According to the Naruto Wiki page on Jiraiya, he

"left Konoha so he could follow Orochimaru's movements, as well as those of "Akatsuki", an organization which Orochimaru had eventually joined."

Orochimaru was at Konoha during the Chuunin Exam Arc, making his first appearance (as far as I remember) during the second phase (in the Forest of Death).
Jiraiya made his first appearance between the preliminaries and the finals (in chapter 90).
There is a fairly short period of time between these two appearances.

We quickly see that Jiraiya knows who Naruto is, as he is trying to control his chakra to walk on water (in chapter 91). He first notices something when he sees Naruto trying to walk on water:
Chapter 91, page 10
We then have a full confirmation that he knows who he is:
Chapter 91, page 12
In this chapter he also notices that there is some weird overlaying of seals, which he deduces was Orochimaru's work.

Now, my question is:
Did Naruto and Jiraiya meet by chance, as Jiraiya was tracking down Orochimaru's movements? (in which case Jiraiya only knew who Naruto was after seeing the seal in his stomach)
Or did he know who Naruto was before having seen him trying to walk on water, and tracked him down? (possibly to protect him from Orochimaru, and in which case he would've been watching over Naruto since his parents died)

  • I personally don't think Jiraiya knew who Naruto was, as I don't see anywhere in the manga/ anime wherein Jiraiya gets to know a child survived and acted as a vessel for the nine-tails. It was told in the anime that Jiraiya was away from the village for many years. So when, when he started training Naruto, he got to know that "Naruto" was the Fourth's son.
    – user264
    Dec 24, 2012 at 5:44
  • you are ill informed dude
    – MozenRath
    Dec 28, 2012 at 18:29
  • 3
    @debal As you may know, people don't have to accept answers. See this post. And I don't think the answers are "good enough", so accepting one answer here could prevent other users from providing a better answer. Nothing personal, I just don't feel like the question has been answered. :)
    – JNat
    Jul 30, 2013 at 9:13
  • @Sandy please refer to my answer.
    – debal
    Aug 5, 2013 at 3:02

4 Answers 4


It probably depends on how far you are with the series:

Jiraya knew who Naruto was from the beginning, Minato talked with Jiraya and made him his godfather, he also told Jiraya they are going to name him Naruto. So he knew about Naruto and watched over him from birth and started training him later on.

  1. They didn't meet by chance, he already knew about Naruto and the seal, he knew about the 4th's seal, that's how he knew it had been tampered with by Orochimaru.

  2. I think this is the case, Jiraya said he was getting research for his book, but I think Jiraya, being his godfather, tracked him down to begin his training.

  • I know that he knew who Naruto was, my doubt is whether he knew that that boy was Naruto or if he just knew once he saw the seal (shown in the manga above).
    – JNat
    Dec 23, 2012 at 10:49
  • As he was really close to Minato he probably recognized the seal that was the speciality to the family of Naruto's mother( forgot her name ). He probably recognized him that way, He might have been able to recognize him as he did see Naruto at birth ( and if you are further on in the series) you would notice his face from then and now don't differ that much
    – Dimitri mx
    Feb 13, 2013 at 15:46
  • @Dimitrimx her names kushina btw Aug 20, 2021 at 13:21

Something that most of the answers have missed is Jiriya was the keeper of the key to the seal that was used to seal the nine tailed fox. So he has to know about Naruto being the Jinchuriki.

Next point is, the name "Naruto" is actually the name of the character that Jiraya created in his first book. In later episodes it is shown that Minato decided that he too would name his child as Naruto, and Jiraya comments that, that makes him the godfather to the child.

Now, had Jiraya known Naruto by name and face is just speculation, as no substantial information has been provided in this matter, but he is sure to have recognised who this "Naruto" is once Naruto mentions his name to him. Furthermore, once he sees the seal on Naruto's stomach (the key of which lock lies with him) there shouldn't be any more doubts for him.


Jiraiya knew Naruto's parents, well actually he knew the whole backstory. So, he would have definitely known that Naruto is the 'nine tails' from start. He didn't come forward because Naruto was not ready. As we see, the first time they meet, Jiraiya was acting like he didn't care about Naruto, but right after commits to train him.


Jiraiya should have already known who Naruto was because he knew Minato (4th hokage). Naruto and his dad Minato look so much alike, as Jiraiya said himself in one of the episodes, so he probably was acting as if he didn't know Naruto. Plus, Minato asked Jiraiya if he could name his son Naruto after the character in the book Jiraiya wrote ("tales of a gutsy ninja").

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