is a fictional character in the Naruto universe created by Masashi Kishimoto. Introduced in the first half of the manga, Jiraiya appears as a perverted old man who the lead character, Naruto Uzumaki, refers to as "Ero-Sennin". However, it is established that he was a student of the Hidden Leaf Village's Third Hokage, and one of the Three Legendary Sennin shinobi, along with Orochimaru and Lady Tsunade. Jiraiya starts off as comic relief but develops into a main character and acts as one of several father figure for Naruto. He is voiced by Hōchū Ōtsuka in the original Japanese airing of the anime, and by David Lodge in the English dubbing.
Jiraiya is named after the character of the same name from Jiraiya Goketsu Monogatari (児雷也豪傑物語, "The Tale of the Gallant Jiraiya"). The Jiraiya in this story excelled in summoning a giant toad (the toad itself was sometimes called "Jiraiya") and toad magic. There, his name is written as "児雷也" meaning "Young Thunder" which in turn comes from the name Garaiya (我来也, "I came") from the Chinese story Kaishi (諧史).
Jiraiya grew up in the village of Konohagakure under the tutelage of the Third Hokage. As he grew older Jiraiya and his two teammates, Orochimaru and Tsunade, collectively became known as the owing to their exemplary ninja abilities. The rank of sannin was given to them by the legendary Hanzou the Salamander after only the three of them survived Hanzou's powers out of battling a legion of Konoha Shinobi at Naruto Chapter 369. For most of his adult life, and thus many of his appearances in the series, Jiraiya periodically leaves his hometown to explore the Naruto world. Although he spends comparatively little time in Konoha (the leaf village), Jiraiya maintains deep loyalty to the village; soon after his introduction, he makes clear his intentions to kill Tsunade if she should ever turn against Konoha despite their history together. Throughout the series Jiraiya's talents and dedication to the village lead to him being offered the position of Hokage, Konoha's protector and leader. Because of his perceived weaknesses (his inability to keep Orochimaru from becoming a criminal and his failure to protect his teacher and his student from dying in their own tenure as Hokage) Jiraiya always declines the offer, feeling that he is unworthy of the responsibility.
During many of his appearances he makes at least one attempt to either woo women or spy on them while they bathe in the hot springs. While Jiraiya makes no attempt to hide these habits, going so far as to brag about his talents with voyeurism, he gets irritated whenever series protagonist Naruto Uzumaki affectionately calls him . His interest in women has on occasion been his downfall; sometime in the past he tried spying on Tsunade, and was nearly fatally wounded when she caught him in the act. However, he has been able to use his peeping jutsu to good use during reconnaissance and stealth missions, like his entrance into Pain's village Jiraiya's experiences in love, particularly those with Tsunade, are recorded in his series of novels. The books, a favorite of Kakashi Hatake, are runaway best-seller within the Naruto world and have earned Jiraiya vast wealth. Before penning the Make Out series Jiraiya published an "autobiography" where the main character was named "Naruto." Despite the book's poor sales Minato Namikaze, Jiraiya's student, named his son after the main character in the hopes that he would grow up to be just like the Naruto in the book, subsequently naming Jiraiya Naruto's godfather.
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Official Site: Shonen Jump
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