Sources: Yu Deukgong’s “Nostalgic Reflections of the Twenty-One Capitals” 二十一都懷古詩 (1792) – part 6 of 6

See Introductionpart 1part 2part 3, part 4 and part 5.

高麗  Goryeo

In the Wudaishi (History of the Five Dynasties 五代史) it is written, “In the 3rd Changxing (長興 930-3) year of Later Tang emperor Mingzong (明宗), emissaries came sent from the Goryeo gwonjiguksa (權知國事, a title used before rulers were ‘enfeoffed’ by Chinese emperors) Wang Geon (王建). Mingzong appointed Wang Geon as high magistrate of Hyeondo-ju (玄菟州), supplied (充) him with dayi-junshi military messengers (大義軍使) and enfeoffed him as king of Goryeo-guk.”

In the Goryeo-sa (高麗史) it is written, “The surname of Divine and Sagacious Great King Taejo (太祖神聖大王) was Wang (王) and his first name Geon (建). His style name (字) was Yakcheon (若天) and he was from Song’ak-gun (松岳郡). When the administration of Silla began to decline, Gung-ye (弓裔) took control of the former territory of Goguryeo and, establishing his capital at Cheorwon (鐵原), named the country Taebong (泰封). Taejo (太祖 ie Wang Geon) was received as jeonggi-daegam (精騎大監) and owing to his many deeds accumulated further ranks becoming both pajinchang (波珍澯) and sijung (侍中). In the 4th Zhenming (貞明 정명 915-20) year of Later Liang (後粱 후량), gijang marshalls (騎將) Hong Yu (洪儒), Bae Hyeon-Gyeong (裵玄慶 d.936), Sin Sung-gyeom (申崇謙 d.927) and Bok Ji-gyeom (卜智謙) met in secret and inaugurated [Wang Geon as king]. They called the country Goryeo and revised the era name (年號) to Cheonsu (天授 ‘receiving heaven’). In the 2nd year of Taejo’s reign they established the capital to the south of Mount Song’ak (松岳山).”

In the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考) it is written, “Gaeseong-bu (開城府) is the former capital of Goryeo-guk.”

35
荒凉二十八王陵  황량이십팔왕릉  平平去入入平平(蒸)
風雨年年暗漆燈  풍우년년암칠등  平上平平去入平
進鳳山中紅躑躅  진봉산중홍척촉  去去平平平
春來猶自發層層  춘래유자발층층  平平平去入平平

hwang ryang i sip pal wang reung
pung u nyeon nyeon am chil deung
jin bong san jung hong cheok chok
chun rae yu ja bal cheung cheung

The twenty-eight royal burial mounds [stand] forlorn and desolate.
[Weathered by] wind and rain year upon year, the lacquer lamps [a term for graves n.116] grow dim.
[Yet] the red royal azaleas at Mount Jinbong
In spring will spontaneously bloom layer upon layer.

the twenty-eight royal burial mounds (二十八王陵): according to the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考), “Starting with Goryeo Taejo (太祖), there are twenty-eight royal tombs located in Gaeseong-bu around Mount Song’ak (松岳山), Mount Jinbong (進鳳山), Byeokgot-dong (碧串洞 벽곶동) and Mount Bongmyeong (鳳鳴山).”

the royal azaleas at Mount Jinbong (進鳳躑躅): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Mount Jinbong is nine li to the east of Gaeseong-bu. Many azaleas (杜鵑花 두견화) bloom there so they are known as Jinbong azaleas (進鳳躑躅).”

36
鳳輦逶遲降帝姬  봉연위지강제희  去上 平去去平(支)
春寒氈帳祓羊脂  춘한전장불양지  平平平去平平平
浮生白眼應難較  부생백안응난교  平平入上平平去
紅淚先沾勺藥枝  홍누선첨작약지  平去平平入入平

bong yeon wi ji gang je hwi
chun han jeon jang bul yang ji
bu saeng baek an eung nan gyo
hong nu seon cheom jak yak ji

The emperor’s daughter slowly travels down [from the Yuan capital Beijing] in the Phoenix [i.e. royal] palanquin.
In the spring cold, [her] ger tent [has already been] erected and an exorcism performed with sheep fat.
In this fleeting life it is difficult to vie with white eyes;
Red tears fell first on the peony branch.

the emperor’s daughter (帝姬): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “King Chungnyeol’s (忠烈王) queen (后) was the Great Princess of Qi [aka the Mongol Empire] (齊國大長公主 1259-97 n.117). Her [Mongol] name [in Korean] was Holdo’rogerimisil (忽都魯揭里迷失) and she was the daughter of Yuan Shizu (元世祖 aka Kublai Khan). In the 15th year of King Wonjong’s (元宗 r.1259–1274) reign, King Chungnyeol whilst [residing as] a crown prince in Yuan, married the princess.”

an exorcism performed with sheep fat (祓禳脂 불양지): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “When King Chungnyeol ascended to the throne and returned to the east [ie to Goryeo] with the princess, they entered the capital [Gaeseong] together on a palanquin (輦) and the older men of the capital congratulated one another. The emperor had sent Tuohu (脫忽) to [serve] the princess and, arriving first he set up a ger tent (穹廬 궁려 n.118) and performed an exorcism (祓) using white sheep fat.”

white eyes (白眼): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “After the princess gave birth to a boy a feast was held during which Palace Madam, Queen Jeonghwa (貞和宮主 d.1319, Chungnyeol’s first Korean queen n.119), poured wine [for the princess] to congratulate [her]. When the king looked back at the princess, the princess said, ‘How can you look at me with white eyes? Is it because the Palace Madam (宮主) has knelt [before] me?’ So saying [she] ordered the banquet to stop and descending from the palace building cried bitterly.”

the branch of a peony (芍藥枝 작약지): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “In the 5th month of the 22nd year of King Chungnyeol’s reign, when the peonies were in full bloom at Su’nyeong-gung palace (壽寧宮 n.120), the princess ordered a flower to be brought to her. Holding it for a good while her emotions gave way to tears. She became sick and died at the age of thirty-nine.”

37
結識中朝趙子昻  결식중조조자앙  入入平平上上平(陽)
風流都尉瀋陽王  풍류도위심양왕  平平平去上平平
敎人提擧征東省  교인제거정동성  平平平上平平上
留醉盧溝萬卷堂  유취노구만권당  平去平平去上平

gyeol sil jung jo jo ja ang
pung ryu do wi sim yang wang
gyo in je geo jeong dong seong
yu chwi no gu man gwon dang

[King Chungseon] formed a close friendship with [painter/calligrapher] Zhao Zi Ang of the Chinese [Yuan] court.
Enjoying music and arts, he was the imperial son-in-law and the Shenyang king.
He entrusted the Eastern Expedition Field Headquarters [by now only an institute used for controlling Goryeo’s affairs] to others [Chungseon handed power to his son Chungsuk in 1313],
And spent his time drunk at the Ten-thousand Volume Library in Lugou [southeast district of Beijing].

the Shenyang king (瀋陽王 심양왕): according to the Yuanshi (History of the Yuan 元史), “The Goryeo king Won (言+原 원, aka King Chungseon 忠宣王) was the son of Geo (昛, aka King Chungnyeol) and succeeded him to the throne. In the first year of Emperor Chengzong (成宗 r.1294-1307) he was married to Princess Bodasiri (寶塔實燐公主 d.1315 n.124) and in the 11th year he was enfeoffed as king of Shenyang (瀋陽 심양, a Yuan title for the Goryeo kings, referring to the region of Liaoyang 遼陽 요양 where many Goryeo people had been displaced during the Mongol invasions. n.125).”

the Eastern Expedition Field Headquarters (征東省): according to the Yuanshi (元史), “In the 21st Zhiyuan (至元 c.1284) year, the Eastern Expedition Field Headquarters (征東行中書省 n.126) was established in Goryeo.”

the Ten-thousand Volume Library (萬卷堂): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “King Chungseon’s (忠宣王) name before death (諱 휘) was Jang (璋), his earlier name was Won (言+原) and his Mongol name was Ijireubuka (益知禮普花). After around ten years residing in Yuan, he assisted Emperor Renzong (仁宗 r.1311-20) in suppressing an internal rebellion and welcomed the enthronement of Emperor Wuzong (武宗 r.1307-11).  As dawei Great Lieutenant (大尉) he resided in a mansion in [the southeast district, Lugou 盧溝 노구, of] Beijing (燕京) and there constructed the Man’gwon-dang library (萬卷堂 ‘ten thousand volume hall’ est.1314 n.127) where he entertained himself (自娛) with history books. Yao Sui (姚燧 1239-1314 n.128), Yan Fu (閻復 염복 1236-1312 n.129), Yuan Mingshan (元明善 1269-1332 n.130) and Zhao Mengfu (1254-1322 趙孟頫, aka Zhao Zi Ang n.121) all used to meet (遊) in the king’s courtyard.”

38
銀燭如星照禁扃  은촉여성조금경  平入平平去平
題詩多上牧丹亭  제시다상목단정  平平平上入平平(靑)
如今破瓦嵩山在  여금파와숭산재  平平去上平平上
不復三呼繞殿靑  불복삼호요전청  入入平平去去平

eung chok yeo seong jo geum gyeong
je si da sang mok dan jeong
yeo geum pa wa sung sang jae
bul bok san ho yo jeon cheong

Like star[light], silver candlelight illuminates the crossbar of the palace [gate].
Many [people] climb up to the Peony Pavilion to compose poems.
Just as there are now [only] broken tiles [to be found] on Mount Sung,
So too will the three calls never again echo around [lit. “surround”] the palace paintwork.

Peony Pavilion (牧丹停 목란정): according to the Yi-sang-gukjip (Collected Works of Minister Yi 李相國集), “When the peonies bloom around Sanho-jeong pavilion (山呼亭 n.132) the number of people there composing poems reaches a hundred.” According to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Sanho-jeong is inside Yeon’gyeong-gung palace (延慶宮 n.133).”

Mount Sung (嵩山): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Song’ak (松岳) is five li to the north of Gaeseong-bu. It was originally called both Buso (扶蘇) and Gongnyeong (鵠嶺 곡령); it is also known as Sung-san (崧山) and Sinsung (神嵩)”

the three calls surround (echo around) the palace paintwork (三呼繞殿靑 삼호요전청): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “During the time of King Chunghye (忠惠王 r.1330-32, 1339-44), Song’ak mountain would call (鳴) during the night. Thinking it strange, he asked about it and Jinmujak-geum (陣無作金 n.339) told him, ‘It is nothing to worry about. In an old poem is a line saying, Seong’ak calls thrice enveloping the palace paintwork.’ The king rejoiced.”

