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Kintaro and Demon

Kintaro (金太郎, often translated as "Golden Boy") is a folk hero from Japanese folklore. A child of superhuman strength, he was raised by a yama-uba ("mountain witch") on Mount Ashigara. Even as a toddler, Kintaro was active and untiring, plump and ruddy, wearing only a bib with the kanji for "gold" (金) on it. His only other accoutrement was a hatchet (ono or masakari). His friends were mainly the animals of Mt. Kintoki and Mt. Ashigara. He was also phenomenally strong, able to smash rocks into pieces, uproot trees, and bend trunks like twigs. His animal friends served him as messengers and mounts, and some legends say that he even learned to speak their language. Several tales tell of Kintaro's adventures, fighting monsters and oni (demons), beating bears in sumo wrestling, and helping the local woodcutters fell trees.

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