HOMEJapanese Fairy Tale Series (「日本昔噺」シリーズ) > 『花咲爺』(Hanasaka jii)
The Old Man Who Made the Dead Trees Blossom

English ed. 1885(Meiji 18) Catalogue No. 9


French ed. 1886(Meiji 19) Catalogue No. 108
German ed. 1889(Meiji 22) Catalogue No. 131


Portuguese ed. 1912(Meiji 45) Catalogue No. 145


Spanish ed. 1914(Taisho 3) Catalogue No. 152



The Story of Hana Sakashi Jiji
Matsumuro Yachizo Version 1900(Meiji 33)
Catalogue No. 179

『花咲爺』(Hanasaka jii
訳者:デビッド・タムソン(Translator : David Thompson)
絵師:小林永濯(Illustrator : Eitaku Kobayashi)
■ あらすじ 
Outline of this story
 When a dog began scratching at a certain spot, a kind-hearted old man, the master of the dog, dug there and found a quantity of gold. A neighboring greedy old couple borrowed the dog, which began scratching at another spot. But when they dug there, all they found was a lot of filthy stuff. In a fit of anger, the greedy old man killed the dog and buried it beside a tree. In his grief, the kind old man cut down the tree and made a mortar out of the wood. When he used the mortar to pound barley, the barley multiplied. Hearing of this, the greedy old man again borrowed the mortar, but the barley he pounded split apart. In another fit of anger, he broke the mortar to pieces and burned the pieces as fire wood. The kind old man scattered the ashes from the mortar, and the ashes made dead trees blossom. The prince of the country saw this and plentifully rewarded him. Eager to get the same kind of reward, the greedy old man sprinkled ashes, too, but they flew into the eyes of the prince, who punished him as a result.
 This is supposed to be one of the five best-loved Japanese fairy tales. The editions in different languages published by Hasegawa were made from the English translation by D. Thompson. The format, plot and the illustrator (Eitaku Kobayashi) all follow it. The English version published by Yachizo Matsumuro, however, was written by a Japanese author named Hiroyuki Hayashi. It is longer and has a slightly different content. It also has almost no illustrations and does not credit any illustrator.