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Japanese Fairy Tale Series, Ho.

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THE HARE OF INABA.
IN

^NGLISH BY

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ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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THE HARE OF

INABA.

,

there were

once eighty-one
brothers,
in the land.

who were
all

Princes
jealous

They were

of one another, each one wishing
to

be

King,

to

rule

over

the

others,

and over the whole KingBesides
to
this,

dom.

each
the

one

wanted
Princess.

marry

same

She was the Princess of
in Inaba.
their

Yakami

At last they made up

minds

that they would go together to Inaba,

and each one

try to persuade the

Princess to marry him.

Although

eighty of these brothers were jealous

of one another, yet they
in hating,

all

agreed
to the

and being unkind

eighty-first,
tle,

who was good and

gen-

and did not like their rough, quar-

relsome ways.

When

they set out

upon

their journey, they

made

the

poor eighty-first brother walk behind
them, and carry the bag, just as
if

he had been their servant, although

he was

their

own

brother,

and

as
all.

much
--':

a Prince as any of them

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By and
came
to

by, the

eighty

Princes

Cape Keta, and there they
all

found a poor hare, with
plucked out, lying

his fur

down

very sick

and miserable. The eighty Princes
said to the hare,

"We

will

tell

you

what

you

should do.

Go and
then
lie

bathe in the sea water, and

down on

the

slope

of a

high mountain, and

let

the wind

blow upon you. That

will soon

make

your fur grow, we promise you."

So the poor hare believed them,

and went and bathed

in the sea,

and

afterwards lay
the

down

in the sun

and

wind

to dry.

But, as the salt
all

water dried, the skin of his body
cracked and
split

with the sun and

the wind, so that he was in terrible
pain,

and lay there

crying, in a

much

worse state than he was before.

Now
a long
because
carry,

the eighty-first brother

was

way behind
he
but

the

others,

had the luggage
at
last

to

he came up,

staggering under the weight of the

heavy bag.

When

he sew the hare

he asked,
crying?"

"Why
"Oh

are you lying there

dear!" said the hare,

"just stop a

moment and I
story.

will tell

you

all

my

I was in the
to cross

island of Oki,

and I wanted
I

over to this land.

didn't

know

how

to get over, but at last I hit

upon a

plan.

I said to the sea
us

crocodiles,

"Let

count

how

sea, many crocodiles and how many hares there are in with the the land. And now to begin

there are in the

crocodiles.

Come, every one of you,
in a row, across from

and be down
this island to
will step

upon

Cape Keta, then I each one, and count

you as I run
finished

across.

When

I have
shall

counting

you,

we

count the hares, and then we

shall

know whether thre
or most crocodiles."

are most hares,

The

crocodiles

came

and

lay

down

in a row,

Then

I stepped on
as
I
I

them and counted them
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ran
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across,

and was

just going to

jump

on

shore,

when

I laughed and said,

"You

silly

crocodiles, I don't care

how many

of you there are. I only
to get across by."

wanted a bridge

Oh! why did I
safe

boast until I was

on dry land!

For the

last

crocodile, the

one which lay at the

seized me, and very end of the row,

plucked off

all

my

fur,"

"And

serve

you right

too, for

being so tricky."

said the eighty-first brother; "however,

go on with your

story,"

"As

I was lying here crying,"

v

continued the hare,:"the eighty Princes

who went by

before you, told

me

to bathe in salt water,

and lie down in

the wind. I did as they told me, but

I am ten times worse than before, and

my whole body is smarting and
Then

sore."

the eighty-first brother said to the to the hare, "Go quickly now
near. river, it is quite

Wash

yourself

take well with the fresh water, then

on the pollen of the sedges growing
the river bank, spread
the ground,
it

about on
it; if

and

roll

among

you do

this,

your fur grow again."

will heal, and your skin So the hare

did as he was
told;

and

this

time he was quite cured, and his
fur

grew thicker than

ever.

Then
first

the hare said to the eighty-

brother,

"As

for those eighty

Princes, your brothers,

they shall not get
the Princess

of

Inaba. Although

you carry

the
.,-'

bag, yet your

Highness

shall at last

get

both the princess and the country/'

Which

things

came

to pass, for the

Princess would have nothing to

do with those eighty bad brothers,
but chose the eighty-first

who was

kind and good. Then he was made

King

of the country, and lived hap-

pily all his
life.

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