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The Taiheiki: A Chronicle of Medieval Japan - translated with an introduction and notes
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The Taiheiki: A Chronicle of Medieval Japan - translated with an introduction and notes

3.58  ·  Rating details ·  45 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
An epic saga of samurai warfare in medieval Japan

This celebrated literary classic has delighted generations of Japanese. In its pages, you will find a vivid contemporary description of the fourteenth-century intrigues and battles that led to the destruction of the Hojo family, the military overlords of the nation, and made it possible for the Emperor Go-Daigo (1288-1339),
Paperback, 452 pages
Published March 15th 2004 by Tuttle Publishing (first published January 1977)
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Jun 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Recommended to Brendan by: NYPL
Rough reading, and McCoullough did her best to cut down on this version (not that there are really other translated versions...) The Translation was good, there were many phrases used to exhaustion, but that's not the the translator, from what I know, but the writer.

Usually I prefer to read the source materials, and then the other writings after, but I didn't really have a choice in this case if I wanted to keep up some kind of forward moving chronology. The last 4 or so books I've read (and oth
Bernie Gourley
Jan 27, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: readers interested in medieval Japan, samurai, and war.
Let me be blunt, “The Taiheiki” isn’t a book you pick up to read a gripping story. While it’s considered a work of fiction, it reads like a history. In some sense, it is a history. It does follow the broad brush strokes of the events in Japan in the early 14th century. However, there are way too many characters to keep track of, or to remember who is on the side of whom, or even to know whether a given individual is worth remembering or whether they’ll soon die an ignominious death. If you don’t ...more
May 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: medieval-japan
This is a 14th century account of the political and military events that took place between 1330-1333, when the Emperor Go-Daigo and his allies challenged the authority of the Kamakura bakufu. While it's not an entirely faithful telling, it is a source many historians look back to, just hopefully not for precise details as they're rather absurd. The translation is easy to read, and while the middle chunk is incredibly redundant with what seemed like nearly every battle ending the same way - and ...more
Hilda Ellis-Davidson
Sep 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adventure, japan
Ultimately, this is the story of the battles that created modern day japan.
Ryan Doherty
May 10, 2007 rated it it was amazing
This chronicle of the chaos of medieval Japan is a riveting tale of political intrigue, loyalty, betrayal, clan rivalry and raging samurai warfare.

Varying families, clans and factions had been vying for power throughout the thirteenth century, and the book tells the story of how everything came to a head when Emperor Go-Daigo ascended the throne in 1318 and decided he'd had enough of the imperial throne being rendered powerless by the bakufu (military government), and more recently by the ultra
Aug 26, 2013 rated it it was ok
Alright - reading about some of the battles, the number of deaths - especially the number of samurai warriors who suddenly kill themselves when their lord dies in battle - is pretty cool. There really are so many insights into Samurai culture and this era of Japanese history. The problem is that it is so difficult to read. Honestly, this needs to have a sparks note. Shakespeare is easier to understand. For some things, you need to have a grounding in the culture and history in order to understan ...more
Feb 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japan
Most awesome piece of classic lit I've read in years! Wish there were a sequel.
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