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K-HISTORY

Meaningful Days of Korean History

  • 1996.10.21
    Anniversary
    Hanbok Day was designated in 1996 to arouse interest in hanbok and to promote its excellence and industrial and cultural value.

    Since 2014, the event has been hosted and supervised by the Hanbok Promotion Center under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Korea Craft Design and Culture Promotion Agency.

    Gyeongbokgung Palace, the center of Seoul and the symbol of the founding of the Joseon Dynasty, was used as a venue to promote the beauty of hanbok to the world and explore the possibility of hanbok as a tourist content.
  • 1335.10.27
    Taejo Lee Seong-gye's Birth Day
    Lee Seong-gye (October 27, 1335 (October 11, 1335) to June 18, 1408 (May 24, 1408) was the first king to be a shaman, politician, and founder of Joseon.

    Lee Seong-gye became famous for his distinguished military service in the war against Japanese pirates and the Red Turban Invasion of Korea at the end of the Goryeo Dynasty. The Yuihwado Rebellion eliminated King Wu and Choe Yeong and took political and military power in one hand.

    In conjunction with emerging political forces, the new Dynasty 'Joseon' was founded to replace Goryeo. He was reigned for seven years from 1392 to 1398, and was succeeded by King Jeongjong, the second king, in the wake of the prince's rebellion.
  • 1996.11.13
    Demolition date
    On November 13, 1996, the Government-General of Korea building was completely demolished.

    The Japanese Government-General's Office was completed in 1926 and was used as the U.S. Military Government Office and the Central Office after the liberation of Korea.

    It was used as the National Museum of Korea in the 1980s, but was demolished in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the liberation of Korea in 1995.
  • 2012.11.20
    Registration date
    Namdaemun Market, which started in 1414 when the Joseon Dynasty was the 14th year of King Taejong's reign, was established by the Namdaemun Market Merchants Association after Korea's liberation from Japan's colonial rule, and has been in the form of a corporation jointly invested by building owners and merchants in 1964, boasting a history of more than 600 years.

    The average number of visitors to Namdaemun Market, which has a traditional appearance, present and overflowing vitality, reaches 300,000 a day, with some 10,000 stores starting from Sungnyemun Gate.

    Geographically, it is the most popular attraction for foreigners visiting Seoul as it is located near major buildings in Seoul, including Shinsegae Department Store and the Bank of Korea, as well as tourist attractions such as Jeongdong-gil, Myeong-dong, Namsan Tower, and Namsan Hanok Village.
  • 1598.12.16
    Die in a war
    Yi Sun-sin (李舜臣, April 28, 1545 to December 16, 1598 (November 19, 1598) was a military official of the mid-Joseon Period who served as the governor of Jindo County and the commander of Jwa-do County in Jeolla Province.

    During the Japanese Invasion of Korea in 1592, he became the commander of the three provinces of Joseon and won consecutive naval battles with the Japanese naval forces due to his leadership, outstanding tactics, outstanding strategies and skillful tactics.

    On November 19, 1598 (Dec. 16, 1598), he took the lead in the Battle of Noryang and Gwaneumpo and was sadly hit by the enemy's stray bullet.

    Until the moment of his death, he quietly closed his eyes, saying, "The fight is urgent, so refrain from saying that I am dead."

    Admiral Yi Sun-sin is revered as a saint who saved Joseon from a crisis.
  • 1962.12.20
    designated date of national treasure
    It was also called Namdaemun because it was located in the south of the main gate of Hanyangdoseong during the Joseon Dynasty. It was built in 1396 (the 7th year of King Taejo's reign) and was the oldest wooden building in Seoul.

    The building was rebuilt in 1448 (the 30th year of King Sejong's reign), and it was discovered that there was a big construction in the 10th year of King Seongjong's reign (1479) during the dismantling and repair of the building between 1961 and 1963.

    Later, on February 10, 2008, the fire at Sungnyemun destroyed the roof of the second floor of the pavilion and partially destroyed the roof of the first floor. After five years and two months of restoration work, it was completed on May 4, 2013 and opened to the public.

    This gate is a two-story building with a two-story square measuring 5 bays in front space and 2 bays in side space, with a rainbow-shaped gate in the middle of the stone pillars. The roof has a trapezoidal shape when viewed from the front, which is called the Woojingak roof. The multi-layered structure, which is decorated on the upper part of the pillars to support the eaves of the roof, is not only on top of the pillars but also between the pillars, and the composition is not too severe and is well-organized, showing the characteristics of the early Joseon Dynasty.

