The Timeless 100

Fujiwara no Teika (1162-1241) was, by most accounts, a horrible bully. The Japanese nobleman lived through the country's violent transition from the Heian aristocratic era to the martial Kamakura shogunate, and was surly, severe and infamously ugly, as if malformed by the turbulence of his times. But as a poet and editor, Teika has transcended the ages. He compiled Japan's most influential and long-lasting anthology of poems: the Hyakunin Isshu (one hundred people, one poem each), also known as the Ogura Hyakunin Isshu . For more than seven centuries, these poems have resonated with countless readers....

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