39
指點前朝宰相家  지점전조재상가  上上平平上去平(麻)
廢園風雨土牆斜  폐원풍우토장사  去平平上上平平
牧丹孔雀凋零盡  목단공작조영진  入平上入平平上
黃蝶雙雙飛采花  황접쌍쌍비채화  平入平平平

ji jeom jeon jo jae sang ga
pye won pung u to jang sa
mok dan gong jak jo yeong jin
hwang jeop ssang ssang bi chae hwa

[One can] point with their finger to the prime minister’s house of the previous dynasty [ie Goryeo];
[Battered by] wind and rain, the earthen walls of the overgrown garden are leaning over.
The peonies have withered and the peacocks are gone;
[Only] pairs of yellow butterflies flit amongst the herbs and flowers.

peonies and peacocks (牧丹孔雀): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “At the beginning of [King] Sinjong’s (神宗 r.1197-1204) reign chamji-jeongsa (參知政事) Cha Yak-song (車若松 n.134) and teukjin (特進) Gi Hong-su (奇洪壽 1148-1209, n.135) together entered the Chungseo-seong (中書省 Chancellery for Internal Affairs). Yak-song asked Hong-su, ‘How is [your] peacock?’ To which Hong-su answered, ‘It died after eating a fish and getting a bone stuck in its throat.’ Hong-su then asked about cultivating peonies to which Yak-song gave a detailed explanation. Those who heard this mocked them for it.”

40
潮落潮生急水門  조락조생급수문  平入平平入上平(元)
年年商舶到江村  연년상박도강촌  平平平入去平平
攢峯十二巫山似  찬봉십이무산사  平入去平平上
只少三聲墮淚猿  지소삼성타누원  上上平平上去平

jo rak jo saeng geup su mun
yeon nyeon sang bak do gang chon
chan bong sip i mu san sa
ji so sam seong ta nu won

The tide ebbs and flows at Swift Water Gate;
Each year trade ships arrived at the river village.
The twelve peaks [were said to] resemble the Wu mountains [巫山, on the Yangtze River by Wu Xia],
Only the three voices of monkeys crying are missing. [Both Li Bai and Du Fu wrote poems about the monkeys of the Wu mountains n.136.]

Swift Water Gate, Geupsu-mun (急水門): according to the Songshi (History of Song 宋史), “The Yeseong River (禮成江) is between two mountains and is bound together as a stone ravine. The water swirls and violently flows downwards. The place where it is most dangerous is called Geupsu-mun (Swift Water Gate).” According to the Damingyitongzhi (Complete Records of the Great Ming 大明一統志), “Geupsu-mun is in the sea to the south of Gaeseong. It resembles Wu-xia gorge (巫峽) [on the Yangtze River].”

trade ships (商舶): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “Song merchants gathered at the Yeseong River.”

41
天壽南門春暮時  천수남문춘모시  平去平平平去平(支)
丹樓碧閣影參差  단누벽각영참차  平平入入上平平(麻)
風蓑雨笠何村客  풍사우립하촌객  入平平入
終日沈吟看鷺鷥  종일침음간로사  平入平平去去

cheon su nam mun chun mo si
dan nu byeok gak yeong cham cha
pung sa u rip ha chon gaek
jong il chim eum gan ro sa

On a spring evening as light fades by the south gate of Cheonsu Temple
Shadows cast by the red and green pavilions become indistinguishable.
A rustic traveller wearing a straw coat and hat to protect himself from wind and rain,
Has spent the day reciting poetry watching a white heron.

Cheonsu-won academy (天壽院): according to Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Cheonsu-won is to the east of the fortress (城) and is the former site of Cheonsu-sa temple (天壽寺).”

watching a white heron (看鷺鷥 간로사): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “In order to write the poem White Heron (鷺鷥), Gang Il-yong (康日用 n.138) would brave the rain each time and go to the stream south of Cheonsu-sa Temple to watch them.”

42
紫霞洞裏艸霏霏  자하동리초비비  上平去上上
不見宮姬並馬歸  불견궁희병마귀  入去平平上上平(微)
爲是辛王行樂地  위시신왕행락지  平上平平平入去
至今猶有燕雙飛  지금유유연쌍비  去平平上去平平

ja ha dong ri cho bi bi
bul gyeon gung hwi byeong ma gwi
wi si sin wang haeng rak ji
ji geum yu yu yeon ssang bi

The vegetation grows densely in Purple Afterglow Valley;
The palace lady returning on her horse beside [King Sin] is [nowhere] to be seen.
This was once the playground of King Sin,
However now only swallows [remain] flying together with their mates.

Purple Afterglow Valley, Jaha-dong (紫霞洞): according to Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Jaha-dong valley is beneath Mount Song’ak (松岳山). The valley (洞府) is deep and dangerous. The stream water is clear and flows gently. It is the most scenic of places.”

King Sin (辛王 r.1374-1388): according to the Mingshi (History of Ming 明史), “Goryeo king Jeon (顓 aka 恭愍王 r.1330-74) had no son and so he adopted U (禑 aka King Sin n.139), the son of Chongsin Sin Don (寵臣 辛旽 d.1371 n.140).” According to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “When he was young, Sin U’s (辛禑) name was Monino (牟尼奴). He was the child of Sin Don and his slave concubine (婢妾) Ban’ya (般若).”

swallows fly together with their mates, yeon-ssang-bi (燕雙飛 연쌍비): according to the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “Sin Don had the gisaeng Yeon Ssang Bi (Flying Pair of Swallows 燕雙飛) carry a bow and play a flute. Dressing her in a dragon embroidered dress, they would ride with their reins adjacent to one another.”

43
可憐靑木未藏龍  가련청목미장룡  上平平入去平平(冬)
蕭瑟千年鵠嶺松  소슬천년곡령송  平入平平入上平
鐵犬寥寥東向吠  철견요요동향폐  入上平平平去去
白雲飛盡見三峯  백운비진견삼봉  入平平上去平平

ga ryeon cheong mok mi jang ryong
sol seul cheon nyeon gok ryeong song
cheol gyeon yo yo dong hyang pye
baek un bi jin gyeon sam bong

It is pitiful that a dragon cannot hide in a green tree [Refers to the prophecy of Taebong in poem 34];
Cold and sad, [only] the pines of Tundra Swan Pass (Gong-nyeong 鵠嶺, another name for Song’ak Mountain n.141)* [survive] a thousand years.
Iron dogs [were placed] to silently bark at the east,
For only when the white clouds blew away was Three Peak Mountain seen.

* [Refers to the message sent by Choe Chiwon to Wang Geon when he first established Goryeo “鵠嶺靑松 鷄林黃葉 (곡령청송 계림황엽)” mentioned in poem 24.]

iron dogs (鐵犬): according to the Songgyeong-japgi (Miscellaneous Records of the Pine Capital aka Gaeseong 松京雜記 n.142), “It is said that, ‘Holy monk Doseon (道詵 n.143) determined the site south of Mount Song’ak for the [new Goryeo] capital. A little later, the clouds lifted revealing to the southeast the three peaks, Samgak-san, of Hanyang (漢陽 三角山) which reached the sky. Seeing this, Doseon collapsed in surprise and lamented. They made twelve iron dogs and had them bark in that direction. This is because Samgak was a gyubong (窺峰 n.144) mountain that effected the auspiciousness of Mount Song’ak. (They also placed on a large rock the Sangmyeong-deung (Ever Shining Lantern 常明橙), a type of lantern used to ward away robbers n.145).'” Now to the east of Gaeseong is Jwa’gyeon-ni (座犬里 Sitting Dog Village, referenced in a poem by Kim Yuk (金堉 1580-1658) n.146).

Advertisements

Sources: “Study of Balhae” 渤海考 (1784) – Bak Jega’s Preface

Bak Je-ga (朴齊家 1750-1815) was author of Bukhak-ui (北學議 Discussions of Northern Learning, 1778) and a close friend to Yu Deukgong.  This is an attempted  translation of his preface to Yu’s Balhae-go (渤海考 Study of Balhae, 1784).  See also Yu’s own preface.

Bak Jega’s Preface to Balhae-go 渤海考序

Early on I crossed west of the Amnok (鴨綠) [river] and, taking the Aiyang road (靉陽, in present day Fengcheng city, Liaoning Province), arrived at Liaoyang (遼陽, in central east Liaoning). Throughout the journey of some five or six hundred li (里), it was nearly all [a landscape of] tall mountains and deep valleys. [Only after] emerging from Langzi-shan mountain (狼子山) (present day Liangjia 亮甲), could [we] see an infinitely expansive plain where the sun, moon and flying birds would rise and sink in the prairie mist (野氣). But turning to view the mountains of the northeast, [the mountains] formed a ring around heaven, blocking the earth, just like a single straight brushstroke; [these] tall mountains and deep valleys that faced [us] were all beyond the thousand li perimeter of Liaodong. We sighed and marvelled, “This is the edge of heaven!”

Liaodong is [but] one corner of the world. However, nowhere has given rise to more heroes and kings (帝王) than here. The land bordered with Yan (燕, present day northeast Hebei province) and Qi (齊 present Shandong province) and thus the circumstances (勢) of China could easily be watched. Consequently the Dae clan (大氏) of Balhae, [took] the scattered remnant [folk] and, [even though they] abandoned the land outside the mountains, it was still sufficient to valiantly watch a single direction and vie (抗衝) with [the rest of] the world (天下). The Wang clan (王氏) unified the three Han (三韓, refers to the Later Three Kingdoms) but in the end they (其世) did not dare to [venture] a single step beyond the Amnok [river] and so [we] can see the traces of division and occupation, of gain and loss of the mountains and rivers.

A woman cannot see [the world] beyond the eaves of the roof; a child’s wanderings barely extend beyond the threshold: [they] certainly are insufficient to speak of anything beyond the [outer] wall [of their house]! Scholars [today] are [all] born inside the nine provinces of [Unified] Silla; their eyes are shut and ears blocked. They do not even know about the rise and fall, nor wars and battles of the Han, Tang, Song and Ming [dynasties]: less still of Balhae’s past events.

