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Old 11.01.2009, 12:06
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Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

I was going through this article ( http://www.how-to.com/Operations/angel-investor.htm ) and came across this :


In 1471, in Basel, Switzerland, a chicken laid a brightly colored egg and was put on trial for being "a devil in disguise." After being found guilty, the chicken was burned at the stake.


Searching for other sources brought me to a Swiss source - this place:

http://ingwer.ch/geo/ilg.html from which I list a few interesting statements:




In Switzerland, there was once against the law to slam your car door.


In Switzerland, it is illegal to mow your front lawn while you're dressed as Elvis. ( also on http://www.leftlion.co.uk/articles.cfm/id/22 )


Every Swiss citizen is required by law to have their own bomb shelter or access to a bomb shelter.
( True, if you don't have your own in your house, the community will provide it. this law was introduced during the cold war when atomic attacks were more feared than these days. it is not compulsory anymore to have one in your house if you build a new house. however the communities still provide one. )


As a landlocked country, Switzerland perform extremely well in yachting events, including the America's Cup! ( True, the "alinghi" team twice won that cup )




The Swiss flag – although being square (like the Vatican) – when being used on the ocean by a ship – needs to be rectangular.




There are well over 40 shipwrecks in Lac Leman (Lake Geneva), including 6 railway cars from the mid to late 1800's (see http://www.sub-rec.ch/Eindex.html) – GREAT CACHES!!!!!!


Businesses in European countries commonly use handwriting analysis in their employment practices. In France and Switzerland, approximately 80 percent of the large corporations use graphology in their hiring procedures.
( the percentage is probably too high, but graphology is used sometimes, especially for leading/managing employees. )




Switzerland has the highest percentage (0.01%) of people over the age of 100 in Europe. Only the Japanese do better. There were 798 Swiss centenarians in 2000, 677 of whom were women, for a population of 7.2 million.
( There are twins turning 202 years in Feb. 2008 with each of the two ladies "only" 101, of course ).




Switzerland has the most hospital beds per 1000 people.
( 5.8 beds per 1000 people while the average in Europe is 4.6 ).




The last legal execution of a witch was in 1782 in Switzerland.




There are palm trees in Switzerland. They are in the Ticino region which is known as the Tropical Alps Region.




The 1993 world-record tallest snowman was built by 8 residents of Saas-Fee, Switzerland. After 21 days of building, their snowman was 30 m (90' 1") tall.




An independent researcher has presented conclusive evidence that US astronaut John Glenn was wearing a Heuer stopwatch when he piloted the Mercury-Atlas 6 "Friendship 7" spacecraft on the first manned U.S. orbital mission. This means that Heuer now named TAG Heuer was the first Swiss watchmaker in space! Prior to Glenn’s historic flight, the only watch to pass beyond the stratosphere was the Russian-made chronograph that Yuri Gagarin wore when he orbited the earth in 1961.




Switzerland has also provided for defense of the lives of its civilian population against nuclear terrorism. Realizing after World War Two that nuclear weapons in the hands of power-mad idiots posed a public health threat, the Swiss started a nationwide shelter-building program in 1960. By 1991, there was enough shelter space in Switzerland to protect everyone in their home or apartment, and also enough at their workplace and school. A Swiss citizen is generally never more than a few minutes from a fallout shelter with an air filter.




Lederhosen were invented by the Swiss. The invention came about during one multi-national winter competition that involved Switzerland, Austria, Germany, and Italy. All of the participants from the other countries came dressed bundled up and ready for competition in extremely cold weather. The Swiss however arrived wearing only a thin shirt and the lederhosen to show the rest that they were the real men. Not wanting to appear to be sissies, the rest of the competitors quickly adopted the fashion that still exists to this day. However, competition involving lederhosen these days seems to be centered more around warmer weather and drinking beer.




Switzerland has remained a neutral country for a long time and has not been at war since 1815. Considering the nature of man this is an incredible feat and historians have long sought the answer as to how a single country could remain untouched by the world for so long. It turns out the Swiss had a unique solution. In 1814 an assessment was made of all the people of the country who were inclined to go to war. Switzerland then invented the country of Liechtenstein to house all of the aggressive people. This has kept Switzerland at peace for nearly 200 years and Liechtenstein, being so small, has not been able to cause any trouble in all that time too. Every year assessments are made of the Swiss population and as a result there are several immigrations from Switzerland to Liechtenstein. No one has ever immigrated from Liechtenstein to Switzerland.




