Thursday, April 27, 2023

W is for Wax (Body Folktales)

This year, my A to Z Challenge theme is Body Folktales. Enjoy! 

In case you ever wondered: yes, there are stories about ear wax.

Why mosquitoes buzz in people's ears (Gabon)

Ear and Mosquito go bathing together, and ear begins to treat his skin with oil (wax) after. Mosquito ask for oil and Ear promises to lend some, but never fulfills his promise. He just puts the rest of the oil back inside the ear and walks away. Ever since then, mosquitoes have been buzzing in people's ears, asking for the promised wax.

Why mosquitoes buzz (Garifuna people, Saint Vincent)

Wax and Mosquito are friends. Wax goes bankrupt, and borrows some money from Mosquito, but never pays it back. Eventually, trying to avoid his creditor, Wax hides in a human's ear, and has been hiding ever since. Mosquito, on his part, has been angrily buzzing, demanding payment.

Madhu and Kaitabha (India)

In Hindu mythology Madhu and Kaitabha are two beings born from the ear wax of the god Vishnu. One of them is soft and one of them is hard. They gain the power to only die with their own consent, from the goddess Mahadevi, and use it to challenge the gods to a fight. Eventually, Vishnu defeats them with deception.

Next time you hear a mosquito, I hope these stories will come to mind...


  1. Jamie (
    Ear wax. Interesting topic.

  2. Not one but two tales connecting mosquitos and earwax. Who'd'a thought?

  3. I wish they'd just given mosquito the wax! I have too much these days anyway.

  4. Oh, these are pure delight. Not that I am going to let the skitter into the ear for payment of the wax it was promised. (

  5. Ha! I would never have guessed that there would be folktales featuring ear wax.