    It is said that Yangnyeongdaegun wrote the Hyeonpan, which reads "Sungnyemun," in the book "Jibong Yuseol." It is the oldest wooden structure in Seoul that shows the exact date of construction.

    ᄋ Sungnyemun's fire-fighting fire(2008.2.10)

    - The 2008 Sungnyemun arson attack was a case in which the Sungnyemun building was burnt down from February 10 to February 11, 2008. The fire broke out around 8:40 p.m. on February 10, 2008, and the second floor of Sungnyemun collapsed around 0:40 a.m. on February 11, 2008, followed by a fire on the first floor, damaging buildings except stone pillars at 1:55 a.m., five hours after the fire.
  • 2009.12.21
    a date designated as a historical site
    Bulguksa Temple is a temple belonging to the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism on Mount Toham in the east of Gyeongju, North Gyeongsang Province. It was reconstructed on a large scale during the reign of King Gyeongdeok of Silla and King Hyegong of Silla.

    Since the Silla Dynasty, it has been contracted several times from Goryeo to the Joseon Dynasty, and was burned down during the Japanese Invasion of Korea in 1592. It is the headquarters of the 11th Diocese of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism and was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995.
  • 2020.1.1
    the day of sacrificial rites
    Jongmyo Shrine, located in Jongno-gu, Seoul, is where the ancestral tablets of kings and queens of the Joseon Dynasty were held.

    It is a cultural heritage that shows the royal ritual culture, a Confucian tradition of the Joseon Dynasty, and the spatial planning method is very unique and in excellent state of preservation.

    It was built and maintained in the late 14th century, but was destroyed during the Japanese Invasion of Korea in the early 17th century, and was later added to the current state as needed.

    Jongmyo Shrine is also a World Heritage Site, but Jongmyo Jerye and Jongmyo Jeryeak, which are held in Jongmyo Shrine, are also registered as intangible assets.
  • 1963.1.18
    designated date
    Changdeokgung Palace was the second royal villa built following the construction of Gyeongbokgung Palace in 1405. It was the principal palace for many kings of the Joseon Dynasty, and is the most well-preserved of the five remaining royal Joseon palaces. The palace grounds are comprised of a public palace area, a royal family residence building, and the rear garden. Known as a place of rest for the kings, the rear garden boasts a gigantic tree that is over 300 years old, a small pond and a pavilion.

    The palace gained importance starting from the time of Seongjong, the 9th king of Joseon, when a number of kings began using it as a place of residence. Unfortunately, the palace was burned down by angry citizens in 1592 when the royal family fled their abode during the Japanese invasion of Korea. Thanks to Gwanghaegun, the palace was restored in 1611. Even today, it houses a number of cultural treasures, such as Injeongjeon Hall, Daejojeon Hall, Seonjeongjeon Hall, and Nakseonjae Hall.

    Changdeokgung Palace’s garden behind the inner hall, called the Secret Garden, was constructed during the reign of King Taejong and served as a resting place for the royal family members. The garden had formerly been called Bugwon and Geumwon, but was renamed Biwon Garden after King Gojong came into power. The garden was kept as natural as possible and was touched by human hands only when absolutely necessary. Buyongjeong Pavilion, Buyongji Pond, Juhamnu Pavilion, Eosumun Gate, Yeonghwadang Hall, Bullomun Gate, Aeryeonjeong Pavilion, and Yeongyeongdang Hall are some of the many attractions that occupy the garden. The most beautiful time to see the garden is during the fall when the autumn foliage is at its peak and the leaves have just started to fall.

    Though it has been treasured by Koreans for centuries, Changdeokgung Palace was recognized as a World Cultural Heritage site by the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Committee in December of 1997 during the committee meeting in Naples, Italy.
  • 1963.1.18
    designated date
    Deoksugung Palace is unique among Korean palaces in having a modern seal engraving and a western style garden and fountain. Medieval and modern style architecture exists together in harmony in Deoksugung Palace. The Changing of the Royal Guard can be seen in front of Daehanmun (Gate) and is a very popular event for many visitors. During the Joseon Dynasty, the royal guard was responsible for opening and closing the palace gate as well as patrolling around the gate area. Outside the palace is a picturesque road flanked by a stone wall which is much loved by visitors.

