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  • Once upon a time, there was an old bamboo cutter.

  • When he was gathering bamboo in the mountains one day, he came across a bamboo stalk that was shining very brightly.

  • Wondering what it was, the old man cut the bamboo, and found a cute little girl inside.

  • He thought it must have been a gift from the gods, and decided to take the little girl home.

  • He showed the girl to the old woman, and she instantly fell in love with her.

  • They named her Princess Kaguya.

  • They raised her with tender loving care, and she became a very beautiful lady.

  • Rumors about Princess Kaguya's beauty spread throughout the country, and soon, five great young men came to ask her for her hand in marriage.

  • Princess Kaguya just wanted to live a quiet life, so she came up with an idea.

  • She said, "I will marry the one who can find what I want."

  • Things she asked for were very difficult to find:

  • a stone pot of Buddha,

  • a cowry shell from the nest of a swallow,

  • leather clothes made from the skins of the legendary mice,

  • a branch from a jewel tree,

  • and the five-colored jewels from the dragon neck.

  • No man could find these things, and they all gave up.

  • As the day of the full moon approached, Princess Kaguya started crying as she looked at the moon.

  • "Why are you crying?" asked the old man and woman.

  • "I am not of this land. I am from the moon.

  • Escorts from the moon will come and take me back on the night of the full moon in August.

  • I must return where I am from," said Princess Kaguya, and told the old man and woman that she would miss them very much.

  • The old man and woman decided to protect Princess Kaguya from the moon escorts by placing warriors around the house.

  • However, the warriors couldn't move when they saw the escorts from the moon.

  • Due to a blinding light, the warriors could not drive them away.

  • Princess Kaguya thanked the old couple and returned to the moon.

Once upon a time, there was an old bamboo cutter.

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