Skip to product information
1 of 1

The Ten Thousand Leaves

The Ten Thousand Leaves

Poems from the Man'yōshū

translated by Ian Hideo Levy
Regular price $25.00
Regular price Sale price $25.00
Sign up for our newsletter to be notified when this book and other new titles are available for purchase:

Winner of the 1982 American Book Award for Translation

The first and greatest anthology of classical Japanese poetry, the Man'yōshū is considered, along with The Tale of Genji, to be one the most important works in classical Japanese literature. In Japanese the title means “Anthology of Ten Thousand Leaves,” the “anthology of anthologies” from the first flowering of an artistic and literary sensibility in Japan during the Asuka and Nara periods—the seventh and eighth centuries. Exhibiting an astonishing variety, the poems range from the grand animistic rhetoric of the laments for the imperial family to the stark and curiously modern “Dialogue of the Destitute,” from the elegant banquet verse of aristocrats to the “poems of the frontier guardsmen.” As its name suggests, The Ten Thousand Leaves represents a culling of what was considered the best from an epoch of cultural and literary innovation perhaps unparalleled in Japanese history.

This edition incorporates books one through five of the twenty that make up the original Man'yōshū and includes an introduction by the translator, Ian Hideo Levy, that provides a general historical and cultural background for this monumental work.

Additional Book Information

Series: NYRB Poets
ISBN: 9781681378909
Pages: 432
Publication Date:


Levy’s new translation of the Man’yōshū makes available to us, on our own terms, as it were, one of the glories of Japanese poetry. His work is so well done, so right, so lacking in anything approaching affectation on the one hand or pedantry on the other that we will find the translation definitive.
—Donald Richie, The Japan Times

View full details

  • Shopping for someone else but not sure what to give them? Give them the gift of choice with a New York Review Books Gift Card.

    Gift Cards 
  • A membership for yourself or as a gift for a special reader will promise a year of good reading.

    Join NYRB Classics Book Club 
  • Is there a book that you’d like to see back in print, or that you think we should consider for one of our series? Let us know!

    Tell us about it