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Samguk Yusa Vol. 4 and 5 become national treasures

Posted August. 28, 2020 07:58,   

Updated August. 28, 2020 07:58


The oldest existing copy of "Samguk Yusa," which is referred to as the Beomeo Temple edition, was elevated from its previous "treasure" status to national treasure.

The Cultural Heritage Administration (CHA) announced on Wednesday that the fourth and fifth volumes of “Samguk Yusa,” which were previously registered as Treasure No. 419-3, is now recognized as National Treasure No. 306-4.

The Beomeo Temple in Busan currently owns only the fourth and fifth volumes of “Samguk Yusa,” which were originally composed of five volumes. They were originally owned by Oh Seong-wol, the first chief monk of the temple, and later donated to the temple in 197. The book was written by Buddhist monk Iryeon during the Goryeo period, yet the original edition of the period has remained unknown. The Beomeo Temple edition is recognized for its historical importance as it contained chapters 28 to 30, which are missing in the National Treasure No. 306 Songeun edition (vol. 3 to 5) and the National Treasure No. 306-3 Pareun edition (vol. 1 and 2).

In addition, the “Drawings of Jang Yong Yeong Headquarters,” which depict the headquarters of the royal bodyguards called Jang Yong Yeong introduced to strengthen the power of King Jeongjo of Joseon, was registered as Treasure No. 2070. They consist of one colored drawing and two floor plans named “Gangado.” Moreover, eight historical monuments, including “Stone Maitreya Buddha Triad” known as baby Buddhas in Namsan, Gyeongju, were newly designated as treasures.

Min Kim kimmin@donga.com