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Green Willow And Other Japanese Fairy Tales | by Grace James



These tales and legends have been collected from many sources. Some of them have been selected from the Ko-ji-ki, or Record of Ancient Matters, which contains the mythology of Japan. Many are told from memory, being relics of childish days, originally heard from the lips of a schoolfellow or a nurse. Certain of them, again, form favourite subjects for representation upon the Japanese stage. A number of the stories now gathered together have been translated into English long before this, and have appeared in this country in one form or another; others are probably new to an English public.

TitleGreen Willow And Other Japanese Fairy Tales
AuthorGrace James
PublisherMacMillan And Co.
Year1912
Copyright1912, MacMillan And Co.
AmazonGreen Willow And Other Japanese Fairy Tales
The Moon Maiden

With Illustrations In Colour By Warwick Goble

Note To Miss Etsuko Kato

Thanks are due to Marcus B. Huish, Esq., who has allowed his story, "The Espousal of the Rat's Daughter," to be included in this collection; and to Mrs. T. H. James for permission to use her version of "The Matsuyama Mirror."

-I. Green Willow
Tomodata, the young samurai, owed allegiance to the Lord of Noto. He was a soldier, a courtier, and a poet. He had a sweet voice and a beautiful face, a noble form and a very winning address. He was a...
-II. The Flute
House to the dwelling of the dead was snow also, undisturbed save for the faint prints of a child's sandalled feet. In the spring-time he girded up his robe and went forth to see the cherry blossom, m...
-III. The Tea-Kettle
Long ago, as I've heard tell, there dwelt at the temple of Morinji, in the Province of Kotsuke, a holy priest. Now there were three things about this reverend man. First, he was wrapped up in meditat...
-IV. The Peony Lantern
In Yedo there dwelt a samurai called Hagiwara. He was a samurai of the hatamoto, which is of all the ranks of samurai the most honourable. He possessed a noble figure and a very beautiful face, and wa...
-The Peony Lantern. Continued
Alack! Alack! cried the servant, the youth has the fever, or he is perchance mad. Hagiwara faltered not at all. He looked neither to the right nor to the left. Straight forward he went, for he sa...
-V. The Sea King And The Magic Jewels
This is a tale beloved by the children of Japan, and by the old folk - a tale of magical jewels and a visit to the Sea King's palace. Prince Rice-Ear-Ruddy-Plenty loved a beautiful and royal maiden, ...
-The Sea King And The Magic Jewels. Continued
And Shiko-Tsuchi-no-Kami took him by the sleeve to where a boat moved upon the water, and set him in the boat and pushed it from the shore, saying, My son, pursue the pleasant path that Tsuki-Yomi-no...
-VI. The Good Thunder
Folks say that Rai-den, the Thunder, is an unloving spirit, fearful and revengeful, cruel to man. These are folks who are mortally afraid of the storm, and who hate lightning and tempest; they speak a...
-VII. The Black Bowl
Long ago, in a part of the country not very remote from Kioto, the great gay city, there dwelt an honest couple. In a lonely place was their cottage, upon the outskirts of a deep wood of pine trees. F...
-The Black Bowl. Continued
Sir, I do not understand your song, said the girl with the bowl on her head. Yet it is plain enough, said the ballad-singer, and went his way. He came to the house of a passing rich farmer. In he...
-VIII. The Star Lovers
All you that are true lovers, I beseech you pray the gods for fair weather upon the seventh night of the seventh moon. For patience' sake and for dear love's sake, pray, and be pitiful that upon that...
-IX. Horaizan
Jofuku was the Wise Man of China. Many books he read, and he never forgot what was in them. All the characters he knew as he knew the lines in the palm of his hand. He learned secrets from birds and b...
-X. Reflections
Long enough ago there dwelt within a day's journey of the city of Kioto a gentleman of simple mind and manners, but good estate. His wife, rest her soul, had been dead these many years, and the good m...
-Reflections. Continued
Oh, the pretty silver moons! says the simple soul to himself. And he dared to come near and take up a mirror in his hand. The next minute he turned as white as rice and sat him down on the seat in ...
-XI. The Story Of Susa, The Impetuous
When Izanagi, the Lord who Invites, turned his back upon the unclean place, and bade farewell to Yomi, the World of the Dead, whither he had journeyed upon a quest, he beheld once more the Land of Fre...
-The Story Of Susa, The Impetuous. Continued
Then dark was the Plain of High Heaven, and black dark the Central Land of Reed Plains, and eternal night prevailed. Hereupon the voices of the deities as they wandered over the face of the earth were...
-XII. The Wind In The Pine Tree
It was a Deity from High Heaven that planted the Pine Tree. So long ago that the crane cannot remember it, and the tortoise knows it only by hearsay from his great-grandmother, the heavenly deity des...
-XIII. Flower Of The Peony
Aya, sweet maid, was the only child of a daimyo of the Province of Omi. Mother had she none, and her father was a noble lord and a warrior. He was at the Court of the Shogun, or he had weighty affairs...
-XIV. The Mallet
There were once two farmer men who were brothers. Both of them worked hard in seed-time and in harvest-time. They stood knee-deep in water to plant out the young rice, bending their backs a thousand t...
-The Mallet. Continued
When Cho heard of this he goes and chops his own silk-worms in two with a sharp knife; but he gained nothing by that, for the silk-worms never moved again, but stayed as dead as dead, and his wife had...
-XV. The Bell Of Dojoji
The monk Anchin was young in years but old in scholarship. Every day for many hours he read the Great Books of the Good Law and never wearied, and hard characters were not hard to him. The monk Anchi...
-XVI. The Maiden Of Unai
