Miranda was a cat of many accomplishments: she was a good mother; she could sing; she had once chased sixteen dogs, causing them to flee in disgrace. Long ago, she and her daughter Punka lived in Rome in a beautiful villa with a senator and his family. But when the city was invaded by barbarians, the family fled to safety--without the cats. Left behind in the burning city, Miranda made her way through crowded streets with Punka, collecting motherless kittens as she went. At last she arrived at the vast Colosseum, where she established a haven. There it was, assisted by the valient Punka, that she preserved the lives of a multitude of kittens and cats--who were to become the noble ancestors of the cats of modern Rome.