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The Lost Chapter Of The World’s First Novel Was Found In A Japanese Storeroom

A new part of The Tale of Genji was found in a house in Tokyo. The Tale of Genji was completed around the year 1010 by a woman later named by historians as Murasaki Shikibu, and is considered as the world’s first novel. The original manuscript of the work no longer exists, but the oldest transcribed copies of the story are believed to be done by the poet Teika. The work consisted of four parts until the fifth part was discovered on an oblong chest in a storeroom of the residence of Motofuyu Okochi (a descendant of a former feudal lord), as The Guardian detailed: 

The manuscript had been kept in an oblong chest in a storeroom at the Tokyo home of Motofuyu Okochi, a descendant of the former feudal lord of the Mikawa-Yoshida Domain in Aichi Prefecture, the Japan Times reported.
Experts at Reizeike Shiguretei Bunko, a foundation for the preservation of cultural heritage, have now confirmed its authenticity, with the handwriting of the text, and the cover of the manuscript, identical to other Teika manuscripts. The foundation said although the newly-found manuscript “mostly” matches the common version of the story, there are some grammatical differences.

image credit: via wikimedia commons


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