I know it has to deal with something about books or some type of writing, but when I looked it up, all that came up were scrolls and cheat sheets of some sort. I'm guessing it's something "___ for dummies" or maybe even a "crash course?" Also, if it's published, is it more like a scroll or a book format?

1 Answer 1


According to デジタル大辞泉, 虎{とら}の巻{まき} has three meanings.

  1. 兵法の秘伝書。Book of war strategy secrets. (Original meaning)
  2. 芸道などの秘事・秘伝を記した書。A document that covers secrets of an art or skill. (First figurative use)
  3. 講義などの種本。また、教科書にある、問題の解答などが書いてある参考書。あんちょこ。とらかん。Book that lectures are based on. Also, a reference document for textbook question answers (especially something that's easy to understand). Crib notes or cheat sheet. Alternative words: 「あんちょこ」、「とらかん」

So in a school setting, the third definition is probably the correct one. First one is only needed in history or fantasy settings. Not sure if the second one gets any use nowadays when you talk about "tricks of the trade" or such.

Your "for dummies" matches definition 3. Not sure about crash course.

The kanji 巻 here doesn't refer to a scroll in definition 2 or 3, they are just figurative use of the first definition.

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