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‘Hungukdeungrok’ reveals soldiers’ lives in Joseon Dynasty

‘Hungukdeungrok’ reveals soldiers’ lives in Joseon Dynasty

Posted March. 07, 2018 07:56,   

Updated March. 07, 2018 07:56


During the Japanese invasions of Korea in the late 16th Century, a military camp was created to defend the capital city of Seoul, and it maintained around 5,000 soldiers from the late 17th Century to the 19th Century. Then where would they have trained themselves? It was usually at a sand pool near Noryangjin or at a wide-open space near Seodaemun that they gathered three times a month to exercise battle formation.

These are some of the stories included in “Hungukdeungrok,” the transcription of records sent and received by the military camp in Seoul for around 300 years during the late Joseon Dynasty. Recently, the Academy of Korean Studies published “Hungukdeungrok with translation and annotation” Volume I and II, and two other books that explain in plain language the daily lives and stories of the military during the Joseon Dynasty.

The Academy of Korean Studies is planning to complete the series of “Hungukdeungrok” with 20 volumes. “We currently own 569 books made by the central military camp, which was responsible for guarding a king and defending a palace and the capital during the Joseon period,” the academy said. “These are precious materials that allow us to look into people’s lives and the society during the late Joseon Dynasty.”

Jong-Yeob JO jjj@donga.com