Opening with the most famous introductory lines in Japanese literature, The Three Cornered World has been cherished by generations of readers as a glittering jewel in the crown of Soseki s artistic achievement. A painter escapes to a mountain spa to work in a world free of emotional entanglement, but finds himself fascinated by the alluring mistress at his inn and, inspired by thoughts of Millais Ophelia, he imagines painting her. The woman is rumoured to have abandoned her husband and fallen in love with a priest at a nearby temple, but somehow the right expression for the face on her painting eludes the artist . . . Beautifully written, humorous and filled with bitter-sweet reflections on the human condition, The Three Cornered World was intended as a unique haiku-novel with a mood utterly different to anything ever produced in the West. Demonstrating along the way a mastery of everything from Western painting to Chinese literature, Soseki succeeded in an artistic tour-de-force that produced what legendary recording artist Glenn Gould would simply refer to as his favourite book .