Saturday, July 26, 2003
D I D  Y O U  K N O W . . .

The names of the three wise monkeys?

THE names of the three wise monkeys are: Mizaru (see no evil), Mikazaru (hear no evil), and Mazaru (say no evil). These popular monkeys appear in a wooden carving from the seventeenth century at Toshogu shrine in Nikko, Japan. The shrine is the mausoleum (a special building made to hold the body of an important person after his death or the bodies of a family) of Tokugawa Ieyasu, a Japanese military leader. The three monkeys were the guardians of the stables in the shrine. In Japanese, the words mizaru, kikazaru, iwazaru stand for "see nothing, hear nothing and say nothing". The word for monkey (saru or zaru) sounds the same as the verb-ending zaru, so the phrase representing the three monkeys is a play on words.

  • The word "queue" is the only word in the English language that is still pronounced the same way when the last four letters are removed.

  • Did you know that India invented the number system and that Aryabhatta invented zero?

Compiled by Gaurav Sood