Japanese Legends and Folklore invites English speakers into the intriguing world of Japanese folktales, ghost stories and historical eyewitness accounts. With a fascinating selection of stories about Japanese culture and history, A.B. Mitford—who lived and worked in Japan as a British diplomat—presents a broad cross section of tales from many Japanese sources. Discover more about practically every aspect of Japanese life—from myths and legends to society and religion. This book features 30 fascinating Japanese stories, including: The Forty-Seven Ronin—the famous, epic tale of a loyal band of Samurai warriors who pay the ultimate price for avenging the honor of their fallen master. The Tongue-Cut Sparrow—a good-hearted old man is richly rewarded when he begs forgiveness from a sparrow who is injured by his spiteful, greedy wife. The Adventures of Little Peach Boy—a tale familiar to generations of Japanese children, a small boy born from a peach is adopted by a kindly childless couple. Japanese Sermons—a selection of sermons written by a priest belonging to the Shingaku sect, which combines Buddhist, Shinto and Confucian teachings. An Account of Hara-Kiri—Mitford's dramatic first person account of a ritual Samurai suicide, the first time it had been reported in English. Thirty-one reproductions of woodblock prints bring the classic tales and essays to life. These influential stories helped shape the West's understanding of Japanese culture. A new foreword by Professor Michael Dylan Foster sheds light on the book's importance as a groundbreaking work of Japanese folklore, literature and history.
The Daija. This mythological creature found in Japan is well unknown to Westerners. And yet! Its influence in Japanese culture and in the education of children is all the more important. Sometimes capable of metamorphosing into a beautiful young woman, sometimes looking like a huge monstrous creature, the Daija is feared and respected at the same time.With this book, discover the most influential Japanese stories about these unusual yokai. From the Daija that terrifies villagers to the one who decorates his lake with iris to please a human, don't miss the opportunity to discover a world hidden from the general public.A total of 200 unusual Japanese legends never compiled in France to understand how our own reality merges with the world of the yokai.
Through 130 short stories and testimonies, discover Japanese ghosts under a strange aspect: the fireball. This is called Hi no Tama, literally "ball of light/energy/fire".Sometimes simple fireballs, sometimes the spirit of a person looking for something, the Hi no Tama is a Yokai that is an integral part of Japanese culture.Through this book, you will understand all the complexity of minds in Japan. Why do they end up being malicious? What message do they want to deliver? Why do they display a red, bluish or orange color? So many mysteries to be solved thanks to these little tales and facts.
Pierre Loti in Madame Chrysanthème, Gilbert and Sullivan in The Mikado, and Sir Edwin Arnold in Seas and Lands, gave us the impression that Japan was a real fairyland in the Far East. We were delighted with the prettiness and quaintness of that country, and still more with the prettiness and quaintness of the Japanese people. We laughed at their topsy-turvy ways, regarded the Japanese woman, in her rich-coloured kimono, as altogether charming and fascinating, and had a vague notion that the principal features of Nippon were the tea-houses, cherry-blossom, and geisha. Twenty years ago we did not take Japan very seriously. We still listen to the melodious music of The Mikado, but now we no longer regard Japan as a sort of glorified willow-pattern plate. The Land of the Rising Sun has become the Land of the Risen Sun, for we have learnt that her quaintness and prettiness, her fairy-like manners and customs, were but the outer signs of a great and progressive nation. To-day we recognise Japan as a power in the East, and her victory over the Russian has made her army and navy famous throughout the world. The Japanese have always been an imitative nation, quick to absorb and utilise the religion, art, and social life of China, and, having set their own national seal upon what they have borrowed from the Celestial Kingdom, to look elsewhere for material that should strengthen and advance their position. This imitative quality is one of Japan's most marked characteristics. She has ever been loath to impart information to others, but ready at all times to gain access to any form of knowledge likely to make for her advancement. In the fourteenth century Kenkō wrote in his Tsure-dzure-gusa: "Nothing opens one's eyes so much as travel, no matter where," and the twentieth-century Japanese has put this excellent advice into practice. He has travelled far and wide, and has made good use of his varied observations. Japan's power of imitation amounts to genius. East and West have contributed to her greatness, and it is a matter of surprise to many of us that a country so long isolated and for so many years bound by feudalism should, within a comparatively short space of time, master our Western system of warfare, as well as many of our ethical and social ideas, and become a great world-power. But Japan's success has not been due entirely to clever imitation, neither has her place among the foremost nations been accomplished with such meteor-like rapidity as some would have us suppose.
