Even monkeys fall from trees, especially this one!

サルスベリ 猿も木から落ちる 滑る

Use the rikaichan popup dictionary if you need help reading the words transcribed above.  They include a tree’s name,  a proverb, and a verb.

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Your studious friend has just failed an exam, a first.  You console her by saying 猿も木から落ちる!Even monkeys fall from trees.  Nobody’s perfect.  I was reminded of this common expression when I went to Kyoto’s Botanical Garden and saw a サルスベリ tree.

I can never resist touching these trees,  but their smoothness must make it hard for even monkeys to keep their grip!  Hence the whimsical name, which combines the words for ‘monkey’ and ‘slide’.  These are known as Crape Myrtle in English.

さるもきからおちる! Is one of the most often heard  Japanese proverbs that use animal imagery.  What others come to your mind?

Originally posted 2012-08-01 14:12:18.

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