Author(s): A. B. Mitford; Michael Dylan Foster (Foreword by)
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.