The Merlion Statue is a symbol of the State of Singapore. This statue is usually a mandatory photo spot for tourists who travel to this country.The Merlion statue is in the shape of a lion’s head with a fish-like body standing above the waves.This statue was constructed specifically for the purpose of welcoming tourists who come to Singapore.
Initially, the Merlion Statue was designed by Fraser Brunner, an ichthyology expert (fish science expert) from England, for the Singapore Tourism Board in 1963. Then the statue officially became the icon of the Singapore Tourism Board in 1964. Subsequently, the statue has been the symbol of Singapore since 1997. The Merlion statue was built by Singaporean artist Lim Nang Seng in 1964, whereas the country gained its independence in 1965.In other words, the Merlion Statue is actually a year older than Singapore. Interesting, isn’t it?
Apparently, there is a long history behind the Merlion Statue that you may not know. The lion’s head on the Merlion Statue symbolizes the lion figure that was once met by the Founder of Singapore, Sang Nila Utama. The Nila Utama met the figure of the lion while hunting on an island on his way to Malacca. The island is known as the port of Temasek. This story is also written in Malay History.
The fish section of the Merlion statue symbolizes the ancient city of Temasek. Temasek was the known name of Singapore before Prince Sang Nila Utama changed it to “Singapore”, which in Sanskrit means the City of Lions. Singapore was once known as a fishing village.
The other side of the Merlion Statue also holds some profound meanings. The teeth contained on the Merlion Statue are not just displays. The teeth on the Merlion Statue holds an important representation, specifically, one Merlion tooth stands for one ethnic group in Singapore.
A more surprising fact is that there are more than one Merlion Statue in Singapore. There are several replicas of Merlion statue scattered in some parts of Singapore. You can see other Merlion Statues on Sentosa Island, Mount Faber, and Tourism Court at Orchard Spring Lane.
It’s probably common knowledge that the Merlion Statue is located in the Merlion Park, 120 meters from the Singapore River. But, the Merlion Statue was initially located on the Singapore River opposite Elizabeth Walk until it was relocated to its current location today.
Have you taken a photo with the Merlion Statue?