The merlion is a statue with the head of a lion and the body of a fish. Its name comes from a portmanteau of mermaid and lion. The merlion was designed by Fraser Brunner for the Singapore Tourism Board in 1964 and was used as its logo up to 1997. The Merlion continues to be its trademark symbol. It also appears frequently in STB-approved souvenirs.
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The lion head and fish body of the creature recalls the story of the legendary Sang Nila Utama, who saw a lion while hunting on an island, en route to Malacca. The island eventually became the sea port of Temasek, a precursor to Singapore.
The Merlion statue measures 8.6 metres high and weighs 70 tonnes. It was built by the late Singapore craftsman, Mr Lim Nang Seng.