My friend, Mr Yu Hye-pung (楡惠風君, one of Yu Deukgong’s style names), is both erudite and skillful at poetry. He is expert at history (掌故) and has already compiled the Poems and Annotations of the Twenty-One Capitals (廿一都詩註) which looks in detail at internal [Korean history] (域內). [He has now] extended it writing [this] single volume Balhae-go. He has finely woven together the threads of personages, administrative divisions, a list of kings (世次) and basic chronology (沿革). That these have been brought together is a great happiness. But he says it is lamentable that the Wang clan [of Goryeo] was unable to restore the former [Go]guryeo territory. The Wang clan did not restore the old territory and so the places of Gyerim (鷄林 aka Silla) and Nangnang (樂浪 aka Goguryeo) eventually became vague (貿貿) and severed from the rest of the world (天下).

This corresponds with what I know and have previously seen, and I marvel at Mr Yu’s talent to be able to fathom the circumstances of the world and investigate the methods of good and bad kings. Further, how could this work be specially prepared [simply as] the writings of a single country; only the length could [be negatively compared with] the books of Huhui (胡恢) and Maling (馬令) [who both wrote histories of the Southern Tang]. Thus [I write this] preface and argue like this.

Autumn, 9th year [of King Jeongjo] (1785)

Sources: “Study of Balhae” 渤海考 (1784) – Author’s Preface 自序

P1030114c720 cropped
This is the famous preface to Yu Deukgong‘s Balhae-go ( 渤海考 Study of Balhae 1784).  See also, his friend, Bak Jega’s preface.

Author’s Preface

Goryeo did not compile (修) a history of Balhae and so [we] know that Goryeo was not fully vibrant (不振). In the past, the Go clan (高氏) resided in the north and [their land was] called Goguryeo; the Buyeo clan (夫餘氏) resided in the southwest and were called Baekje; and the Bak (朴), Seok (昔) and Kim (金) clans were in the southeast and called Silla. These were the Three Kingdoms. Appropriately there was a history of the Three Kingdoms which Goryeo had [duly] compiled. This was right.

Subsequently the Buyeo and Go clans came to an end; the Kim clan occupied the south whilst the Dae clan (大氏) occupied the north and [its country] was called Balhae. These were the Southern and Northern Kingdoms and there should have befittingly been a history of the Southern and Northern Kingdoms, but Goryeo did not compile one. This was wrong.

Who were the Dae clan? They were Goguryeo people. What land was it they occupied? It was Goguryeo land. They drove [others] out (斥) to the east, west and north and enlarged [the territory].

Subsequently [both] the Kim and Dae came to an end; the Wang clan (王氏) came to power (統) and, occupying [the former territories, their country] was called Goryeo. In the south they occupied all of the Kim clan’s [former] territory but in the north they could not occupy all of the Dae’s. Some of it went to the Jurchen (女眞) and some to the Khitan (契丹). At that time those who devised plans (計) for Goryeo should have quickly compiled a history of Balhae. They [should have] taken this to the Jurchen and remonstrated them saying, “Why don’t you return our Balhae territory? Balhae’s territory was Goguryeo territory!” Then [they should have] sent a military general to go and take [the territory] and that way they could have occupied to the north of the Tomun (土門 present day Tumen) [river]. Then [similarly they should have] taken [the history] to the Khitan and remonstrated them saying, “Why don’t you return our Balhae territory? Balhae’s territory was Goguryeo territory!” Then [they should have] sent a military general to go and take [the territory] and that way they could have occupied to the west of the Amnok (鴨綠 present day Yalu) [river]. [However], in the end no [such] history of Balhae was compiled and so no one knew which clan’s land they were, either to the north of the Tomun or to the west of the Amnok. [Even if] they wanted to remonstrate the Jurchen there was nothing they could say. [Even if] they wanted to remonstrate the Khitan, there was nothing they could say.

Goryeo in the end became a weak country because it was unable to reclaim (得) the Balhae territory. How lamentable! Perhaps [Goryeo people even] said, “Balhae was overthrown by the [Khitan] Liao how could its history be compiled?” This is not so. Balhae had a system of government (憲) resembling China’s and it would certainly have had a history bureau (史官). Its capital, Holhan-seong (忽汗城), was destroyed [but] those who fled to Goryeo with the crown prince [numbered] in the hundreds of thousands. [So even if] there were no official historians [amongst them] there would definitely have been books; [even] if there were no historians or books, [they could have] asked the crown prince and been able to learn the court [history] (世). They could have asked the Eun Gyejong (隱繼宗) and learnt [about Balhae’s] ritual behaviour (禮). If they asked the [remaining] hundreds of thousands, there is nothing that they could not have found out.

Zhang Jianzhang (張建章 806-866, see note below) was from Tang [China], yet he authored the Bohaiguo-ji (渤海國記 Record of Bohai/Balhae); [how is it, there were] Goryeo people but they were unable to compile a history of Balhae themselves?

Ah! It is [now] centuries after the literature [pertaining to Balhae] has been scattered and lost. Even if one attempts to compile [a history, the sources] cannot be obtained! Whilst [working] as an official at the Naegak (內閣, refers to Gyujanggak royal library) I extensively read royal/rare books (秘書 lit. ‘secret books’) and selectively compiled (撰次) the matters [concerning] Balhae as nine go short studies (考) on [the following]: rulers (君), subjects/officials (臣), geography, ranks and titles, ceremonial texts (儀章), produce (産物), language, literature and successor states. That they cannot be termed [under the orthodox categories of] important houses (世), biographies (傳) and treatises (志) but [only] go [means] this is not a complete history. [I] would not dare pretend this is an [official] history [史].

15th day, 3rd [lunar] leap month of Gabjin (甲辰 1784)

Note:
Zhang Jianzhang (張建章 806-866) served as a Tang emissary to Barhae, his tomb was discovered in Beijing in 1956. In 832 a Balhae emissary visited Youzhou (幽州, modern Beijing) and the following year Zhang was sent to Balhae. He arrived in the capital of Balhae in the 9th lunar month of 834 and returned Youzhou in the 8th month of 835. Based on this visit he authored the three volume Bohai-ji (渤海記 Record of Bohai); it has not survived but is thought to have been a primary reference for the ‘Bohai-zhuan’ (渤海傳) section of the Xin-Tangshu (新唐書 New Book of Tang).  (See Song 2012:41)

References:
Song Gi-ho 송기호 (translator). 2012: 발해고 (Study of Balhae). Seoul: (주)홍익출판사

Sources: Yu Deukgong’s “Nostalgic Reflections of the Twenty-One Capitals” 二十一都懷古詩 (1792) – part 5 of 6

See Introductionpart 1part 2part 3 and part 4.

金官  Geumgwan [a later name for Bon Gaya 本伽倻]

In the Nanqishu (Book of Southern Qi 南齊書) it is written, “The country of Gara-guk (伽羅國) was a tribe (種) of the Three Han. In the 1st Jianyuan year (建元, 479) a tributary mission came sent by King Haji (荷知王). He was designated [by the emperor] fuguo-jiangjun-benguo-wang (loyal vassal state general and king of the main country 輔國將軍本國王 보국장군본국왕).”

In the Beishi (北史) it is written, “Silla was an affiliated state of Gara-guk (加羅國).”

In an annotation (註) of the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “Gaya (伽倻) was also called Gara (加羅).”

In the Garakguk-gi (History of Garak-guk 駕洛國記 가락국기) it is written, “In the 3rd month of the 18th Jianwu year (建武) of the Later Han Emperor Guangwu (光武帝), nine chieftains of Garak performed the yudu [流頭] sacrificial purification ceremony to ward of evil (禊飮 n.91) beside the water, whereupon looking up at Gwiji-bong peak (龜旨峯) there was a supernatural energy (異氣). Looking closer [they saw] a golden hap bowl (盒) tied with purple string had descended. Opening the lid they found inside six golden eggs which they ceremoniously arranged (置). The next day the eggs broke and there were six boys. Each day they [grew] in intelligence and magnificence. After ten days they were nine cheok tall. The people chose one of them to be their suzerain (宗主) and this was King Suro (首露王). Because he was born from a golden egg, his surname was Kim (Gold 金). The country’s name was Gaya and this was in the 18th year (AD42) of King Yuri (儒理王) of Silla. The remaining five became lords of the Five Gaya (五伽倻) which defined its borders as the Hwangsan River (黃山江) to the east, the sea to the southwest, Mount Jiri (智異山) to the northwest and Mount Gaya (伽倻山) to the east [again].”

In the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽) it is written, “[The territory of] the Five Gaya [was thus]. Goryeong (高靈) was Dae-Gaya (大伽倻), Go-seong (固城) was So-Gaya (小伽倻), Seong-ju (星州) was Byeokjin-Gaya (碧珍伽倻), Ham’an (咸安) was Ara-Gaya (阿那伽倻) and Hamchang (咸昌) was Goryeong-Gaya (古寧伽倻). Also, Gwiji-bong peak (龜旨峯) is three li to the north of Gimhae-bu (金海府) and the site of King Suro’s palace is inside Gimhae-bu.”

In the Yeoji-ji (輿地志) it is written, “The tomb of King Suro is 300 paces (步) to the west of Gimhae-bu and beside it is the ancestral shrine (廟 묘). The tomb of the queen is on the eastern side of Mount Gwiji (龜旨山). The people of Gimehae-bu perform memorial services all together in the first, fifth and eight months of the year.”

In the Jibong-yuseol (芝峯類說) it is written, “In the Imjin year, the Japanese bandits exhumed King Suro’s grave and found his skull bone to be as large as a copper pot. Beside the coffin were two women whose facial colour looked like they were still alive, but upon bringing them out, they quickly deteriorated.”

In the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考) it is written, “Garak (駕洛) was alternatively called Garak (伽落) and also Gaya (伽倻). Later on it was changed to Geumgwan (金官).”

28
訪古伽倻咽竹枝  방고가야인죽지  去上平平平入平(支)
婆娑塔影虎溪湄  파사탑영호계미  平去入上上平平
回看落日沈西海  회간락일침서해  平去入入平平上
正似紅旗入浦時  정사홍기입포시  去上平平入上平

bang go ga ya in juk ji
pa sa tap yeong ho gye mi
hoe gan rak il chim seo hae
jeong sa hong gi ip po si

Upon visiting Old Gaya [her] throat was dry from [singing the] zhuzhi (lit. ‘bamboo branch’ 竹枝 n.91) songs.
The Pasa-tap pagoda casts a shadow on the banks of Tiger Stream.
Looking back the sun sets over the Western Sea;
It appears just as when the red flag arrived at the harbour.

visiting Old Gaya (訪古伽倻): Po’eun Jeong Mong-ju (圃隱 鄭夢周) wrote in the poem Swallow Pagoda of Gimhae (金海燕子樓), “Visiting Old Gaya, the grass is the colour of spring but having prospered and declined many times, the sea has become dust.”

