, dressed in a winged helmet and sequenced breastplate armor.

It is the second photo the Library of Congress has digitized of Brünnhilde — the first was a black and white portrait of the feline pictured from the side.

“One of the most beloved free-to-use photos in the Library’s collection is of Brünnhilde,” the Library tweeted, with the two prints attached. “We’re happy to report that 2023 comes with a freshly digitized photograph of Brünnhilde from another angle.”

The Library’s website features a “free to use and reuse” section, containing millions of digitized items including photographs, maps, and films. Brünnhilde’s prints were featured under categories like “animals in human situations,” “costumes,” and “humorous pictures”.

The pictures of the cat drew more than 18,000 likes, just four hours after the Library tweeted the news.

“A queen,” one user wrote, in a retweet of the photo. “This is the energy I need for 2023,” said another.