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john65pennington's avatar

Why were monkeys chosen as the organ-grinders animal of choice?

Asked by john65pennington (29202points) January 9th, 2011

Organ-grinders, of the 19th and 20th centuries, would stand on a street corner and beg for money by playing an organ and featuring a monkey, to help collect the coins. Question: why was the monkey chosen by the organ-grinders to use, instead of some other animal, like a dog or cat, for example? Also, wasn’t the organ-grinder just another early form of a homeless person?

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8 Answers

chyna's avatar

They have opposable thumbs. Dogs don’t.

WhenAllLightDies's avatar

Well, they were going to use elephants… Then they realised the impracticality of such a thing.

john65pennington's avatar

WhenAllLightDies, you made me laugh. thanks. john

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auntydeb's avatar

They look like us, so like little tiny humans, dressed up all cute. Humour, power, control… all in one!

Earthgirl's avatar

Monkeys could be trained to do tricks and also used to collect the money

downtide's avatar

Monkeys can be trained to do tricks. Like picking people’s pockets.

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