Pasa-tap pagoda (婆娑塔 파사탑): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Pasa stone pagoda is beside the Ho-gye Stream (虎溪). It has five stories, a mottled red pattern and the carvings are particularly elaborate and strange. It is said that, ‘When Empress Heo (許皇后 허황후) came from the Western Regions (西域), she had this pagoda placed on her boat to calm the waves.'”

Tiger Stream, Ho-gye (虎溪): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Ho-gye stream is in the middle of Gimhaebu-seong fortress (金海府城). Its source emerges from Mount Bun (盆山) and, flowing south, it enters Gangchang-po (江倉浦).”

the red flag arriving at the harbour (紅旗入浦): according to the Garakguk-gi (駕洛國記), “In the 24th Jianwu year of the Eastern Han emperor [Guangwu], Empress Heo arrived crossing the sea from Ayodhya (Ch. Ayutuo 阿踰陀國). Looking at the silk sail and madder red (茜) flag which from the southwest corner of the sea pointed to the north, King Suro had set up a temporary tent palace (幔殿) to the west of the palace and was waiting. Mooring the ship and coming ashore, the empress climbed the mountain and whilst resting took off the patterned silk trousers she was wearing and presented them to the mountain spirit (山靈). As soon as she arrived, the king welcomed her and they went into the tent palace. After two days they came out and went by palanquin (輦 연) to the main palace where she was enthroned as empress. The Gaya people call the place where her boat first docked, Ju-po (Ruler’s Harbour 主浦), the place where she took off her trousers as Neung-hyeon (Silk Summit/pass 綾峴) and the place where the red flag entered the sea as Gichul-byeon (Flag-emerging Shore 旗出邊 기출변).” According to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Someone said that Empress Heo (許) was also called the princess of southern India (Nan Tianzhuguo 南天竺國); her surname was Heo (許 허), her first name Hwang’ok (黃玉) and her title (號) Empress Dowager of Jinju (普州太后).”

大伽倻  Greater Gaya

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “In the 23rd year of King Jingheung’s (of Silla) reign, the king ordered Isabu (異斯夫) to subjugate Gaya (伽倻) and made Sadaham (斯多含 n.93) second in command (副). Leading 5,000 mounted warriors, [Isabu] galloped to Jeondan-mun Gate (旃檀門) and there erected a white flag. Those inside the fortress became afraid and knew not what to do. With Isabu leading his soldiers, the fortress surrendered.”

In the Yeoji-ji (輿地志) it is written, “[The territory of] Greater Gaya is now Goryeong-hyeon (高靈縣); one li to the south of the hyeon [‘county’] is the site of the old palace. There is also a stone well called Eo-jeong (御井).”

In the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考) it is written, “The founded of Greater Gaya was King Ijinado (伊珍阿鼓王) and until King Doseolji (道設智王), there were sixteen generations.”

29
千載高山流水音  천재고산류수음  平上平平平上平(侵)
泠泠一十二絃琴  령령일십이현금  上上入入去平平
凄凉往事無人問  처량왕사무인문  平平上去平平去
紅葉迎霜作錦林  홍엽영상작금림  平入平平入上平

cheon jae go san ryu su eum
ryeong ryeong il sip i hyeon geum
cheo ryang wang sa mu in mun
hong yeop yeong sang jak geum rim

The sound of flowing water [has been heard] on the high mountain for a thousand years.
The clear [sound] of the twelve string zither.
No one asks of desolate past events,
The red leaves meet with frost and form a forest of silk.

twelve string zither (一十二絃琴): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “The music teacher (樂師) of King Gasil of Gaya, U Reuk (于勒), made a zither based on the Chinese qin-zheng (秦箏 진쟁 n.94) called the Gaya-geum zither (伽倻琴). Three li to the north of Goryeong-hyeon (高靈縣) is a place named Geum-gok (Zither Valley 琴谷). It is said that it is where he led the court musicians to practice.” According to the Jibong-yuseol (芝峯類說), “Because the King of Gaya made a twelve string zither, it is now called the Gaya-geum.”

a forest of silk (錦林 금림): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Two li to the west of Goryeong-hyeon is an old grave (古藏), which is known as the Geumnim-wangneung (Silk Forest 錦林) royal tomb.'”

甘文  Gammun

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “In the 2nd year of his reign, the Silla king, Jobun-isageum (助賁尼師今), made ichan (伊湌) U-ro (于老 우로) general (大將軍) and, invading and defeating the state of Gammun (甘文國), made its territory into a gun (郡 ‘commandery’).

In the Yeoji-ji (輿地志) it is written, “Gammun is present day Gaeryeong-hyeon (開寧縣). Mount Gammun (甘文山) is two li to the north. Also, Mount Yu (柳山) is two li to the east of the hyeon and to its north the site of Gammun remains.”

30
獐姬一去野花香  장희일거야화향  平平入去上平平(陽)
埋沒殘碑古孝王  매몰잔비고효왕  平入平平上去平
三十雄兵曾大發  삼십웅병증대발  平入平平平去入
蝸牛角上鬪千場  와우각상투천장  平平入去去平平

jang hwi il geo ya hwa hyang
mae mol jan bi go hyo wang
sam sip ung byeong jeung dae bal
wa u gak sang tu cheon jang

After Queen Jang’s passing, the meadow flowers are fragrant.
The [half] buried and aging memorial stone [is that of] the ancient King Hyo.
[It is said] they fielded just thirty manly warriors;
For a thousand battles on [a patch of land no larger than the space] between a snail’s tentacles!

Queen Jang (獐姬): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “The tomb of Queen Jang (獐陵) is west of Gaeryeong-hyeon on Ung-hyeon crest (熊峴). It is said to be the tomb of Madam Jang (獐夫人) of Gammun.”

King Hyo (孝王): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Twenty li to the north of Gaeryeong-hyeon is a large grave. It is said to be the tomb of Gammun king Kim Hyo (金孝).”

thirty manly warriors (三十雄兵): according to the Dong-sa (東史), “At its most, Gammun fielded thirty warriors.” According to the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考), “Gammun was likely an extremely small country.”

于山  Usan [modern day Ulleung Island]

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “In the 13th year of King Jijeung-maripgan (智證麻立干), the state of Usan (于山國) submitted to Silla and each year sent local products as tribute. Usan-guk is an island located directly to the east of Myeongju. It is also known as Ulleung-do island (鬱陵島).”

In the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽) it is written, “Ulleung-do is also known both as Mureung (武陵) and Ureung (羽陵) and is located in the sea directly east of Uljin-hyeon (蔚珍縣). In four directions the land stretches a 100 li and the earth is rich and fertile. The bamboo is as large as pillars, the rats as large as cats and peach seeds the size of a doe (升 승) measuring vessel.”

31
春風五兩邏帆廻  춘풍오량나범회  平平上上去平平(灰)
海上桃花寂寞開  해상도화적막개  上去平平入入平
唯見可之登岸臥  유견가지등안와  平去上平平去去
更無獅子撲人來  갱무사자박인래  去平平上入平平

chun pung o ryang na beom hoe
hae sang do hwa jeok mak gae
yu gyeon ga ji deung an wa
gaeng mu sa ja bak in rae

Spring wind blows the oryang [wind measuring instrument] on the sails of the patrol ship [visiting Usan Island].
Peach blossoms [being brought back from the island] open lonely and sad about the sea.
Only sea lions lie up on the seashore,
No more lions will come to attack the people.

the sails of the patrol ship (邏帆 나범): according to the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考), “On Ulleung-do there are all kinds of fragrant plants including sickle hare’s ear (柴胡 시호 n.97), gobon Apiaceae (藁本 n.98), camphor tree (石楠 석남 n.99) and wisteria (藤草 등초 n.100). Many of the nojuk (蘆竹) bamboo trunks are wider than one can wrap their arms around whilst the fruit of nojuk bamboo and seeds of peaches are as large as a wine glass (杯) or doe (升 승). The Silla court (本朝) dispatched (刷出 쇄출) fleeing citizens (逃民) to open up (空) the land and every three years an inspector would be sent. Distributing fifteen axes, they would cut bamboo and timber; gathering local products they were given as tribute to the (Silla) court and used as guarantees/tokens of trust (信物). The yeongjang commander of Samcheok (三陟營將) and manho commander of Wolsong (越松萬戶) went there in turn.”

sea lions (可之): according to the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考), “On the shore of Ulleung-do island there is an animal similar to a cow but with red eyes and no horns. In large groups they lie on the shore. If they see someone coming alone they may harm them, but if many people come they will swim away. They are called gaji (可之 n.101) sea lions.”

lions (獅子): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “After Isabu (異斯夫) became military commander (軍主) of Aseulla-ju (阿瑟羅州 present day Gangneung-si n.102) he began to plot the annexation of Usan-guk. Regarding the people of Usan-guk as foolish and primitive he knew he would be able to subjugate them through a scheme. So he had many wooden lions made and loaded them onto war ships. Arriving at the island state, he told them, ‘If you do not surrender we will release these lions which will trample and kill you!’ Frightened the people surrendered.”

耽羅  Tamna [modern day Jeju Island]

In the Beishi (北史) it is written, “In the sea south of Baekje is the state of Tammora-guk (耽牟羅國). The land has many roe and other deer. It is a vassal state to Baekje.”

In the Tangshu (唐書) it is written, “At the beginning of Yongsak (龍朔 661-3) [year of Emperor Gaozong], there was a place called Damna (儋羅 담라). Its king, Yuri Dora (儒理都羅) sent an envoy to the [Tang] court. The state was on an island to the south of Mu-ju province (武州) of Silla. Its customs are simple and dirty. They wear the skin of large pigs. In summer they live in houses made of animal hide and in the winter they live in caves. At first it was a vassal state to Baekje but later became vassal to Silla.”

