The Tales of Ise is a collection of waka poems and associated narratives, dating from the Heian period. The current version collects 125 sections, with each combining poems and prose, giving a total of 209 poems in most versions. The exact date of composition and authorship can only be speculated; the identity of the nameless, idealised central character is likewise ambiguous, but suggested to be Ariwara no Narihira (825-880). The combination of these poems, and the similarity of some events in the tales to Narihira's life, have led to the additional suggestion that Narihira actually composed the work; however, the inclusion of material and events dating after 880 suggests otherwise.
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