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Korean Historical Figures

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34 facts:

Ahn Jung-geun
Was the Independence Fighter Who Assassinated Ito Hirobumi
Was the Last Buddhist King of the Dynasty
Joseon Dynasty
Handed Control of Korea to the Japanese
Joseon Dynasty. Better political choices could have prevented or postponed occupation.
Hid in the Russian Embassy
Joseon Dynasty. For almost a year!
Ate Poisoned Crabs (and Died)
Joseon Dynasty. He reigned less than four years. But he'd always been sick, so who knows if the crabs existed, or were poisoned.
Became King Because His Father Poisoned His Elder Brother
Joseon Dynasty
Was the Monk Who Wrote the Samguk Yusa
One of Korea’s earliest extant books, it contains myths as well as historically verifiable facts.
Jeong Mongju
Was the Scholar Who Was Responsible for the Joseon Dynasty Adopting Neo-Confucianism
Lived from 1337-1392. By finding fault with the Buddhist monks the first Joseon king, Taejo, could find a justification for usurping power from the king. He was "restoring morality."
Was the Founder of the Dominant Jogye Order of Buddhism
Lived from 1158-1210
Kim Yushin
Was Credited As Korea’s Greatest Military Strategist
Lived from 595-673
King Beopheung
Was the First Shilla Kingdom King to Adopt Buddhism
He and a monk arranged an awesome spectacle that convinced the court that Buddhism was the way to go.
King Gwanggaeto
Expanded Goguryeo’s Boundaries Far Into China
Ruled from 391-413. Today China sometimes tries to argue that Goguryeo was a Chinese kingdom. If so, why did they have to fight other Chinese groups to expand northward?
King Gwangjong
Established Goryeo’s Hereditary Aristocracy
Ruled from 949-975
King Kim Chun-chu
Was the Mastermind for the First Unification of the Korean Peninsula
King Seong
Co-operated With Goguryeo Against Shilla
Ruled 523-554
King Shinmun
Firmly Established the Authority of the Unified Shilla Throne
Ruled from 681-692
King Wang Geon
Was the Founder and First King of the Goryeo Dynasty
Killed His Nephews
Joseon Dynasty. Although he attained power through bloodshed, he reigned very competently.
Expanded Korea’s Northern Boundary
Joseon Dynasty. This farthest boundary is almost identical with the line between North Korea and China today.
Invented the Korean Alphabet
Joseon Dynasty. New research is showing that he directly had an active hand in the invention and didn't rely much on courtiers.
Retired to Become a Monk
Joseon Dynasty. Even though he reigned as a Neo-Confucian monarch.
Shin Saimdang
Was the Mother of Yi Yi, This Woman Was a Noted Painter, Poet and Calligrapher
Yi Yi was a famous Confucian scholar.
Was Mentally Retarded
Joseon Dynasty. He was also a perfect puppet for the Japanese who forced his father out.
Began the Repression of Buddhism, Advocated Neo-Confucianism
Joseon Dynasty
Founded the Joseon Dynasty
Taejo is the name he was given after death. The same name was given the founder of the Goryeo Dynasty.
Created the Basic Administrative Structure for the Dynasty
Joseon Dynasty
Was the Monk Who Drank Water from a Skull, Seeing It, He Attained Enlightenment
Lived from 617-684
Ordered His Son to Commit Suicide
Joseon Dynasty. The son was ordered to climb into a chest for storing rice. It was nailed shut and he died 8 days later.
Reigned the Longest
Joseon Dynasty
Killed Hundreds of Literati Courtiers
Joseon Dynasty. His nuttiness made him the key character in the movie "King and the Clown", one of Korea's biggest ever hits.
Yi Hwang
Was Otherwise Known As Toegye, Founder of Andong’s Seosan Seowon
A famous Neo-Confucian thinker
Yi Sunshin
Was the Famous General of the Turtle-ships
Lived from 1545-1598. Died in the last engagement, but ordered his officers not to let anyone know in order to keep morale up.
Yi Yi
Was the Advocate of Gi over Yi
A famous Neo-Confucian thinker
Yu Gwan-sun
Was Known As Korea’s Joan of Arc
She was beaten, tortured and stabbed until dead in a Japanese prison, she was 17

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