In the Tamnaguk-gi (History of Tamna 耽羅國記) it is written, “In the beginning there were three human gods (神人) who came out of the ground and were called Yang-eulna (良乙那), Go-eulna (高乙那) and Bu-eulna (夫乙那). The three eulna roamed around hunting in a wild and remote place. They wore animals skins and ate meat. One day they saw a person wearing a red belt and purple clothes. He had loaded in a box three maidens wearing blue clothes, ponies, calves and seeds of the five cereals. He said, ‘I am an emissary from Japan (日本). Our king had these three daughters and said, “In the West Sea (西海) three holy children (神子) have descended and will establish a country but have no spouses so I am sending my three daughters.”‘ The three eulna each married one of the girls according to their age; they sowed the cereal and bred the ponies and calves and so began to prosper. The place where Yang-eulna resided was known as the First Capital (第一都, n.104), the place were Go-eulna resided as the Second Capital (第二都) and Bu-eulna’s as the Third Capital (第三都). The twelfth generation descendents of Go-eulna, Go Hu (高厚) and Go Cheong (高淸), together with their younger brother (弟三人) built boats and crossed the sea dropping anchor at Tamjin (耽津). This was at a time when Silla was thriving. At this time a guest star (客星 ‘variable star’ n.105) was visible in the south and the astronomers (太史) declared, ‘This is an omen of foreigners coming to pay homage to [our] court (來朝).’ The king regarded the arrival of Hu and the others as a rejoiceful thing. He named Hu as Seongju (Star Lord 星主 n.106) as he had moved the star signs (星象). He ordered Cheong to wear his trousers on the outside (??令淸出袴下) and loving him like a son named him Wangja (prince 王子 n.107) whilst their younger brother was named Donae (‘inside the capital’ 都內). Their country was named Tamna (耽羅 탐라) as their boats had moored at Tamjin when coming to pay homage to the Silla court. The king gifted them with jewels and clothing and sent them off. Thenceforth they served Silla and eventually those with the surname Go (高氏) took the title seongju, those named Yang (良氏) took the title wangja and those with Bu (夫氏), dosang (都上). Later on Yang (良) became Yang (梁).”

In the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽) it is written, “Jeju (濟州) was originally called Tamna-guk (耽羅國) and alternatively Tangna (乇羅 탁라) or Tammora (耽毛羅).”

32
三乙那城瘴霧開  삼을나성장무개  平入平平平去平(灰)
耽津江口峭帆廻  탐진강구초범회  平平平上 平平
厥初還有毛興穴  궐초환유모흥혈  入平平上平平入
何必他人袴下來  하필타인고하래  平平平平去上平

sam eul na seong jang mu gae
tam jin gang gu cho beom hoe
gwol cho hwan yu mo heung hyeol
ha pil ta in go ha rae

Humid mist clears over the Fortress of the Three Eulna.
The tall sail returns to [from] the mouth of the Tamjin-gang river.
From the very beginning the had the Moheung-hyeol hole.
Why would they have to come out of another person’s trousers?! [Refuting a Silla myth that they emerged from the king’s trousers.]

Tamjin (耽津): according to the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考), “Present day Gangjin-hyeon (康津縣) was Tamjin of Silla.”

the Moheung Hole (毛興穴): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “On the north side of Mount Jin (鎭山) in Jeju-mok (濟州牧), at the base of the mountain is a hole called Moheung-hyeol. It is from here that the three eulna emerged.”

後百濟  Later Baekje

In the Samguk-sagi it is written, “Gyeon-hwon (甄萱) was from Ga’eun-hyeon (加恩縣) in Sang-ju (尙州). His appearance was majestic and strange/wondrous; the spirit of his will (志氣) was extraordinary. Joining the army he was given the task of defending the southwest sea and based on his deeds (功勞) there he was made pijang adjutant (裨將). In the 6th year of King Jin-seong of Silla, bandits were multiplying like insects. Gyeon-hwon raised a group and attacked the provinces and counties (州縣) to the southwest of the capital. At each place he came to he found new sympathizers. Eventually, after attacking Mujin-ju (武珍州) he established his capital at Mount Wan (完山) and, proclaiming himself king of Later Baekje, he sent emissaries to Later Tang who were referred to as border emissaries (藩臣 번신). Later Tang bestowed the titles of (“Inspector of State” 檢校太尉兼侍中 검교태위겸시중), (“Supreme Commanding General of the Baekje Army” 判百濟軍事持節都督全武公等州軍事 판백제군사지절도독전무공등주군사) and (“General Governor, Magistrate of Jeonju, Four Direction Supreme Military Commander in the Eastern Seas and King of Baekje” 行全州刺史海東四面都統指揮兵馬制置等事百濟王 행전주자사해동사면도통지휘병마제치등사백제왕) and allotted fiefdoms (食邑) of 2,500 ho households (戶).”

In the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽) it is written, “There is an old earthen fortress five li north of Jeonju-bu (全州府), it was built by Gyeon-hwon.”

33
往事悠悠疽背翁  왕사유유저배옹  上去平平平去平(東)
繽紛紅葉古城東  빈분홍엽고성동  平平平入上平平
可憐探鷇金山寺  가련탐구금산사  上平平 平平去
亡國何關絶影驄  망국하관절영총  平入平平入上平

wang sa yu yu jeo bae ong
bin bun hong yeop go seong dong
ga ryeon tam gu geum san sa
mang guk ha gwan jeol yeong chong

For an old man suffering an abscess on his back past events grow dim.
To the east of the former fortress [just north of Jeonju] autumn leaves chaotically scatter.
It was pitiful to search for the fledgling birds [the three rebellious sons] at Gold Mountain Temple.
What had a bluish-white horse from Jeolyeong Island to do with the downfall of a country?!

an old man suffering an abscess on his back (疽背翁 저배옹): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “Gyeon-hwon had more than ten sons. His fourth son, Geum-gang (金剛) was tall and wise. Gyeon-hwon loved him and intended to pass on to him the throne, however, Geum-gang’s older brother, Sin-geom (神劍), imprisoned Gyeon-hwon in the Buddha hall (佛宇) of Geumsan-sa temple (金山寺) and, killing Geumgang, declared himself high king (大王). Gyeon-hwon fled to Goryeo (高麗) together with his youngest son Neung-ye (能乂), his daughter Soe-bok (衰福), his favourite concubine (愛妾) Gobi (姑比). Taejo (太祖) of Goryeo treated them with warm etiquette (禮) and elevated [Gyeonhwon] to the rank of sangbu (尙父). Gyeonhwon died at the Buddhist sanctum (佛舍) on Mount Hwang (黃山) when his abscess (疽) burst.”

autumn leaves chaotically scatter (繽粉紅葉 빈분홍엽): in Po’eun Jeong Mong-ju’s (圃隱 鄭夢周) poem Infinite View from the Tower of Jeonju (全州萬景樓) there are the lines, “Buyeo-guk hidden in the green mountains (靑山隱約夫餘國), Baekje Fortress [amongst] the chaotically scattering red leaves (繽粉紅葉百濟城).

a bluish-white horse from Jeolyeong (絶影驄 절영총): according to the Goryeo-sa (History of Goryeo 高麗史), “Gyeonhwon presented Wang Geon Taejo with a bluish-white horse from Jeolyeong-do Island (絶影島) but later it was foretold that, ‘When a horse from Jeolyeong-do arrives, Baekje will collapse.’ Regretting his actions Gyeonhwon sent a messenger requesting the horse be returned. Taejo laughed and granted the request.”

泰封  Taebong [Later Goguryeo founded by Gung-ye]

In the Zizhi Tongjian (Comprehensive Mirror for Governance 資治通鑑) it is written, “At the beginning of the Tianyou (天祐 천우 904-7) year of Tang, a one-eyed monk of Seokgul-sa Temple (石窟寺), Gung-ye (躬乂) raised a group and, occupying Gae-ju (開州), was proclaimed king of Taebong-guk (泰封國). In the Zhenming (貞明 정명 915-20) year of the Later Liang (後粱 후량) [Gung-ye] sent jwarang-wi lieutenant (佐郞尉 좌랑위) Kim Rip-gi (金立奇) to the Wu (吳) to pay tribute.”

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “Gung-ye (弓裔) was from Silla and his father was either Heon An-wang (憲安王 d.861) or Gyeong Mun-wang (景文王 d.875). Shaving his hair he became a monk and took the name (號) Seonjong (宣宗). He was tall and courageous in spirit (膽氣). Towards the end of Silla, many bandits led revolts and Gung-ye joined the army of Bukwon (北原 present day Wonju) bandit Yang-gil (梁吉). Dividing his army, Yang-gil entrusted Gung-ye with [a part of it] and sent him to attack the east. Gung-ye subsequently overthrew the fortresses of Jeojok (猪足), Saengcheon (牲川), Buyak (夫若), Geum-seong (金城) and Cheorwon (鐵圓). In the first year of Tianfu (天福 901-3) he was proclaimed king of Majin (摩震) and took the era name (年號) of Mutae (武泰). Moving more than a thousand families from Cheongju (淸州) he established his capital at Cheorwon Fortress (鐵圓城). Mutae was revised to the first year of Seongchaek (聖冊 905-10) whilst the land to the west of the Pae River was divided into thirteen military jin (鎭). In the first Qianhua (乾化 911-15) year of Liang Emperor Zhu (朱粱 주량), Seongchaek was revised to Sudeok-manse (水德萬歲 911-14) and the name of the country was revised to Taebong (泰封). Declaring himself to be the Maitreya Buddha (彌勒佛), Gung-ye wore a golden cap (金幘) and priest’s robes (方袍). His oldest son was named Cheonggwang Bodhisattva (靑光菩薩) and his youngest son, Sin’gwang Bodhisattva (神光菩薩). When he went out he rode a white horse whose mane and tail were decorated with patterned silk. He had boys and girls go in front with incense and a parasol. He also ordered more than two hundred nuns (比丘尼) to follow behind singing Buddhist chants.”

In the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽) it is written, “Pungcheon-won (楓川原), located twenty li north of Cheorwon-bu (鐵原府), is where Gung-ye established his capital. The site of the palace is still completely intact.”