    Originally, Deoksugung Palace was not a palace. The Imjin War (the Japanese invasions in 1592) left all the palaces in Korea severely damaged. When King Seonjo (the fourteenth king of the Joseon Dynasty) returned to Seoul from his evacuation, the primary palace Gyeongbokgung Palace had been burnt to the ground and other palaces were also heavily damaged. A temporary palace was chosen from among the houses of the royal family. This is the origin of Deoksugung Palace. King Gwanghaegun (the fifteenth king of the Joseon Dynasty) named the palace Gyeongungung, formalizing it as a royal palace. Since then it has been used as an auxiliary palace by many Joseon kings. In 1897, Emperor Gojong (the twenty-sixth king of the Joseon Dynasty) stayed here and expanded it. The modern buildings such as Seokjojeon (Hall) were constructed during this period. In 1907, the palace was renamed Deoksugung.
  • 1963.1.21
    a date designated as a historical site
    Built in 1395, Gyeongbokgung Palace is also commonly referred to as the Northern Palace because its location is furthest north when compared to the neighboring palaces of Changdeokgung (Eastern Palace) and Gyeonghuigung (Western Palace) Palace. Gyeongbokgung Palace is arguably the most beautiful, and remains the largest of all five palaces.

    The premises were once destroyed by fire during the Imjin War (1592-1598). However, all of the palace buildings were later restored under the leadership of Heungseondaewongun during the reign of King Gojong (1852-1919).

    Remarkably, the most representative edifices of the Joseon Dynasty, Gyeonghoeru Pavilion and the pond around Hyangwonjeong Pavillion have remained relatively intact. The raised dias and stone markers of Geunjeongjeon showcase the representative art style of their time.

    The National Palace Museum of Korea is located south of Heungnyemun Gate, and the National Folk Museum is located on the eastern side of Hyangwonjeong Pavillion.
  • 1963.1.21
    designated date
    Hwaseong Fortress, designated as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site on December 12, 1997, has deep history protecting the capital from outside attack. Hwaseong Fortress offers various performances daily as well as Suwon Hwaseong Cultural Festival every fall. The fortress circles Paldalsan Mountain at the center for 5.7 kilometers long. The fortress, constructed from 1794 to 1796, was built as a display of King Jeongjo’s filial piety towards his father and to build a new pioneer city with its own economic power.
  • 1963.1.21
    designated date of treasure
    Bosingak Belfry was used during the Joseon Dynasty to keep the time. The bell would ring 33 times at 4 AM, signaling the start of the day and the opening of the city gates. At 10 PM, the bell would ring 28 and the gates would close for the night. The bell was originally installed at Wongaksa Temple in 1468, in the 13th year of King Sejo, but was moved to its current location in 1619. The bell has high cultural value due to the exact year of construction being known, allowing historians to accurately date artifacts from the same time period. The original bell, National Treasure No. 2, is preserved in the National Museum of Korea.

    Tourists to Jongno-gu and locals alike can enjoy a living history through the bell-ringing ceremony that takes place for one hour every day (excluding Mondays), starting at 11:20. In addition, Bosingak Belfry is the location of Korea's very own "ball drop ceremony" on December 31. On this evening, the streets surrounding the belfry are closed to traffic and people gather to ring in the New Year with the striking of the bell.
  • 1991.1.25
    designated date of national treasure
    Joseon Baekja is the most widely known pottery in Korea, along with Goryeo Cheongja(celadon porcelain).

    Baekja(White porcelain) and Buncheongsagi(powdered blueware) are representative ceramics of Korea. Baekja was continuously produced and used throughout the Joseon Dynasty, while Buncheongsagi were produced for 150 years.

    The white porcelain, which shows the beauty of purity and moderation, was used by new Dynasty and the noblity who pursued Confucian philosophy, so it contains their thoughts and preferences.

    The Baekja of National Treasure No. 258 is considered one of the most representative white porcelain bottles of the time in a state in which the bold and tasteful pictures of bamboo show the spirit of the Sunbi people at that time.
  • 1967.3.18
    Specified date
    This is where Chungmugong Yi Sun-sin lived until he passed the state examination for the military service, and is now Hyeonchungsa Shrine.

    Major facilities include Hyeonchungsa, where Yi Sun-sin's portrait was enshrined, an old house where Yi Sun-sin grew up, a hwalter where he practiced martial arts while shooting arrows, a main gate, Hongsalmun, and a tomb behind his third son.

    Various artifacts related to Admiral Yi Sun-shin and the Japanese Invasion of Korea in the exhibition hall are on display, and lectures and seminars are being held at the education hall to promote Admiral Yi Sun-shin's spirit and feat.