The Maiden of Unai was fair as an earthly deity, but the eyes of man might not behold her. She dwelt in a hidden place in her father's house, and of what cheer she made the live-long day not a soul co...
-XVII. The Robe Of Feathers
Mio Strand is in the Province of Suruga. Its sand is yellow and fine, strewn with rose shells at the ebb tide. Its pine trees are ancient and they lean all one way, which is the way that the wild wind...
-XVIII. The Singing Bird Of Heaven
Ama Terassu, the Glorious, the Light of High Heaven, commanded, saying, His Augustness, my August Child, who is called the Conqueror, shall descend to the land. For it is a Land of Luxuriant Reed Pla...
-XIX. The Cold Lady
Once an old man and a young man left their village in company, in order to make a journey into a distant province. Now, whether they went for pleasure or for profit, for matters of money, of love or w...
-XX. The Fire Quest
The Wise Poet sat reading by the light of his taper. It was a night of the seventh month. The cicala sang in the flower of the pomegranate, the frog sang by the pond. The moon was out and all the star...
-XXI. A Legend Of Kwannon
In the days of the gods, Ama-no-Hashidate was the Floating Bridge of Heaven. By way of this bridge came the deities from heaven to earth, bearing their jewelled spears, their great bows and heavenly-f...
-XXII. The Espousal Of The Rat's Daughter
Mr. Nedzumi, the Rat, was an important personage in the hamlet where he lived - at least he was so in his own and his wife's estimation. This was in part, of course, due to the long line of ancestors ...
-The Espousal Of The Rat's Daughter. Continued
Certainly, rejoined the Sun. It is the Cloud. Oftentimes when I have set myself to illumine the world he comes across my path and covers my face so that my subjects may not see me, and so long as h...
-XXIII. The Land Of Yomi
From the glorious clouds of High Heaven, from the divine ether, the vital essence, and the great concourse of eternal deities, there issued forth the heavenly pair - Izanagi, His Augustness, the Lord ...
-XXIV. The Spring Lover And The Autumn Lover
This is a story of the youth of Yamato, when the gods still walked upon the Land of the Reed Plains and took pleasure in the fresh and waving rice-ears of the country-side. There was a lady having in...
-XXV. The Strange Story Of The Golden Comb
In ancient days two samurai dwelt in Sendai of the North. They were friends and brothers in arms. Hasunuma one was named, and the other Saito. Now it happened that a daughter was born to the house of...
-The Strange Story Of The Golden Comb. Continued
Lord, said the brave young man, there are three ways left, the sword, the strong girdle, and the river. These are the short roads to Yomi. Farewell. But Hasunuma held the young man by the arm. N...
-XXVI. The Jelly-Fish Takes A Journey
Once upon a time the jelly-fish was a very handsome fellow. His form was beautiful, and round as the full moon. He had glittering scales and fins and a tail as other fishes have, but he had more than ...
-XXVII. Urashima
Urashima was a fisherman of the Inland Sea. Every night he plied his trade. He caught fishes both great and small, being upon the sea through the long hours of darkness. Thus he made his living. Upo...
-XXVIII. Tamamo, The Fox Maiden
A pedlar journeyed with his pack upon the great high-road which leads to the city of Kioto. He found a child sitting all alone by the wayside. Well, my little girl, he said, and what make you all ...
-XXIX. Momotaro
If you'll believe me there was a time when the fairies were none so shy as they are now. That was the time when beasts talked to men, when there were spells and enchantments and magic every day, when ...
-XXX. The Matsuyama Mirror
A long, long time ago there lived in a quiet spot a young man and his wife. They had one child, a little daughter, whom they both loved with all their hearts. I cannot tell you their names, for they h...
-XXXI. Broken Images
Once there lived two brothers who were princes in the land. The elder brother was a hunter. He loved the deep woods and the chase. He went from dawn to dark with his bow and his arrows. Swiftly he co...
-XXXII. The Tongue-Cut Sparrow
Once upon a time there was an old man who lived all alone. And there was an old woman who lived all alone. The old man was merry and kind and gentle, with a good word and a smile for all the world. Th...
-XXXIII. The Nurse
Ide the samurai was wedded to a fair wife and had an only child, a boy called Fugiwaka. Ide was a mighty man of war, and as often as not he was away from home upon the business of his liege lord. So t...
-XXXIV. The Beautiful Dancer Of Yedo
This is the tale of Sakura-ko, Flower of the Cherry, who was the beautiful dancer of Yedo. She was a geisha, born a samurai's daughter, that sold herself into bondage after her father died, so that he...
-XXXV. Hana-Saka-Jiji
In the early days there lived a good old couple. All their lives long they had been honest and hard-working, but they had always been poor. Now in their old age it was all they could do to make both e...
-XXXVI. The Moon Maiden
There was an old bamboo cutter called Take Tori. He was an honest old man, very poor and hard-working, and he lived with his good old wife in a cottage on the hills. Children they had none, and little...
-XXXVII. Karma
The young man, Ito Tatewaki, was returning homeward after a journey which he had taken to the city of Kioto. He made his way alone and on foot, and he went with his eyes bent upon the ground, for care...
-XXXVIII. The Sad Story Of The Yaoya's Daughter
There was a wandering ballad-singer who came to a great house in Yedo where they wished to be entertained. Will you have a dance or a song? said the ballad-singer; or shall I tell you a story? Th...
-A Selection Of Macmillan & Co.'s Colour Books
The Ingoldsby Legends Or, Mirth And Marvels With 16 Full-page Illustrations in Colour by H. G. Theaker. 8vo. 5s. net. Alice's Adventures In Wonderland And Through The Looking-Glass And What Alice Fo...









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