Japan's mythology is alive with gods, spirits and monsters. The warrior class of the imperial court, and the natural spirits of the countryside represent parallel and interdependent aspects of Japanese society, explored through ancient legend and folklore in this fascinating new book in the Flame Tree Myths and Legend series.
Monsters, ghosts, fantastic beings, and supernatural phenomena of all sorts haunt the folklore and popular culture of Japan. Broadly labeled yokai, these creatures come in infinite shapes and sizes, from tengu mountain goblins and kappa water spirits to shape-shifting foxes and long-tongued ceiling-lickers. Currently popular in anime, manga, film, and computer games, many yokai originated in local legends, folktales, and regional ghost stories. Drawing on years of research in Japan, Michael Dylan Foster unpacks the history and cultural context of yokai, tracing their roots, interpreting their meanings, and introducing people who have hunted them through the ages. In this delightful and accessible narrative, readers will explore the roles played by these mysterious beings within Japanese culture and will also learn of their abundance and variety through detailed entries, some with original illustrations, on more than fifty individual creatures. The Book of Yokai provides a lively excursion into Japanese folklore and its ever-expanding influence on global popular culture. It also invites readers to examine how people create, transmit, and collect folklore, and how they make sense of the mysteries in the world around them. By exploring yokai as a concept, we can better understand broader processes of tradition, innovation, storytelling, and individual and communal creativity.
"Myths and Legends of Japan," written in 1913, was an immediate best-seller when it was first released. With the Meiji Restoration, Japan began a period of modernization in the late 19th century that would open up the country to the rest of the world for the first time. This allowed historians like F. Hadland Davis, the author of "Myths and Legends of Japan" an unprecedented opportunity to study and introduce Japanese culture to Western audiences. Stories about creation, mystical creatures, and ghosts, as well as stories about Buddhism, folk tales, and other amazing tales grace the pages of this anthology. The information stored in this collection is not just entertaining, but also well-researched and accurate. Davis included anthropological tidbits as well about how the stories were representative of Japanese culture. Students of Japanese history or those wishing to learn more about Japanese culture will be delighted with this comprehensive collection of Japanese folklore.
Delightfully illustrated, this collection of Japanese myths and fairy tales presents readers with a rich folk tradition. Folk Legends of Japan contains of over one hundred Japanese folk legends. These have been selected by a distinguished American folklorist, drawn from expert Japanese transcriptions of oral legends, and carefully translated in such a way as to bring out the charming, unadorned, and sometimes disarmingly frank folk quality of the originals. Each legend is carefully annotated for the student, scholar, and a full bibliography is provided. Fortunately, the scholarly attributes of the book are now allowed to intrude between the general reader and his enjoyment of the legends themselves. Anyone who loves a genuine old wives' tales, who savors firelit evenings of listening to the folk stories will find much pleasure in these Japanese stories. At the same time the folklorist will find a mine of information, and the Japanophile will discover the folk basis for many of the beliefs and customs that may have puzzled him in the past.
In Seas and Lands, Sir Edwin Arnold gave us the impression that Japan was a real fairyland in the Far East. And he was correct. Herein you will find over 200 magical myths, legends, tales and fables of Japanese deities from the time before the world was brought into being. F. Hadland Davis has categorised these stories, tales and fables into 31 chapters. These are accompanied by 32 glorious full-page colour plates by Evelyn Paul, quite unlike any others we have seen in children’s illustrated books. Herein are stories like: * Ama-Terasu And Susa-No-O, * The Divine Messengers, * Yorimasa, * The Goblin Of Oyeyama, * The Triumph Of Momotaro, * "My Lord Bag Of Rice", * The Coming Of The Lady Kaguya, * The Legend Of The Golden Lotus, * How Tokutaro Was Deluded