The Swiss invented the cuckoo clock in 56,000BC. These timepieces are often hand-carved with various leaf patterns in a Black Forest sort of style, and instead of having a chime like a normal clock have a little wooden bird (which rarely looks even remotely like a cuckoo, but then not many people know what a cuckoo looks like. This includes cuckoos themselves, which is probably why you hardly ever see them – when a potential daddy cuckoo and a potential mummy cuckoo meet, they don't realise what each other are and so cannot mate. Hence there aren't many of them) that pops out of a tiny door and cuckoos. Exactly how these work is a mystery, since normal wild cuckoos are not known for their good time keeping. Presumably Swiss cuckoos are equipped with Swiss watches (or more likely Japanese ones, since the Japanese can make watches that cost a few pounds that are more accurate than any Swiss watch). As you can imagine, the overall effect is somewhat tacky and twee. Clockologists believe that the cuckoo clock was inspired by the rare clock cuckoo, which is known to have existed in the Black Forest until about 1600 (this magnificent bird is now extinct in Europe except for a small colony in Portugal). The male clock cuckoo builds an elaborate clocklike nest in an attempt to attract a mate, who will lay her eggs inside the nest after mating. Both sexes in the pair feed the young until they leave the nest via the little door thoughtfully constructed by the male parent.
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Old 11.01.2009, 14:11
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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There are palm trees in Switzerland. They are in the Ticino region which is known as the Tropical Alps Region.
There are palm trees that live happily in Montreux.
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Old 11.01.2009, 14:25
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

"Every Swiss citizen is required by law to have their own bomb shelter or access to a bomb shelter."

Most people nowadays don't build bomb shelters. However, they make great cellars!
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Old 11.01.2009, 14:27
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

"No one has ever immigrated from Liechtenstein to Switzerland."

Ummm.... my sister-in-law is from Triesenberg and has been living in Switzerland for over 25 years. And she's not the only one.
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Old 11.01.2009, 15:09
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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"No one has ever immigrated from Liechtenstein to Switzerland."

Ummm.... my sister-in-law is from Triesenberg and has been living in Switzerland for over 25 years. And she's not the only one.
I wonder if it was a joke?
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Old 11.01.2009, 15:37
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

With regards to the last Americas cup yaghting race, I prefered to refer to the racing teams in the final as New Zealand 1 (Alingi) & New Zealand 2 (Team New Zealand)...
I was corrected by my boss who said that that particular year 15 countries could be happy about having won the Americas cup, as 15 countries were represented on board...
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Old 11.01.2009, 15:43
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

The author ( http://ingwer.ch/geo/ilg.html ) did quote this link though:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/America...ins_by_country

and interestingly that:
Switzerland is home to the world's largest manufacturer of marine engines despite being a landlocked nation
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Old 11.01.2009, 15:57
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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In Switzerland, it is illegal to mow your front lawn while you're dressed as Elvis. ( also on http://www.leftlion.co.uk/articles.cfm/id/22 )
Does that mean that it is legal to mow your lawn dressed as any other star that you choose?



Switzerland has around 6% of all the freshwater in Europe. (That could give it great bargaining power if climate change really takes hold).

The bottom of Lakes Lugano and Maggiore are below sea level.
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Old 11.01.2009, 16:04
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

I doubt either Lederhosen or Cuckoo clocks were in vented in Switzerland. They are both Bavarian...
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Old 11.01.2009, 20:10
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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Every Swiss citizen is required by law to have their own bomb shelter or access to a bomb shelter.
( True, if you don't have your own in your house, the community will provide it. this law was introduced during the cold war when atomic attacks were more feared than these days. it is not compulsory anymore to have one in your house if you build a new house. however the communities still provide one. )
I have visited one of these in early 1990s. Very impressive!

And, I read an interesting article from Swissair inflight magazine (Jan,2009 issue)

This is the opening paragraphes of it.

From the declaration of Independence and the Liberty Bell to the Civil War battlefields of Gettysburg,
Pennsylvania is well known as a bastion of United States history.


Lesser known is that it's also home to a significant slice of living, breathing Swiss history.
It is here, among the lush green farmlands, that some 47,000 people continue to live
almost exactly as their ancestors in Switzerland did over 200 years ago.


