Ugetsu Monogatari: Tales of Moonlight and Rain: A Complete English Version of the Eighteenth-Century Japanese Collection of Tales of the Supernatural

By Ueda Akinari; Leon M. Zolbrod | Go to book overview

remembered about the Mound of Beasts, 351 and gazing toward the Zuisenji Temple, he thought, 'Even here in broad daylight, how ghastly it all seems!'

Muzen told his story to people in the capital, and that is how the tale has come to be recorded.


VI
THE CALDRON OF
KIBITSU
(Kibitsu no Kama)352

'You may hate the clamours of a jealous wife, 353 but when you grow old you'll learn her true worth.' Who was it that uttered those words? Even if a jealous wife does not cause you great misfortune, she will interfere with your business affairs, destroy your possessions, and bring down on you your neighbours' criticism. And if she does cause you genuine calamity, you might lose your home, ruin your country, or become an object of ridicule for the whole world. Since ancient times the poison of jealousy has stricken untold multitudes of men.

When a jealous woman dies, she may become a serpent. She can wreak her, fury with a thunderbolt. 354 Even if you should cut the flesh of a vengeful woman into mincemeat, 355 it wouldn't help. True, these are extreme examples, and if a husband watches closely over his own conduct and educates his wife, he can surely avoid such disasters. Nonetheless, if a man is overcome by some capricious whim and arouses his wife's jealous nature, 356 he may end up by doing harm to himself. 'To tame a bird it takes determination; to tame a wife it requires a husband's native manliness.' This saying is certainly true.

-149-

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Ugetsu Monogatari: Tales of Moonlight and Rain: A Complete English Version of the Eighteenth-Century Japanese Collection of Tales of the Supernatural
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 5
  • Translator's Foreword 9
  • Contents 13
  • Illustrations 15
  • Introduction 19
  • Notes on the Introduction 88
  • Volume One 97
  • Preface 97
  • I - White Peak (shiramine) 98
  • II - Chrysanthemum Tryst (kikuka No Chigiri) 109
  • Volume Two 121
  • III - The House Amid the Thickets (asaji Ga Yado) 121
  • IV - The Carp That Came to My Dream (muō No Rigyo) 132
  • Volume Three 139
  • V - Bird of Paradise (buppōsō) 139
  • VI - The Caldron of Kibitsu (kibitsu No Kama) 149
  • Volume Four 161
  • VII - The Lust of the White Serpent (jasei No In) 161
  • Volume Five 185
  • VIII - The Blue Hood (aozukin) 185
  • IX - Wealth and Poverty (himpuku-Ron) 194
  • Notes on the Text 207
  • Appendix 1 - Imperial Succession in the Twelfth Century 261
  • Select Bibliography 277
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