34
烏鵲飛邊認故宮  오작비변인고궁  上入平平去去平(東)
凄凉覇業黑金東  처량패업흑금동  平平去入入平平
設弧猶記端陽節  설호유기단양절  入平平去平平入
未作鷄林老薛公  미작계림로설공  去入平平上入平

o jak bi byeon in go gung
cheo ryang pae eop heuk geum dong
seol ho yu gi dan yang jeol
mi jak gye rim ro seol gong

One can tell there was formerly a palace around here by the crows and magpies [circling above.]
[One can only be reminded of] the desolate achievements of conquering east of Heijin.
The day the bow was hung up [refers to a custom on the day of birth] is rather remembered for having been Dan’o [5th day of the 5th lunar month].
But [Gung-ye] was unable to become a venerable of Gyerim [Silla] like Mengchang of Qi [who had also been born on the inauspicious day of Dan’o and was initially rejected by his father to be brought up in secret by his mother. n.113]

the crows and magpies (烏鵲): In Songgang Jeong Cheol’s (松江 鄭澈) song Gwandong-byeolgok (關東別曲) there is the line, “As though knowing and not knowing the vicissitudes of ancient times (千古), the crows and magpies bleakly cry at the old palace of King Gung-ye.”

east of Heijin (黑金東 Kr. Heukgeum): according to the ‘Sega’ (Noble Families 世家) chapters of the Goryeo-sa (高麗史), “The Tang merchant (商人), Wang Changjin (王昌瑾), by chance met someone at the market. This person’s appearance was large and impressive and both his hair and beard were white. In his left had he was holding three bowls and in his right an old mirror which was around one ja (尺) in diameter. He asked Changjin, ‘Will you buy my mirror?’ Changjin gave him two mal (斗) of rice in return for the mirror. Walking along the road the man distributed the food to the begging children and left. His speed was like that of a whirlwind. Changjin hung the mirror on the wall of his stall whereupon the sunlight falling at an angle dimly illuminated fine letters which could be read. They said, ‘Amongst the three waters and the four corners (四維 사유= NW, SW, NE and SE), the emperor of heaven (上帝) sent down his two sons, Chen (辰) and Ma (馬). To first catch a chicken and afterwards a duck, this fortune is called filling the one-three jia (一三甲 일삼갑). When dark [one] rises to heaven, when light [one] reigns over the earth. In the year of the rat (子年) great works will be achieved. Hiding one’s tracks and concealing one’s name (姓名), within disorder who can discern restraint (愼) and holiness (聖)? Shaking the thunder of the law (法) and with the flash of the gods’ lightening, in the year of the snake (巳年) two dragons shall appear. One of them will conceal themselves in the green trees; the other will cast a shadow east of Heijin (黑金). Those who are wise will see, those who are foolish will not. Forming clouds and causing rain, it will conquer alongside the people. At times it will appear prosperous (盛) and at times weak (衰). Prosperity and weakness (盛衰) will destroy the bad remnants. Over six years/cycles of the rat (甲子), three or four (三四)) children of the dragon will exchange generations and succeed [one from another]. In these four corners (四維), chou (丑) will be destroyed; crossing the sea and surrendering, one must wait for you (酉). If these letters are seen by a wise king, then the country’s subjects will be peaceful and their sovereign (帝) long prosper. My record in total is a 147 characters.’ Changjin at first had not known that there was writing, but seeing it he realised it was extraordinary and so offered it to Gung-ye. Gung-ye chose Changjin to search for the person [who had sold the mirror] but after a month he was unable to find him. The only thing [discovered] was that at Balsap-sa temple (勃颯寺) in Dong-ju (東州 = Cheorwon) was an old statue of Jinseong (塡星 진[전]성=土星) in front of the statue of Chiseonggwang Bodhisattva (North Star Buddha 熾盛光如來); it resembled the former owner of the mirror and in its left and right hands were a bowl and mirror. Changjin was happy and submitted a detailed account. Sighing in admiration and considering it wondrous, Gung-ye had the text analysed by scholars Song Ham-hong (宋含弘), Baek Tak (白卓) and Heo Won (許原). They said amongst themselves, ‘Chen (辰) and Ma (馬) refer to [Korean] Jinhan (辰韓) and Mahan (馬韓); green trees (靑木) are pine trees and so indicate Song’ak-gun (松嶽郡). Heijin (black gold 黑金) means iron and so is speaking of the present day capital (都) of Cheorwon (lit. ‘iron area’ 鐵圈). This is the place where you, [my] lord (主), first prospered and may eventually be the place of your [or the kingdom’s] demise. To first catch a chicken and then a duck has the meaning of Sijung Wang (王侍中, Gung-ye’s title) having occupied a [new] country, first obtaining Gyerim (Chicken Forest 鷄林, aka Silla) and then up to the Amnok (Duck Green 鴨綠) river.’ Amongst themselves the three conferred, ‘King Gung-ye has much envy and has killed many people, if we were to speak the truth, he would certainly come to harm which we too would not be able to avoid.’ So they gave a false report.”

hanging up the bow on Dan’o (設弧端陽 설호단양): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “Gung-ye was born on the 5th day of the 5th month and already had teeth. Disliking this, King Heon’an (憲安王) ordered him to be killed and so a servant (使者) wrapped the baby in swaddling and threw him down from a tower. A wet nurse (乳母) maidservant (侍婢) secretly caught the babe, but by accident she poked out one of its eyes with her hand.”

Continue to part 6..

Sources: Yu Deukgong’s “Nostalgic Reflections of the Twenty-One Capitals” 二十一都懷古詩 (1792) – part 4 of 6

See Introductionpart 1part 2 and part 3.

新羅  Silla

In the Beishi (北史) it is written, “The ancestors of Silla were originally the people of Jinhan (辰韓). The territory was southeast of Goguryeo and during the Han (漢) it was part of Lelang (樂浪). The king was originally from Baekje. He escaped by sea and came to Silla where he eventually became king.”

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “The surname of the founder of Silla was Bak (朴) and his first name was Hyeokgeose (赫居世). He ascended to the throne on the Byeongjin day (丙辰) in the 4th month of the 1st Wufeng (五鳳 오봉) year of Emperor Xuan-di (宣帝 91–49 BC), and was called Geoseogan (居西干). At the time he was aged thirty-three. Before then the remaining people of Joseon resided in the valleys divided into six villages which were known as the six bu (六部) of Jinhan. [One day] the village head of Goheo (高墟村長), So Beol-gong (蘇伐公), was in the forest beside Najeong (蘿井) at the foot of Mount Yang (陽山), when he saw through the trees a horse whinnying crouched down on its knees. Going to take a closer look, the horse suddenly vanished but left behind a large egg. Breaking open the egg he discovered inside a baby which he took into his care and raised. At the age of ten or so, the boy was already intelligent and precociously talented. The people of the six bu recognizing his divine and supernatural birth respectfully revered him and subsequently made him their ruler. Jinhan people call gourds (瓠 호) bak and because the large egg resembled a gourd, he took the surname Bak (朴). Geoseogan in Jinhan language means ‘king.'”

In the Munheon-pigo (文獻備考) it is written, “Silla was variously called Seoyabeol (徐耶伐), Sara (斯羅) and Saro (斯盧).

In the Donggyeong-japgi (Miscellaneous Records of the East Capital [aka Gyeongju] 東京雜記 it is written, “Gyeongju (慶州) was originally the former capital of Silla.”

21
辰韓六部澹秋烟  진한육부담추연  平平入上上平平(先)
徐菀繁華想可憐  서울번화상가련  平 平平上上平
萬萬波波加號笛  만만파파가호적  去去平平平去入
橫吹三姓一千年  횡취삼성일천년  平平平去入平平

jin han yuk bu dam chu yeon
seo ul beon hwa sang ga ryeon
man man pa pa ga ho jeok
heong chwi sam seong il cheon nyeon

Autumn mists drift across the six bu of Jinhan.
It is sad [now] to think of the prosperity of Seoul [Silla’s capital.]
They called it the Flute of Multitudinous Waves, manman-papa;
For a thousand years it was blown by the three families.

the six bu of Jinhan (辰韓六部): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “The first is Yangsan Village (楊山村) by Al-cheon River (閼川), the second is Goheo Village (高墟村) by Mount Dol (突山), the third is Jinji Village (珍支村) by Mount Ja (觜山), the fourth is Daesu Village (大樹村) by Mount Mu (茂山), the fifth is Gari Village (加利村) by Mount Geum (金山) and the sixth is Goya Village (高耶村) by Mount Myeonghwal (明活山).” These were the six bu of Jinhan.

Seoul (徐菀 서울): according to the Munheon-pigo (文獻備考), “The name of Silla was [also] Seoyabeol (徐耶伐) and so later generations called the capital Seobeol (徐伐) which changed to Seoul.”

Manman-papa (萬萬派派): according to the Donggyeong-japgi (東京雜記), “During the reign of King Sinmun (r. 681–692 神文王) in the middle of the East Sea (東海) was a mountain which shifted with the waves. Thinking it strange, the king took a boat to the mountain where, at the top, he discovered a stork of bamboo growing [there]. Upon crafting the bamboo into a flute and playing it, he found that enemy armies would retreat, diseases would recover, rain would fall at times of drought and during the rainy season the weather would become clear. It could both quieten the wind and calm the waves, and so it was named Manpa-sik-jeok (the Flute that Calms (息) Ten-Thousand Waves 萬波息笛). It was regarded as a treasure and passed down for generations. During the reign of King Hyoso (孝昭王) its name was augmented to Manman-papa (Multitudinous Waves).”

the three families (三姓): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “The surname of the founder of Silla was Bak (朴). The surname of Talhae-isageum was Seok (昔) and that of Michu-isageum was Kim (金).” According to the Jibong-yuseol (Topical Discourses of Jibong 芝峯類說 [written by Jibong I Su-gwang (1563-1628)]), “Silla enjoyed nearly a thousand years of prosperity. Around the time it unified the three Han, life was peaceful and every year was a good harvest; this was known as the Silla age of sages (/golden era 聖代).

22
幾處靑山幾佛幢  기처청산기불당  上去平平上入平(江)
荒池鴈鴨不成雙  황지안압불성쌍  平平去入入平平
春風谷口松花屋  춘풍곡구송화옥  平平入上平平入
時聽寥寥短尾狵  시청요요단미방  平平平平上上平

gi cheo cheong san gi bul dang
hwang ji an ap bul seong ssang
chun pung gok gu song hwa ok
si cheong yo yo dan mi bang

Amongst the many green peaks are many Buddhist temples.
The wild geese and ducks of the desolate [An’ap-ji] pond are unable to find mates.
A spring wind blows across the valley entrance by Pine Flower Hermitage.
At times one can hear the lonely bark of a short tailed
sapsal dog [삽살개.]

wild geese and ducks of the desolate pond (荒池鴈鴨 황지안압): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “The An’ap-ji pond (Goose-Duck Pond 鴈鴨池) is north of Cheonju Temple (天柱寺) in Gyeongju-bu (慶州府). King Munmu (r.661-81) of Silla dug the pond and piled stones to form a mountain resembling the twelve peaks of Mount Wu (巫山). He planted flowers and kept rare birds [there]. To the west is the former site of Imhae-jeon hall (臨海殿).”