Many of us have heard of them - the Amish - but who are they exactly,
and how did they wind up in Pennsylvania?
Ethnically, the Amish are among the most genetically pure Swiss Germans in the world.
Their native tongue is a low-German dialect, and they use high German in church and school.

- I did not know this!
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Old 11.01.2009, 20:12
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

Here's more on the Amish people:


Wikipedia reference-linkAmish
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Old 11.01.2009, 20:17
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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I have visited one of these in early 1990s. Very impressive!

And, I read an interesting article from Swissair inflight magazine (Jan,2009 issue)

This is the opening paragraphes of it.

From the declaration of Independence and the Liberty Bell to the Civil War battlefields of Gettysburg,
Pennsylvania is well known as a bastion of United States history.


Lesser known is that it's also home to a significant slice of living, breathing Swiss history.
It is here, among the lush green farmlands, that some 47,000 people continue to live
almost exactly as their ancestors in Switzerland did over 200 years ago.


Many of us have heard of them - the Amish - but who are they exactly,
and how did they wind up in Pennsylvania?
Ethnically, the Amish are among the most genetically pure Swiss Germans in the world.
Their native tongue is a low-German dialect, and they use high German in church and school.

- I did not know this!
I read this as well. I found it quite enlightening. I didn't know anything of their history.
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Old 11.01.2009, 21:06
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

I don't know what's funny about a compilation of facts, half-truths and nonsense. I considered going through the list one by one but don't want to be a killjoy. I just think that an expat forum should aim higher...
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Old 11.01.2009, 21:14
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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I don't know what's funny about a compilation of facts, half-truths and nonsense. I considered going through the list one by one but don't want to be a killjoy. I just think that an expat forum should aim higher...
Hi Nathu,
I hesitated whether to groan or comment .... I chose to comment.
The thread is harmless and amusing to some people it seems. Certainly worth a few memory bites on the server ...
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Old 11.01.2009, 21:18
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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I don't know what's funny about a compilation of facts, half-truths and nonsense.
I agree. Who'd find that kind of thing funny?
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Old 11.01.2009, 21:29
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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I doubt either Lederhosen or Cuckoo clocks were in vented in Switzerland. They are both Bavarian...
I tought cuckoo clocks are from the black forest
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Old 11.01.2009, 21:31
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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Does that mean that it is legal to mow your lawn dressed as any other star that you choose?



Switzerland has around 6% of all the freshwater in Europe. (That could give it great bargaining power if climate change really takes hold).

The bottom of Lakes Lugano and Maggiore are below sea level.
with the climate change gose the fresh water in CH
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Old 12.01.2009, 00:15
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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I don't know what's funny about a compilation of facts, half-truths and nonsense. I considered going through the list one by one but don't want to be a killjoy. I just think that an expat forum should aim higher...
At least the palm tree thing is true!
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Old 12.01.2009, 00:34
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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Switzerland has remained a neutral country for a long time and has not been at war since 1815. Considering the nature of man this is an incredible feat and historians have long sought the answer as to how a single country could remain untouched by the world for so long. It turns out the Swiss had a unique solution. In 1814 an assessment was made of all the people of the country who were inclined to go to war. Switzerland then invented the country of Liechtenstein to house all of the aggressive people. This has kept Switzerland at peace for nearly 200 years and Liechtenstein, being so small, has not been able to cause any trouble in all that time too. Every year assessments are made of the Swiss population and as a result there are several immigrations from Switzerland to Liechtenstein. No one has ever immigrated from Liechtenstein to Switzerland.
Fascinating! I wonder, with the Lichtenstein people being so inclined to go to war, whether there was any documented case of the Lichtenstein army "invading" a neighbouring country in recent times
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Old 12.01.2009, 03:19
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Re: Little known odd "facts" about Switzerland

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and interestingly that:
Switzerland is home to the world's largest manufacturer of marine engines despite being a landlocked nation
Not really....

If you are talking about what used to be Sulzer, they are now owned by a Finnish company "Wartsila". The part of the company that used to be Sulzer are mainly involved in the 2-stroke engine business and don't actually manufacture much in Winterthur anymore. They do however have several licensees all over the world and mainly in Asia. The 4-stroke business which was Wartsila's original business is indeed very strong but doesn't have too many links to Switzerland. "Ex-Sulzer's" main competitor in the 2-stroke business is MAN B&W who have a much larger market share and Mitsubushi Heavy.
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