‘There’s an elephant in the room’ means there’s a topic about which everyone present knows and is probably longing to discuss but no-one dares to raise the subject.
There are three elephants in my house – not live ones, of course. My house is far too small to accommodate pachyderms though I understand that pachydermata is an outdated term. Elephants are now classified as Loxodonta or African Elephants or Elephas maximus, the Asian Elephant. I still like pachyderm!
If you have an elephant in your house you must make sure it faces east or a window or a door otherwise bad luck will ensue. How do these superstitions arise, I wonder?
Ornamental elephants are believed to bring good luck, particularly if their trunks are raised. Wooden elephants are thought to be the luckiest and it’s good to have them in groups of nine and placed in an ‘area of wealth’ in your home, whatever that means or wherever it is. (My greatest wealth lies in my children – ‘kindergeld’ as one German gentleman told me when I was living in Germany with three small children, though I gather kindergeld means something rather different – a form of child allowance, I believe.)
Of my elephants, two are African and one is Asian. The two Loxodonta (showing off again!!) both have their trunks raised but the Asian elephant is wooden. I think I’m receiving a lot of luck but it seems that I must acquire six more really to feel Fortune smiling on me *wink*