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Murasaki Shikibu (紫式部, English: Lady Murasaki) (c. 973 or 978 – c. 1014 or 1031) was a Japanese novelist, poet and lady-in-waiting at the Imperial court during the Heian period. She is best known as the author of The Tale of Genji, written in Japanese between about 1000 and 1012. Murasaki Shikibu is a nickname; her real name is unknown, but she may have been Fujiwara Takako, who was mentioned in a 1007 court diary as an imperial lady-in-waiting, the names of women were not recorded in the Heian era.
Three works are attributed to Murasaki: The Tale of Genji, The Diary of Lady Murasaki and Poetic Memoirs, a collection of 128 poems.
“The Diary of Murasaki Shikibu” (紫式部日記 Murasaki Shikibu Nikki) is the title of fragments of a diary written by the 11th-century Japanese Heian era lady-in-waiting and writer Murasaki Shikibu, author of The Tale of Genji. Probably written between 1008 and 1010, when Murasaki was in service at the imperial court, the largest portion of the diary chronicles the birth of Empress Shōshi's (Akiko) children.
In 1920, Annie Shepley Omori and Kochi Doi published “Diaries of Court Ladies of Old Japan”; this book combined their translation of Murasaki's diary with Izumi Shikibu's (和泉式部日記 The Izumi Shikibu Nikki) and with the Sarashina Diary (更級日記Sarashina Nikki). Their translation had an introduction by Amy Lowell. So, Let's read and enjoy!