By Foxes, * The Significance Of Jizō, * The Treasure Ship, * Sentaro's Visit To The Land Of Perpetual Youth, * A Woman And The Bell Of Miidera, * The Snow-Bride; and, oh, so many more exquisite tales like these. Ama-terasu is the central figure in Japanese mythology, for it is from the Sun Goddess that the Mikados are descended, and it is here where this volume starts. Early heroes and warriors are always regarded as minor divinities, and the very nature of Shintōism, associated with ancestor worship, has enriched those of Japan with many a fascinating legend. The Chinese called Japan Jih-pén, "the place the sun comes from," because the archipelago was situated on the east of their own kingdom, and our words Japan and Nippon are corruptions of Jih-pén. Marco Polo called the country Zipangu, and one ancient name describes it as "The-Luxuriant-Reed-Plains-the-land-of-Fresh-Rice-Ears-of-a-Thousand-Autumns-of-Long-Five-Hundred-Autumns." We are not surprised to find that such a very lengthy and descriptive title is not used by the Japanese to-day; but it is of interest to know that the old word for Japan, Yamato, is still frequently employed. Yamato Damashii signifying "The Spirit of Unconquerable Japan." Then, again, we still hear Japan referred to as The Island of the Dragon-fly. We are told in the old Japanese Chronicles that the Emperor, in 630 B.C., ascended a hill called Waki Kamu no Hatsuma, from which he was able to view the land on all sides. He was much impressed by the beauty of the country, and said that it resembled "a dragon-fly licking its hinder parts," and the Island received the name of Akitsu-Shima which translates as "Island of the Dragon-fly" - and so it has remained for millennia. To-day we hear a good deal about the New Japan, and we are too prone to forget the significance of the Old upon which modern Japan has been founded. This volume will give you an insight as to why modern Japan is like it is. So, we invite you to download and curl up with this unique sliver of Eastern culture not seen in print for over a century; and immerse yourself in the tales and fables of yesteryear for we are certain that once picked up, you won’t be able to put it down. 10% of the profit from the sale of this book will be donated to charities. ---------------------------- KEYWORDS/TAGS: fairy tales, folklore, myths, legends, children’s stories, children’s stories, bygone era, fairydom, fairy land, classic stories, children’s bedtime stories, fables, Old world, japan, oriental, east, Japanese deities, Period Of The Gods, Izanagi, Izanami, Ama-Terasu, Susa-No-O, Serpent, Grandchild, Palace, Sea God, Hoderi, Hoori, Heroes, Warriors, Yorimasa, Benkei, Taira, Yoshitsune, Oyeyama, Raiko, Prince Yamato Take, Sacrifice, Ototachibana, Adventures, Momotaro, Triumph, Lord, Bag Of Rice, Bamboo-Cutter, Moon-Maiden, Lady Kaguya, Begging-Bowl, Lord Buddha, Jewel, Mount Horai, Flameproof, Fur Robe, Dragon's Head, Royal Hunt, Celestial, Robe of Feathers, Buddha, Golden Lotus, Crystal Of Buddha, Fox, Inari,
A cyborg detective hunts for a malfunctioning sex doll that turns itself into a killing machine. A Heian-era Taoist slays evil spirits with magic spells from yin-yang philosophy. A young mortician carefully prepares bodies for their journey to the afterlife. A teenage girl drinks a cup of life-giving sake, not knowing its irreversible transformative power. These are scenes from the visually enticing, spiritually eclectic media of Japanese movies and anime. The narratives of courageous heroes and heroines and the myths and legends of deities and their abodes are not just recurring motifs of the cinematic fantasy world. They are pop culture’s representations of sacred subtexts in Japan. Japanese Mythology in Film takes a semiotic approach to uncovering such religious and folkloric tropes and subtexts embedded in popular Japanese movies and anime. Part I introduces film semiotics with plain definitions of terminology. Through familiar cinematic examples, it emphasizes the myth-making nature of modern-day film and argues that semiotics can be used as a theoretical tool for reading film. Part II presents case studies of eight popular Japanese films as models of semiotic analysis. While discussing each film’s use of common mythological motifs such as death and rebirth, its case study also unveils more covert cultural signifiers and folktale motifs, including jizo (a savior of sentient beings) and kori (bewitching foxes and raccoon dogs), hidden in the Japanese filmic text.
