Joseonmal Keunsajeon (Dictionary)

On September 8, 1945, a lost treasure was found in a storage at Seoul Station. It was the manuscript of Joseonmal Keunsajeon (The Comprehensive Korean Language Dictionary) that had been lost since its confiscation by police during the Japanese Occupation Period (1910-1945). The manuscript consisted of 26,500 pages. After two years of sorting and editing,…

Geumgang Jeondo (Painting of Mt. Geumgang)

“Looking at my painting of Mt. Geumgang will give a better sense of the mountain than hiking it on your own feet.” – From Geumgang Jeondo by Jeong Seon Jeong Seon (1676-1759), one of the most respected painters during Joseon, expressed his confidence in his painting. Geumgang Jeondo, a Korean-brush painting of Mt. Geumgang on…

Chiljeongsan (calendar system)

Every day, the King and crown prince discussed a native calendar system with Jeong Cho and other officials at the Ganuidae royal observatory – A record of August 11, 1433, from the Sejong Sillok Chiljeongsan is the Korean native calendar system created in 1443, the 15th year of King Sejong’s reign, during Joseon. Chiljeong in…

Cheonsang Yeolcha Bunyajido (star map)

Korea has the world’s second-oldest existing astronomical chart. In 1395 during early Joseon (1392-1910), Cheonsang Yeolcha Bunyajido (star map) was created. The map was carved on a flat black stone of 122cm width and 211cm height. A total of 1,467 stars are engraved on it. Nearly all the constellations visible to the naked eye in…

Goryeo’s Naval Gun

When was the world’s first naval gun battle? Naval artillery battles have a significant meaning in history because the emergence of naval power shifted power from Asia to Europe. European naval fleets armed with powerful artillery dominated the sea, enabling European countries to take power. Many believe that the Battle of Lepanto in 1571 between…

Seokguram

Seokguram is an artificial Buddhist grotto on the slopes of Mount Toham in Gyeongju. Its construction was started in 751 under the supervision of Silla’s prime minister Kim Daeseong and completed in 774. It was originally called Seokbulsa temple. Unlike the natural cave temples commonly found in China and India, Seokguram is an artificial cave…

Divine Bell of King Seongdeok

“This bell is the best bell in the world. If Germany had a bell like this, it would suffice to build a museum.” – Dr. Otto Kümmel, German archeologist The Divine Bell of King Seongdeok is a large bronze bell made to honor King Seongdeok of Silla (57 BC – AD 935). It is the…

Tomb of King Muryeong

In July 1971, there was an astonishing discovery in the town of Songsanri in Gongju of Chungcheongnamdo Province. During repair work on another tomb’ drainage system, the tomb of Baekje’s King Muryeong (reign 501 ~ 523) was found. Memorial tablets at the entrance indicated that the tomb was built for King Muryeong and his queen.…