How long have LOLcats been around?

Earlier today HuffPost UK News declared that the world's favourite internet meme had been around since at least the 19th century.

We can do better.

Recently no less than the historiographical masters at the British Library said they had found the ancient origins of LOLcats in a bunch of medieval manuscripts.

"As it is today, the enmity between the cat and the mouse was well-established in the medieval imagination," the British Library said in a blog post.

It goes on to describe how cats were often used to illustrate stories, with Tom and Jerry-style battles with mice often on the pre-renaissance agenda.

Take a look at our favourite medieval LOLcats below - and please, no one send us in any pictures of Egyptian wall paintings or stone age Cave Art. We get it - Lolcatz Is For Everz.

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  • Medieval LolCats

    Cats catching mice, mice stealing eucharistic wafers and "an ancestor of Keyboard Cat" from a bestiary dating from the 2nd quarter of the 13th century.

  • Medieval Keyboard Cat

    Close up of medieval keyboard cat.

  • Medieval LolCats

    Detail of a miniature of mice laying siege to a castle defended by a cat; from a Book of Hours, England (London), c. 1320-c. 1330.

  • Medieval LolCats

    Detail of an historiated initial 'O' of a dog catching a cat catching mice; from Gregory the Great (12th century).

  • Medieval LolCats

    Detail of a miniature of a nun spinning thread, as her pet cat plays with the spindle (14th century).

  • Medieval LolCats

    Detail of a miniature of Alexander exploring the ocean in a glass barrel, accompanied by a cat and a cock (French, 1420).