Two hundred and twenty tales from medieval Japan—tales that welcome us into a fabulous faraway world populated by saints, scoundrels, ghosts, magical healers, and a vast assortment of deities and demons. Stories of miracles, visions of hell, jokes, fables, and legends, these tales reflect the Japanese civilization. They ably balance the lyrical and the dramatic, the ribald and the profound, offering a window into a long-vanished culture. With black-and-white illustrations throughout Part of the Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library
In a world thought to have been created--and nearly destroyed--by the primordial gods Izanagi and Izanami, mythic heroes battled ferocious dragons and giant spiders, while ordinary bamboo cutters and farmers made unexpected contact with the supernatural. Japanese Mythology A to Z, Second Edition is a valuable, colorful reference for anyone with an interest in mythology or Japanese culture.Coverage includes:
This graphic novel tells the story of Amaterasu, the Japanese Shinto goddess of the sun. Amaterasu’s parents create the first eight islands of Japan. Amaterasu’s father later puts his children in charge of parts of the natural world. Beautiful and kindly Amaterasu is made the goddess of the sun. But her brother, Susano, god of the sea and storms, is jealous of his sister’s position. In fear of Susano’s temper, Amaterasu hides in a cave, plunging the world into darkness. The other gods and goddesses must come up with a clever plan to lure Amaterasu from her hiding place and restore order to the world.
Here, beautifully illustrated and presented in both English and Japanese, are 12 of the best Japanese folktales—shared with generation after generation of Japanese children. These charming tales engage your imagination as you're carried on turtle-back rides, brought to the underwater palace of the dragon princess, and discover a temple with a "tea kettle" that is really a cunning badger in disguise. Stories include: The Tongue-Cut Sparrow The Strong Boy The Marriage of a Mouse The Fisherman and the Tortoise The Luminous Princess The Peach Boy The Kachi Kachi Mountain The Old Men With Wens The Old Man Who Made Trees Blossom The One-Inch Boy The Lucky Cauldron The Monkey and Crab Fight These stories are all richly illustrated, with 98 color illustrations by two of Japan's foremost children's books illustrators. Executed with great skill and imagination, they bring to life the charming characters of these heartwarming tales of old Japan. The tales were originally written in English by author Yuri Yasuda based on her interpretations of traditional Japanese stories. Here they are fully bilingual—each one accompanied by Japanese text. The Japanese versions of each tale include simple kanji with furigana pronunciations to help learners recognize the characters. Japanese Myths, Legends & Folktales is accessible to both English and Japanese-speaking children, as well as to older language learners who wish to enhance their reading ability. This multicultural children's book will entertain, inspire, and educate in equal measure.
Learn Japanese and enjoy folktales at the same time with this whimsically illustrated multicultural children's book! This bilingual edition of A Treasury of Japanese Folktales—presented in both English and Japanese—contains 12 of the best Japanese legends and fairy tales, told to generation after generation of Japanese children. Originally written in English by Yuri Yasuda, based on her interpretations of traditional Japanese tales, these charming stories of rich imagination are now accompanied by Japanese text by Yumi Matsunari and Yumi Yamaguchi. The Japanese text includes basic kanji accompanied by furigana to help beginning learners to recognize and learn the characters. Adventures carry us, on turtle-back, to the splendors of the underwater palace of the dragon princess, to the beautiful hills where Kintaro plays with his animal friends, and to a temple where we discover a "tea kettle" that is really a cunning badger in disguise. The 98 color illustrations, executed with great skill and imagination, bring to life the charming characters of these heart-warming tales of old Japan, which include: Shitakiri Suzume, the Tongue-Cut Sparrow Kintaro, the Strong Boy Kaguya Hime, the Luminous Princess Momotaro, the Peach Boy Bunbuku Chagama, the Lucky Cauldron
"This Dover edition, first published in 2019, is an unabridged republication of the work originally published in 1899 by Little, Brown, and Company, Boston."
Take a step back in time to the origins of Japan's creation myth—told here for the very first time in illustrated form. In the beginning there was nothing—a void. Then the heavens and the earth took shape, as the ancient gods of Japan breathed the first sparks of life into these islands. The ancient Kojiki myth traces the beginnings of the Japanese people, following the rise of the Japanese islands from their humble origins as a lump of clay to a great nation that would one day take its rightful place among the leading nations of the world. Like all creation myths from around the world, the Kojiki story occupies a treasured place in the nation's literature and collective imagination. Kazumi Wilds's striking illustrations capture the drama and intensity of a mythic tale where chaos and demons are unleashed and where darkness is slowly pushed back by the righteous, as good prevails over evil. Kojiki: The Birth of Japan combines the raucous rhythms and startling imagery of today's best graphic novels with a retelling of a classic and timeless Japanese story. This book will be remembered and treasured for years to come by lovers of mythology, folklore and anyone interested in Japanese culture and history.
Grisly accounts of revenge and knightly exploits, a fascinating eyewitness account of a hara-kiri ceremony, tales of vampires and samurai, Buddhist sermons, and the plots of four Noh plays. 38 illustrations.