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Japanese Short Stories


The Tale of Genji

Murasaki Shikibu

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Buncho (Java Sparrow)

Soseki Natsume

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The Tattooer (いれずみ)

Junichiro Tanizaki (たにざき じゅんいちろう)


He is the famous tattooer. He is looking for the most beautiful woman in the world to draw the tattoo on her back.
Junichiro Tanizaki was the famous author in Japan. This novel is important to study Japanese culture.

かれ は

もっとも うつくしい 女性じょせい を

さがしていた

  もっとも:most うつくしい:beautiful

  女性じょせい:woman さがす:look for



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Run, Melos, Run (はしれ メロス)

Osamu Dazai (だざい おさむ)


Melos runs to the city. He encounters many tribulations, such as the overflowing of the river and attacks by bandits. But he runs for his close friend and his death.

かれ は はしる。

日没にちぼつ まで に

か なければならない。

 かれ:he はしる:run

 日没にちぼつ:susnset く:arrive なければならない:must

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Ten Nights of Dreams
The First Night


Soseki Natsume

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Old Stories of Japan

For Beginners
Old Stories of Japan にほん むかし ばなし

   Urashima Taro うらしま たろう
   The Tongue-Cut Sparrow した きり すずめ
   Click-Clack Mountain かちかち やま

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Ghost Stories

[New]
Ghost Stories(ゆうれい の はなし)

   The Woman of the Snow(ゆき おんな)
   A Dead Secret(し の ひみつ)
   The Faceless Ghost(むじな)

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ゆきかり で  部屋へや の なか に

おんな が  えた。

 ゆきかり:the snow-light    部屋へや:room
 おんな:woman    える:see


He was awakened by a showering of snow in his face. The door of the hut had been forced open; and, by the snow-light (yuki-akari), he saw a woman in the room, - a woman all in white. She was bending above Mosaku, and blowing her breath upon him; - and her breath was like a bright white smoke.




The Princess Kaguya

[New]
The Princess Kaguya
かぐや ひめ
The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter
たけ とり ものがたり


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彼女かのじょ は

たけ から うまれた。

 彼女かのじょ:she  たけ:bamboo  うまれる:be born

One day, while walking in the bamboo forest, an old, childless bamboo cutter came across a mysterious, shining stalk of bamboo. After cutting it open, he found inside it an infant the size of his thumb. He rejoiced to find such a beautiful girl and took her home. He and his wife raised her as their own child and named her Kaguya-hime. (The Princess Kaguya



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