Agemaki (Genji Monogatari (The Tale of Genji)) (総角 (源氏物語))

Agemaki is the name of one of the fifty-four chapters of "Genji Monogatari." It is the forty-seventh chapter. It is the third chapter of 'Uji jujo' (The Ten Quires of Uji), which is a part of the third section.
The title of this chapter was derived from the waka poem, which Kaoru made for Oigimi (oldest daughter of Hachi no miya) at a memorial service on the first anniversary of the death of her father: 'I hope that we will stay together for long just like these trefoil knots which you tie.'

It is a story which covers from August in fall to December in winter when Kaoru was 24 years old.

In August in fall, a Buddhist memorial service for the first anniversary of Uji Hachi no miya (the Eighth Prince) was performed, and Kaoru took care of various things. On that night, Kaoru approached Oigimi and confessed his love, but she refused him, and after they talked all night long, they parted. Oigimi had decided to become celibate for good as a master of the Uji residence, following her late father's will, but, on the other hand, she was planning to marry her younger sister, Naka no kimi, to Kaoru. Because the clothes of Oigimi gave off strong scent of Kaoru, Naka no kimi doubted the relationship between them.

Shortly after the memorial service for the first anniversary, Kaoru, who visited Uji, entered Oigimi's bedroom with the help of old maids such as Ben (a name of character), who wished for her marriage. However, Oigimi noticed right away, and went out of sight, leaving Naka no kimi alone. Kaoru noticed Naka no kimi left behind, and stayed up all night talking with her.

Kaoru, who knew Oigimi's intention, thought of marrying Naka no kimi to Nioumiya. One night in September, he brought Nioumiya secretly to Uji, and made him see her. Kaoru told the truth to Oigimi, and urged her to marry him, but she did not accept it. Nioumiya kept visiting Naka no kimi for three days, but after that he could not visit Uji as he liked due to his social status. Nioumiya stopped visiting Uji, so Oigimi and Naka no kimi wailed about it. In October, Nioumiya planned to go boating on the Yodo-gawa River and arranged an excursion to view the autumn leaves in order to see Naka no kimi. However, many people came and the gathering became too splendid, so he could not achieve his aim. Kinjo no Mikado decided to marry Nioumiya to Roku no kimi, a daughter of Yugiri, in order to stop his trip.

Oigimi, who heard this, fell sick in bed as a result of excessive anxiety. In November, despite Kaoru's care lavished on her, she passed away with Kaoru at her side as if plants and trees had died off. She was twenty-six years old. It was the day of Toyoakari no sechie (one of the ceremonies at a seasonal holiday), and a snowstorm rages in Uji at night.

Kaoru, who could not marry Oigimi, grieved deeply, and secluded himself in Uji to be in mourning. Nioumiya decided to take Naka no kimi to the Nijoin (name of residence) in Kyoto.

[Original Japanese]