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Momotaro the son of a peach.
Start of Story
Momotaro landed, and with the hope of finding some way of entrance,
walked up the path towards the top, followed by the monkey and the dog.
They soon came upon two beautiful damsels washing clothes in a stream.
Momotaro saw that the clothes were blood-stained, and that as the two
maidens washed, the tears were falling fast down their cheeks. He
stopped and spoke to them:
"Who are you, and why do you weep?"
"We are captives of the Demon King. We were carried away from our homes
to this island, and though we are the daughters of Daimios (Lords), we
are obliged to be his servants, and one day he will kill us"--and the
maidens held up the blood-stained clothes--"and eat us, and there is no
one to help us!"
And their tears burst out afresh at this horrible thought.
"I will rescue you," said Momotaro. "Do not weep any more, only show me
how I may get into the castle."
Then the two ladies led the way and showed Momotaro a little back door
in the lowest part of the castle wall--so small that Momotaro could
hardly crawl in.
The pheasant, who was all this time fighting hard, saw Momotaro and his
little band rush in at the back.
Momotaro's onslaught was so furious that the devils could not stand
against him. At first their foe had been a single bird, the pheasant,
but now that Momotaro and the dog and the monkey had arrived they were
bewildered, for the four enemies fought like a hundred, so strong were
they. Some of the devils fell off the parapet of the castle and were
dashed to pieces on the rocks beneath; others fell into the sea and
were drowned; many were beaten to death by the three animals.
The chief of the devils at last was the only one left. He made up his
mind to surrender, for he knew that his enemy was stronger than mortal
He came up humbly to Momotaro and threw down his iron bar, and kneeling
down at the victor's feet he broke off the horns on his head in token
of submission, for they were the sign of his strength and power.
"I am afraid of you," he said meekly. "I cannot stand against you. I
will give you all the treasure hidden in this castle if you will spare
"It is not like you, big devil, to beg for mercy, is it? I cannot spare
your wicked life, however much you beg, for you have killed and
tortured many people and robbed our country for many years."
Then Momotaro tied the devil chief up and gave him into the monkey's
charge. Having done this, he went into all the rooms of the castle and
set the prisoners free and gathered together all the treasure he found.
The dog and the pheasant carried home the plunder, and thus Momotaro
returned triumphantly to his home, taking with him the devil chief as a
The two poor damsels, daughters of Daimios, and others whom the wicked
demon had carried off to be his slaves, were taken safely to their own
homes and delivered to their parents.
The whole country made a hero of Momotaro on his triumphant return, and
rejoiced that the country was now freed from the robber devils who had
been a terror of the land for a long time.
The old couple's joy was greater than ever, and the treasure Momotaro
had brought home with him enabled them to live in peace and plenty to
the end of their days