Pine Flower Hermitage (松花屋): according to the Donggyeong-jabgi (東京雜記), “When Kim Yu-sin’s (金庾信) wife (or daughter? 宗女), Madam Jaemae (財買夫人) died she was buried in the valley above Cheong-yeon (靑淵) and so it was named Jaemae-gok gorge (財買谷). In spring each year, the men and women from the same family gather at the stream to the south of Jaemae-gok gorge and hold a banquet. At that time all different types of flowers are in bloom and the valley is filled with pine flowers. At the mouth of the valley a hermitage was built called Songhwa-bang (Pine Flower Room 松花房).

a short tailed sapsal (短尾狵 단미방): according to the Donggyeong-jabgi (東京雜記), “Northern Gyeonju is desolate (虛) and so most of the dogs there have short tails and are known as ‘eastern capital [ie Gyeongju] dogs’ (東京狗 동경구).”

23
料峭風中過上元 요초풍중과상원 去 平平去去平(元)
忉忉怛怛踏歌喧 도도달달답가훤 入入 入平平
年年糯飯無人祭 연년나반무인제 平平 去平平去
一陳寒鴉噪別村 일진한아조별촌 入平平平 入平

yo cho pung jung gwa sang won
do do dal dal dap ga hwon
yeon nyeon na ban mu in je
il jin han a jo byeol chon

The first two weeks of the [lunar] new year are spent amongst a chill wind.
Tapping the rhythm with their feet, they sing; anxious and melancholy.
There is no one to perform the yearly rites of offering glutinous rice.
A flock of cold crows squawk [far off] in another village.

anxious and melancholy (忉忉怛怛 도도달달): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Seochul-ji pond (書出池) is to the east of Mount Geum’o (金鰲山) in Gyeonju-bu. On the 15th day in the 1st month of the 10th year of King Soji’s reign (r.479-500), the king visited Cheoncheon-sa temple (天泉寺). A strange event occurred between a crow (烏) and mouse/rat, so the king ordered one of his mounted warriors to chase the crow. Upon the knight arriving at Pi-chon village (避村), [he saw] two pigs fighting one another. Lingering to watch this, he lost track of the crow. Then an old person came out from the pond [there] and offered up [to the knight] a written letter which read on the outside envelope, ‘If opened two people will die, if not opened one person will die.’ The knight galloped back to the king and delivered the letter. The king said, ‘It is better to not open the letter and for one person to die than for two people to die.’ But one of the official ilgwan (日官) soothsayers replied, ‘Two people refers to commoners, but one person refers to the king.’ Agreeing with this, the king opened the letter and found written, ‘Shoot the geomun’go box.’ The king entered the castle and fired an arrow at the geomun’go. [At this time] in the women’s quarters of the palace (內殿) the slave responsible for burning incense (焚修) was having an adulterous relationship with one of the chief palace ladies (could even refer to the queen 宮主 n.66) and plotting treason. The lady and slave were executed whilst the pond was named Seochul-ji (Letter Emerging Pond 書出池).” It further says, “The people of Silla considered that for the king to avoid the calamity (禍) of the geomun’go box, if not for the efforts of the crow, mouse, dragon, horse and pig, the king’s body would have been endangered. Finally the sangja (上子), sangjin (上辰), sang’o (上午) and sanhae (上亥) days of the 1st month (正月) were made days of abstinence when people would avoid all work and not move. In the vernacular, the word dodal (忉怛) refers to something sad and taboo. Also, the 16th day is observed as O’gi-il (Crow Abstinence Day 烏忌日) when glutinous rice (찰밥) is sacrificed to the crows. This national custom continues still today.” According to the Jeompiljae-jip (Collected Works of Jeompiljae [Kim Jong-jik (1431-92)] 佔畢齋集), “The Dodal song (忉怛歌 n.67) goes as follows, ‘Anxious and melancholy, the king was almost unable to preserve [himself]. Inside the tassled silk curtain [n.68], the geomun’go collapsed, the pretty queen [n.69] was unable to grow old with her husband.'”

24
金鰲山色晩蒼蒼  금오산색만창창  平平平入上平平(陽)
渲染鷄林一半霜  선염계림일반상  去上平平入去平
萬疊伽倻人去後  만첩가야인거후  去入平平平去上
至今紅葉上書莊  지금홍엽상서장  去平平入去平平

geum o san saek man chang chang
seon yeom gye rim il ban sang
man cheop ga ya in geo hu
ji geum hong yeop sang seo jang

In evening Golden Turtle Mountain turns a deep green.
Chicken Forest is half dyed in the gradations of frost.
After [Choe Chi-won] left for the deep [valleys of] Mount Gaya,
The leaves are now red at Letter Writing Villa.

Golden Turtle Mountain (金鰲山 금오산): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Mount Geum’o (Golden Turtle) is also known as South Mountain (南山) and is six li south of Gyeongju-bu (慶州府). In a poem the Tang poet Gu Yun (顧雲 고운 n.70) sent to Choe Chi-won (崔致遠 b.857) he wrote, ‘I have heard that above the sea are three golden turtles and on their heads are the tallest of mountains. At the top of the mountains are the Pearl Palace (珠宮 주궁), the Clam Palace (貝闕 패궐) and the Golden Hall (黃金殿). Beneath the palaces are waves stretching out infinitely.'”

Chicken Forest (鷄林 계림 Gyerim): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “In the 3rd spring month of the 9th year of Talhae-isageum’s reign, the king heard the voice of a cockerel calling in Si-rim forest (始林) to the west of the Golden Palace (金城) and so ordered Duke Ho (瓠公) to investigate. [The duke] found a white chicken crowing beneath a branch on which a small golden box was balanced. Returning and reporting what he saw, the king ordered men to bring the box and open it, whereupon they found inside a baby boy of extraordinary and wonderful appearance. The king rejoiced saying, ‘This is surely heaven sending me a son!’ He took the baby in and raised it. Growing up the boy was intelligent and possessed much wisdom and so was named Al-ji (閼智). As he came out of a golden box, he was given the surname Kim (金). Si-rim forest was renamed Gye-rim (Chicken Forest), which also became the name of the country (Silla).”

Gaya (伽倻): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Mount Gaya is 30 li to the north of Hapcheon-gun (陜川郡). It is also called Mount Udu (牛頭山).”

Letter Writing Villa (上書莊): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “Choi Chi-won’s pen names were Go-un (孤雲) and Hae-un (海雲). He was from Saryang-bu (沙梁部). At the age of twelve, he accompanied an envoy by boat to Tang. In the 1st Qianfu year (乾符 건부, 874) he passed the examination held under (/for becoming?) the Ritual Department Libushilang-peizan (禮部侍郞 裵瓚 예부시랑 배찬), and became lieutenant of Lishui-xian county (凓水縣尉). Passing the kaoshi examination (考試) he was made chengwurang-shiyushi- neigongfeng (乘務郞 侍御史 內供奉 승무랑 시어사 내공봉) and then had the purple and gold fish robes (紫金魚袋) conferred upon him. During the Huang Chao (874-84) (黃巢 황소) rebellion Gao Pian (高騈 고변 d.887, ‘former Prince of Bohai’ n.71) was made Grand Marshall of Everywhere (諸道行營兵馬都統 zhudao-xingying-bingma-doutong) and when suppressing Huang Chao, made Chiwon a congshi (從事) officer. In the 1st Guangqi (光啓 광계) year (885), Choi Chiwon was called back by royal edict [to Silla] and became both a sidok (侍讀) and hallim-haksa scholar-official (翰林學士). Leaving the capital, he became magistrate of Tae-san (太山太守 present day Tae’in 泰仁 n.72). From the time he went west to serve the Tang until he returned to his former country [Silla] in the east, he met with all manner of difficulties and so did not intend again to pursue officialdom. Together with his family he retired to Haein-sa temple (海印寺 n.73) and lived out the rest of his life free and relaxed.” According to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Sangseo-jan (Letter Writing Villa 上書莊) is to the north of Mount Geum’o. When Taejo of Goryeo [aka Wang Geon (877-943)] rose to power, knowing that he would be ordered (back to office) Choe Chiwon wrote a letter to the king (上書), ‘Gyerim is a yellow leaf but Gong-nyeong (鵠嶺 곡령 = Song’ak 松嶽 = Goryeo, see poem 43) is a green pine.’ Later generations named the place where he resided Letter Writing [to the king] Villa.” 

25
城南城北蔚藍峯  성남성북울람봉  平平平入入平平(冬)
落日昌林寺裏鐘  낙일창림사리종  入入平平去上平
閒補東京書畵傳  한보동경서화전  平上上平平去去
金生碑版率居松  김생비판솔거송  平平平上入平平

seong nam seong buk ul ram bong
nak il chang rim sa ri jong
han bo dong gyeong seo hwa jeon
gim saeng bi pan sol geo song

Mountain peaks lush with vegetation [rise] both to the south and north of the fortress.
At sunset the bell sounds at Changnim-sa temple.
The books and paintings of the Eastern Capital [Gyeongju] are leisurely restored [and so] passed down.
[They remind us of] Kim Saeng’s stone monument and Sol Geo’s pine trees.

Kim Saeng (金生 711-91): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “From an early age, Kim Saeng was skillful at calligraphy. Throughout his life he never studied any other art. Even past the age of 80, far from laying down his brush, he was a godly master in all three styles yeseo (隸書), haengseo (行書) and choseo (草/艸書). During the Chongning (崇寧 숭녕) reign period [of Song emperor Huizong (徽宗)] (1102-06), chunghaksa scholar (中學士) Hong Gwan (洪灌 d.1126 calligrapher, n.75) accompanied an official mission (奉仕 봉사) to Song and, whilst staying in Bianjing (汴京 변징, modern Kaifeng), hanlin-daizhao (翰林待詔 한림대조) Yang Qiu (楊球) and Li Ge (李革 n.76) visited with a letter from the emperor (勅書) and [whilst there they] painted a picture scroll. Hong Gwan showed them a sheet of Kim Saeng’s haeng-cho (行艸) [calligraphy] at which the two were greatly surprised and said, ‘Today we have unexpectedly seen the calligraphy of You Jun (右軍 303–61 n.77)!’ Hong Gwan replied, ‘This is the calligraphy of none other than Kim Saeng of Silla!’ But the two would not believe him.” In the epilogue (跋文) of the commemorative stone at Changnim-sa temple (昌林寺), Zhao Zi-ang (趙子昻, 1254-1322) wrote, ‘[Calligraphy as fine as] You (右) was written by a Silla monk of Tang, Kim Saeng. The character strokes on the commemorative stone of Changnim-sa Temple in his country [Silla] have depth and form (典型) such that even a famous calligraphic engraver of Tang would not be able to greatly surpass it. Did not the ancients say, ‘Talented people may be born in any land’? I believe it to be so.” According to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Changnim-sa temple (昌林寺) was located on Mount Geum’o but today is ruined. There is an old stone (碑) there but it has no writing.”

