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Korea Jeonju, a city possessing one-thousand years of history

Jeonju, a city possessing one-thousand years of history Jeonju, a city where the old meets the new. Like an old craftsman, the city knows why it is important to respect and learn from history.

 

Jeonju, the city of ancient kings  

“Jeonju has a special place in my heart. It is where my ancestors settled and prospered. I have established a dynasty on our motherland that will bear our name. When I was a young man, I celebrated my victory on the battlefield with my clan at Omokdae in Jeonju.  It has been hundreds of years since then, but you can still feel my presence at historic sites scattered around Jeonju.  I am deeply moved that so many of my descendants remember Jeonju as Joseon’s true roots. Your visit here is the same as embracing the history of the Joseon Dynasty. I know you have come a long way. I wish you a pleasant and rewarding trip.

King Taejo of Joseon | The founder of Joseon Dynasty

 

Jeonju’s first step makes Korean history 

Jeonju, home of the Joseon Dynasty’s fabled Yi Clan.  It is a city with strong ties to kings and democratic movements.  Some of the greatest achievements in history took place here in Jeonju.

 

Up close and personal with the historic Joseon Dynasty 

Jeonju is the home of the Joseon Dynasty’s founder King Taejo, otherwise known as Yi Seong-gye and the Yi Clan. Gyeonggijeon Hall in Jeonju Hanok Village enshrines the great king’s portrait and is visited by thousands of people every day. Koreans and international tourists go there to pay their respect to the man who founded Korea’s last dynasty. After hundreds of years, descendants of the Yi Clan still live among us in cities and back home in Jeonju. Coming face to face with King Taejo’s portrait allows us to get in touch with Korean history. The determination in his eyes and commanding aura has defined what Korea is today.

 

The beautiful view from Omokdae 

Jeonju features layers and layers of gracefully curved blue tile roofs when seen from ‘Omokdae’. This is where Yi Seong-gye celebrated his victory at war before he became the founder of the Joseon Dynasty. The future king and his clan sang and drank to remember the dawn of a new dynasty. ‘Imokdae’, not too far from Omokdae, is said to be where King Taejo’s ancestors lived. Many of these historic sites have been converted to parks where residents and tourists come to unwind.

 

Memories that span over half a millennia 

History is an integral part of Jeonju, a city that embraces its culture and heritage. In autumn, a long procession follows the portrait of King Taejo in a memorial ceremony. The Joseonwangjosillok: The Annals of the Joseon Dynasty gets dusted off to be presented before the public. Sometimes, the remaining descendants of the storied Yi clan comes to the event at Seunggwangjae Garden in Jeonju Hanok Village. Jeonju never overlooks a page in its history; it still remembers the birth of a dynasty, reminds itself of the importance of documenting and preserving, and honors the descendants of kings. It is because the city remembers its role during the Joseon Dynasty and the importance of preserving it in spirit. The Joseon Dynasty’s 500-year history will continue to live on in historic its Jeonju.

 

A world where people matter 

History moves forward and thoughts progress. The Donghak Peasant Revolution shook the Joseon Dynasty at its roots and changed the track of Korea’s history. It opened up a new chapter that belonged to the people. The corruption and disputes among the ruling class were threatening the survival of the farmers during the late Joseon Dynasty. Instead of caving in, the peasants came together to protest with Jeon Bong-jun as their leader. The Donghak Peasant Revolution lasted a whole year and it was the first peasant-led revolution in the history of Korea. 120 years since the historic event, efforts are being made to reinterpret the revolution from a modern perspective. Their dream was to create a world where all people are equal and valued.