日本語 | English

■ We are featuring Instant Curry, July 31 to August 30.







Atom_feed
The Ise Tales (Tales of Ise)
The First Uta-monogatari in Japan
Date:14, Jul, 2021
Investigated and Written by Misaka Youhei
About our introductory articles


Maybe you ask me like this. Isn't The Ise Tales (Tales of Ise) anything like a novel or a fictional story according to the title? Is it the collection of waka? The question is so reasonable. I think so. However, I am bringing it as a collection of tanka here. The Ise Tales is often called “the first Uta-monogatari in Japan.” Uta means tanka, monogatari does tales. It means that people have regarded the tanka as the main character of the Ise Tales.

I know most people have not read it actually. Then I am introducing here. In fact, we never know who wrote the Ise Tales. Some said Kino Tsurayuki did, others said Ise the female tanka poet did. We have no way to reach the real situation now. And we don't know when it officially appeared in history. One theory says it was written in the Heian era (794-1192).

They say the model of the main role is Ariwara-no Narihira (825–880). Who is it? He was the Japanese courtier and the popular waka poet in the early Heian era, named one of the Six Poetic Geniuses (Rokkasen). It means that you can take the tales as the almost real things about Ariwara-no Narihira. He is also well-known as the matchless playboy. Some say he made love with 3,733 women while alive. Who on earth counted the number? I wonder.

Anyway, he was the great tanka poet. No doubt about it. And so the Ise Tales naturally contained a lot of tanka poems. It has 125 sections in all, most of them contain tanka. That is the reason why they called it Uta-monogatari. And I believe it also works as the tanka collection.

about the Ise tales

・Writer: Unknown
・Times: They say it appeared in the Heian era





 

Salad Anniversary
The Best-seller, 1987