This year produced more than its share of memorable quotes, many of which were inspired by the March 11 disaster and its aftermath. But figures from other fields, from sports to entertainment, also said things worth repeating. Here is a sampling, in chronological order:

"Professional sumo is not a show or an entertainment, but is rather something for everyone to watch, wringing their hands over a hard-fought bout. I feel as though I'm viewing scenery I really don't want to see," commented Justice Minister Satsuki Eda on Feb. 4 in response to a sumo bout-fixing scandal.

The same-day reaction of Tokyo Gov. Shintaro Ishihara was more succinct and skeptical: "That's what sumo is. It's been that way from a long time back."