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Japanese Fairy Tales
215 pp.
ebook EPUB
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Japanese Fairy Tales ebook: EPUB met Adobe-DRM

Reeks: Classic Short Story Collections: Fantasy

This collection of Japanese fairy tales is the outcome of a suggestion made to me indirectly through a friend by Mr. Andrew Lang. They have been translated from the modern version written by Sadanami Sanjin. These stories are not literal translations, and though the Japanese story and all quaint Japanese expressions have been faithfully preserved, they have been told more with the view to interest young readers of the West than the technical student of folk-lore....In telling these stories in English I havefollowed my fancy in adding such touches of local color ordescription as they seemed to need or as pleased me, and in one ortwo instances I have gathered in an incident from another version. Atall times, among my friends, both young and old, English or American,I have always found eager listeners to the beautiful legends andfairy tales of Japan, and in telling them I have also found that theywere still unknown to the vast majority, and this has encouraged meto write them for the children of the West.Y. T. O.Tokio, 1908.MYLORD BAG OF RICE (Excerpt)Long, long ago there lived, in Japan a bravewarrior known to all as Tawara Toda, or "e;My Lord Bag of Rice."e;His true name was Fujiwara Hidesato, and there is a very interestingstory of how he came to change his name.One day he sallied forth in search of adventures,for he had the nature of a warrior and could not bear to be idle. Sohe buckled on his two swords, took his huge bow, much taller thanhimself, in his hand, and slinging his quiver on his back startedout. He had not gone far when he came to the bridge ofSeta-no-Karashi spanning one end of the beautiful Lake Biwa. Nosooner had he set foot on the bridge than he saw lying right acrosshis path a huge serpent-dragon. Its body was so big that it lookedlike the trunk of a large pine tree and it took up the whole width ofthe bridge. One of its huge claws rested on the parapet of one sideof the bridge, while its tail lay right against the other. Themonster seemed to be asleep, and as it breathed, fire and smoke cameout of its nostrils.At first Hidesato could not help feeling alarmedat the sight of this horrible reptile lying in his path, for he musteither turn back or walk right over its body. He was a brave man,however, and putting aside all fear went forward dauntlessly. Crunch,crunch! he stepped now on the dragon's body, now between its coils,and without even one glance backward he went on his way.He had only gone a few steps when he heard someone calling him from behind. On turning back he was much surprised tosee that the monster dragon had entirely disappeared and in its placewas a strange-looking man, who was bowing most ceremoniously to theground. His red hair streamed over his shoulders and was surmountedby a crown in the shape of a dragon's head, and his sea-green dresswas patterned with shells. Hidesato knew at once that this was noordinary mortal and he wondered much at the strange occurrence. Wherehad the dragon gone in such a short space of time? Or had ittransformed itself into this man, and what did the whole thing mean?While these thoughts passed through his mind he had come up to theman on the bridge and now addressed him:"e;Was it you that called me just now?"e;"e;Yes, it was I,"e; answered the man: "e;Ihave an earnest request to make to you. Do you think you can grant itto me?"e;"e;If it is in my power to do so I will,"e;answered Hidesato, "e;but first tell me who you are?"e;"e;I am the Dragon King of the Lake, and myhome is in these waters just under this bridge."e;"e;And what is it you have to ask of me!"e;said Hidesato."e;I want you to kill my mortal enemy thecentipede, who lives on the mountain beyond,"e; and the DragonKing pointed to a high peak on the opposite shore of the lake...Yei Theodora Ozaki (Eiko Seodora Ozaki, 1871 - December 28, 1932) was an early 20th-century translator of Japanese short stories and fairy tales. Her translations were fairly liberal but have been popular, and were reprinted several times after her death.According to "e;A Biographical Sketch"e; by Mrs. Hugh Fraser, included in the introductory material to Warriors of old Japan, and other stories,Ozaki came from an unusual background. She was the daughter of Baron Ozaki, one of the first Japanese men to study in the West, and Bathia Catherine Morrison, daughter of William Morrison, one of their teachers.Her parents separated after five years of marriage, and her mother retained custody of their three daughters until they became teenagers. At that time, Yei was sent to live in Japan with her father, which she enjoyed. Later she refused an arranged marriage, left her father's house, and became a teacher and secretary to earn money. Over the years,she traveled back and forth between Japan and Europe, as her employmentand family duties took her, and lived in places as diverse as Italy andthe drafty upper floor of a Buddhist temple.All this time, her letters were frequently misdelivered to the unrelated Japanese politician Yukio Ozaki, and his to her. In 1904, they finally met, and soon married.

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