St. Augustine, Florida: World's Oldest Rug - Zorayda Castle MuseumAnd the rug is made from cat hair. And it's cursed!
Villa Zorayda Museum
- 83 King St., St. Augustine, FL
- Villa Zorayda Museum, King St. between US Hwy 1 and Hwy 1A, across from Flagler College.
- M-Sa 10 am-5 pm (last tour 4:30 pm), Su 11 am - 4 pm. (Call to verify)
Visitor Tips and News About World's Oldest Rug - Zorayda Castle Museum
Villa Zorayda reopened fairly recently, and it is just as incredible as I had hoped! I'd read about the mummified princess' foot in THE NEW ROADSIDE AMERICA, so that was the first thing I inquired about. Sure enough, it's still there, as is the allegedly cursed cat-hair rug which contained said foot!
The other items on display are wonderful as well, ranging from antique art to memorabilia from the Villa's days as a speakeasy and restaurant. Unfortunately photos are not allowed. I live in Jacksonville and have made four trips to Villa Zorayda in the past year. Each visit was with different company, and every time they enjoyed it immensely (as did I!).[Prof. A, 01/17/2010]
Inside the Villa Zorayda Museum, the first cement building in St. Augustine, is the world's oldest rug. It is over 2,400 years old and depicts a large cat; it's also made from the fur of cats that wandered the Nile Valley in ancient Egypt, some of which could be four feet in length! The rug is supposedly cursed so that anyone who sets foot upon the sacred image will die, and so the museum wisely keeps it hanging on the wall.
The museum is beautiful, but no photographs are allowed.[Amy Y., 03/31/2009]
Cursed, did you say?