What is the original Japanese saying meaning, "It's always the darkest under the lighthouse"? (reference)

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    Note that lighthouse is not an appropriate translation for 灯台 here.
    – Dono
    Jun 12, 2012 at 14:12
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    You omitted the most important part of the question from the title! Please include the sentence itself in the title. Jun 12, 2012 at 14:17
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    @missingfaktor 灯台 in this case refers a type of old-style room lighting that is made of wood and resembles a candlestick. They were primarily in use from Heian through Edo period. You place a rod in the stand, dampen it with oils, and let it burn. Depending on the design, there are several prominent types: 菊灯台, 切灯台, 糞層灯台, 長檠, and 短檠.
    – Dono
    Jun 12, 2012 at 14:43
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    @missingfaktor: Unfortunately, the tag [typo] has been used to refer to something different from typos, despite its name. Please see the meta post which I linked to in my previous comment. If you have a suggestion for a better name, please post it in the meta thread! Jun 12, 2012 at 14:54
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    @Dono: Can you post it as an answer? Although it does not answer the original question being asked, I think that it deserves to be an answer because it explains an important supplemental information about the answer. Jun 12, 2012 at 14:58

1 Answer 1


It's probably 灯{とう}台{だい}下{もと}暗{くら}し, meaning we tend to overlook what is right under our nose.



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