From my understanding, the 万葉集 is written in 万葉仮名 which uses a limited set of characters solely for their 音読み reading rather than for their semantic meaning.
In light of this, I am curious how difficult it is for a Native Japanese speaker to be able to read the 万葉集.
From the recent announcement of the Reiwa era being taken from the following passage:
I saw that it was also presented in modern Japanese as
Is the latter a large jump to the former for someone with a typical University level education that doesn't focus on literature such as this?
I was told by an acquaintance that a typical mainland Chinese person would be able to trivially read this passage of the 万葉集. Is this true? I have my doubts for the aforementioned reasons: I believe it uses the characters for their 音読み and should in principle not make sense when read without a Japanese vocabulary and I would expect that any language would have evolved from AD 759 so significantly that it should be difficult to read by anyone. That leads me to doubt that this cannot possibly be "trivial" for a Chinese person to be able to read.
Nevertheless, I am having a great deal of difficulty finding reasonable sources that support or deny the claim.