Japanese Lessons

Japanese Graded Readers (JLPT N4): ツルの恩返し / The Crane of Gratitude


Japanese Graded Readers: Fairy Tales and Short Stories with Read-aloud Method

Lesson 3-1: ツルの恩返おんがえし / The Crane of Gratitude

Slow Speed
Slow Speed with Pauses
Natural Speed
Natural Speed with Pauses



Japanese Script

むかしむかし、わかおとこ一人ひとりやまんでいました。おとこはおかねがないので、やまって生活せいかつしています。あるふゆおとこいえかえっていると、へんおとこえました。「これはなんおとだ?」おとこおとがするしょにゆっくりとかいました。すると、ゆきうえやすんでいるツルをつけました。へんおとはツルがいたこえだったのです。ツルはつかれてうごけないようでした。 おとこはそれをると、いそいでいえかえりました。そして、ぶんよるごはんをって、ツルがいるところにかいました。「これをべて。」おとこはそうって、ツルのよこにごはんをきました。ツルがごはんをべているあいだに、おとこしずかにいえかえりました。

English Translation

Once upon a time, a young man lived in a mountain alone. The man didn’t have money, so he lived on selling trees in the mountain. One day in winter, when he was going home, a strange sound was heard. “What is this sound?” The man slowly headed toward the place making the sound. Then, he found a crane taking a rest on the snow. The strange sound was the voice the crane sang. She looked tired and unable to move. The man looked at it and then went home in a hurry. And, he took his dinner and headed toward the place where she was. “Eat this,” the man said and put the meal beside her. While the crane was eating the meal, the man quietly went home.


Words Types Meanings
むかしむかし set phrase  long ago
一人ひとり noun alone, unmarried, solitary 
む  u-verb  to live, to reside, to inhabit 
かね  noun  money 
る  u-verb  to sell 
ある  pre-noun adjectival  a certain, some 
へん noun, na-adjective  strange, odd, peculiar, weird 
u-verb  to sing (bird) 
ところ  noun, suffix  place, spot, scene, site 


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