Do you know what the top 6 Japanese fairy tales are?
Reading short stories in Japanese is a fun way to learn the Japanese language and culture. Check out the 6 Japanese fairy tale stories below and learn must-know folk story words and phrases in Japanese!
1. Top 6 Japanese Fairy Tales
1. Momotarō, the Peach Boy
The Japanese title is 桃太郎 (ももたろう; Momotarō). Born from a peach and raised by an old couple, Momotaro grows into a strong boy and starts fighting evil creatures. He is a symbol of bravery and humility.
2. The Crane of Gratitude
The Japanese title is 鶴の恩返し (つるのおんがえし; Tsuru no on-gaeshi). An old man frees a crane and later takes in a young woman. Behind closed doors, she turns into a crane and makes beautiful cloth out of her feathers.
3. The Rollong Rice-balls
The Japanese title is おむすびころりん (Omusubi kororin). A kind man drops his rice-ball and follows it down a hole into the mouse world. He’s rewarded, but when a mean-spirited man tries the same, he is punished.
4. The Inch-High Samurai
The Japanese title is 一寸法師 (いっすんぼうし; Issun bōshi). A boy who is only an inch tall protects a noblewoman from a demon. He’s swallowed by the demon and fights his way out from the inside.
5. The Story of Urashimatarō
The Japanese title is 浦島太郎 (うらしまたろう; Urashimatarō). A fisherman is taken to the Dragon Palace under the sea. He stays for 3 days, but when he returns to the surface, 300 years have passed.
6. Bamboo Hat for the Jizō Statuettes
The Japanese title is かさじぞう (Kasa jizō). A man goes to market to get mochi to celebrate New Year’s but gives his hats to the jizou. Later they reward his kindness.
2. Fairy Tale Characters and Words in Japanese
|昔々||mukashi mukashi||once upon a time|
Check out even more fairy tale words in the video below!
You might not understand every single word in Japanese stories at first but try to guess what they mean in context. Illustrations will also help you understand the story. After reading it, make sure to look up the words in the dictionary and read the story a few more times. If you do that, you’ll surely get better at reading Japanese.
So what Japanese tale would you like to read first? Do you know any other fairy tale stories in Japan? Did we miss any Japanese fairy tale words? Let us know in the comments!