Sol Geo (率居): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “Sol Geo was good at painting and early on he painted on the wall of Hwangnyong-sa temple (黃龍寺 n.79) the body, trunk, scales (鱗) and wrinkles of an old pine tree. Every now and then crows and kites spying the pine would try to fly and land on it but would fall down the wall. After a long time the colour began to fade and so the monks of the temple restored it with dancheong (丹靑) paint, but after that the crows and kites no longer came. The pictures of Avalokiteśvara (觀音) at Bunhwan-sa temple (芬皇寺 n.80) in Gyeonju and the portrait of Vimalakīrti (維摩像 유마상) at Dansok-sa (斷俗寺 n.81) in Jinju (晉州) are also by his brush.”

26
三月初旬去踏靑  삼월초순거답청  平入平平去入平(靑)
蚊川花柳鎖冥冥  문천화류쇄명명  平平平上上平平
流觴曲水傷心事  유상곡수상심사  平平入上平平去
休上春風鮑石亭  휴상춘풍포석정  平上平平上入平

sam wol cho sun geo dap cheong
mun cheon hwa ryu swae myeong myeong
yu sang gok su sang sim sa
hyu sang chun pung po seok jeong

In spring [the first ten days of the third lunar month], [King Gyeong-ae, penultimate king of Silla (r. 924–927)] was out enjoying the new foliage.
By Mosquito Stream, the flowers and willows are darkly locked together.
Whilst playing a game of floating wine cups, they met with sorrow.
Do not ascend to Abalone Stone Platform when the spring wind blows!

Mosquito Stream (蚊川): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Mun-cheon stream (蚊川) is 5 li to the south of Gyeongju-bu, it is downstream of Sadeung-cheon stream (史等川). There is a poem by Kim Geuk-gi (金克己 1148-1209) of Goryeo that speaks of the Mun-cheon stream Bulgye festival game [composing poems before a wine cup floats past you] (蚊川祓禊 n.83).”

Abalone Stone Platform (鮑石亭 포석정): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Poseok-jeong is seven li south of Gyeongju-bu at the base of the western side of Mount Geum’o. The rocks have been arranged in the shape of an abalone (鮑) after which it is named. It is clearly the remains of where wine cups were floated along the winding water (流觴曲水).” According to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “Gyeon Hwon (甄萱 867-936) suddenly invaded the Silla capital at which time the king and queen and ladies in waiting (嬪御) were out at Poseok-jeong enjoying wine. Having been invaded, they were in a fix and were not sure what to do. All the lords, retainers, palace women and officers were captured and died [King Gyeong’ae committed suicide].”

溟州  Myeongju

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “When King Seondeok (r.780–785) of Silla died he had no son and so a group of his vassals discussed together and decided to make an indirect descendant (族子) of Seondeok, Ju-won (周元), their king. Ju-won was living 20 li to the north of the capital, but just at that time heavy rain fell and swelled the Al-cheon river (閼川) preventing him from crossing. Someone then said, ‘Perhaps heaven is trying to stop Ju-won becoming king. Daesangdeung (大上等) Gyeong-sin (aka King Wonseong 敬信) was the younger brother of the former king and he has the countenance of a ruler.’ Upon deciding to enthrone him the rain stopped and so all the subjects of the kingdom shouted out manse!

In the Yeoji-ji (輿地志) it is written, “Fearing disaster, Ju-won withdrew to Myeoungju and was not invited to the court. Two years later he was enfeoffed as king of Myeongju-gun (溟州郡) which was divided into the fiefdoms (食邑) of Myeongju, Ingnyeong (翼嶺 익령, [modern day Yangyang]), Samcheok (三陟), Geun’eur’eo (斤乙於) [modern day Pyeonghae] and Uljin (蔚珍).”

In the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考) it is written, “Myeongju is present day Gangneung-bu (江陵府).”

27
雞林眞骨大王親  계림진골대왕친  平平平入去平平(眞)
九雉分供左海濱  구치분공좌해빈  上上平平上上平
最憶如花池上女  최억여화지상녀  去入平平平去上
魚書遠寄倦遊人  어서원기권유인  平平上去去平平

gye rim jin gol dae wang chin
gu chi bun gong jwa hae bin
choe eok yeo hwa ji wang nyeo
eo seo won gi gwon yu in

[Kim Juwon] was a True Bone rank (眞骨) of Gyerim and a close relative to the king (Seondeok who died without issue.)
Royal food provision was divided and given to [Kim Juwon] beside the left [i.e. eastern] sea.
[Myeongju] makes one think most of the girl by the lilly pond
Who sent a letter faraway by fish to the man she had promised herself to.

True Bone (眞骨): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “Sadaham (斯多含) was of True Bone lineage. Seol Gye-du (薛罽頭 d.645 note84) said, ‘When appointments are made in Silla, they take into consideration their golpum bone rank status (骨品).'” Ling Hu-cheng (令狐澄 영호징) wrote in the Xinluoguo-ji (History of Silla 新羅國記), “In that country (신라), the king is First Bone rank (第一骨) and the rest of the aristocracy is Second Bone rank (第二骨).”

“royal food provision” guchi (九雉): according to the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考), “According to the Silla system, each day the king would eat three mal (斗 두) of rice and nine male pheasants (九雉).”

send a letter far away by fish (漁書遠寄 어서원기): according to the ‘Ak-ji’ chapter of the Goryeo-sa (Records of Music in the History of Goryeo 高麗史樂志), “In the Goguryeo folk music section (高句麗 俗樂部) is the song Myeongju-gok (Myeongju Melody 溟州曲). It is said that a young scholar (書生) was travelling for study when he arrived in Myeongju and saw the daughter of a well-to-do house who had a beautiful body and complexion. She also knew how to write. The young scholar kept writing her poems to try and seduce her, to which the girl replied, ‘A lady (婦女子) cannot pursue a stranger. Wait until you have passed the exam and if my parents order [our marriage] then something will happen.’ The young scholar soon returned to the capital and prepared for the gwago civil service examination. At the girls’ house [meanwhile] they started to welcome a future son-in-law. The girl raised fish in a pond and when they heard the sound of coughing they knew that food was coming. Feeding the fish, the girl said, ‘I have raised you for a long time, so you should understand my intentions (意).’ She threw in a silk letter (帛書) and a large fish jumped out and swallowed it before leisurely swimming away. Whilst in the capital, one day the young student bought a fish to feed his parents and when he cut open its stomach, he discovered inside a silk letter. Surprised and considering it wondrous, he immediately took the silk letter and a letter written by his father, and went straight to the girl’s house but found the intended future son-in-law had already arrived. He showed the letters to the girl’s family and sung this [Myeongju-gok] song. Thinking it wondrous, the girl’s parents said, ‘This has the feeling of sincere devotion (精誠) and is not something that can be done through [mere] human effort.’ Sending away the other man, they welcomed the young scholar as their son-in-law.”

According to the Ganggye-ji (Record of Borderlands 疆界志 n.86), “The younger brother of the Silla king, Muwol-lang (無月郞 무월랑 n.87), had two sons. The eldest was Ju-won (周元 n.88) and the second Gyeong-sin (敬信). Their mother was born in Myeongju and because she originally lived beneath Yeonhwa-bong peak (Lotus Peak 蓮花峯 연화봉) she was known as Madam Yeonhwa (n.89). When Ju-won became ruler of Myeongju, his mother lived under his support. The Myeongju-gok (n.90) is about Madam Yeonhwa and the young scholar is Muwol-lang. Also, because Myeongju was established during the Silla period, it is not a Goguryeo period name and so naturally Myeongju-gok is classified as a Silla song (新羅樂).”

Continue to part 5..

Sources: Yu Deukgong’s “Nostalgic Reflections of the Twenty-One Capitals” 二十一都懷古詩 (1792) – part 3 of 6

See Introductionpart 1 and part 2.

百濟  Baekje

In the Nanshi (History of the Southern Dynasties 南史) it is written, “Mahan was composed of fifty-four states (國) of which Baekje was one. Later on it gradually became stronger and absorbed the other smaller countries.”

In the Beishi (History of the Northern Dynasties 北史) it is written, “Baekje was a part of Mahan. The country was named Baekje (百 hundred + 濟 to cross) as it was established when a hundred families crossed the river [into the territory]. Its capital fortress was Geobal Fortress (居拔城), also known as Goma Fortress (固麻城).”

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “The founder of Baekje, King Onjo (溫祚王 r.18 BC–AD 28) established the capital Wirye Fortress (慰禮城) in Hanam (河南). Ten vassals supported the king and so the country’s name was made as Sipje (十濟, 十 ten + 濟 to help). It was the 3rd Hongjia (鴻嘉 홍가) year of Han emperor Cheng (成帝). Later on, commoners gladly came to submit to the king and so the country was renamed Baekje (百濟). Together with Goguryeo, the line of descent traced back to Buyeo, so Buyeo was used as the surname. In the 13th year of King Onjo’s reign, he built a wooden fence at the bottom of Mount Han (漢山) and in the 14th year, moved the capital [there]. In the 5th year of King Gaeru (蓋婁王 r.128–166), the Bukhan-san Fortress (北漢山城) was built and in the 26th year of King Geunchogo (近肖古王 r.346-375), the capital was moved to Mount Han. In the first year of King Munju (文周王 r.475-477), the capital was moved to Ungjin (熊津). Then in the 6th year of King Seong (聖王 r.523–554), the capital was moved to Sabi (泗沘) and the country named South Buyeo (南夫餘).”

In the Munheon-bigo (文獻備考) it is written, “Soburi-gun (所夫里郡) in Baekje was also called Sabi. It is present day Buyeo-hyeon (夫餘縣).”

16
歌樓舞殿向江開  가루무전향강개  平平上去去平平(灰)
半月城頭月影來  반월성두월영래  去入平平入上平
紅㲮𣰆寒眠不得  홍탑등한면부득  平入平平平入入
君王愛在自溫臺  군왕애재자온대  平平去上去平平 

ga ru mu jeon hyang gang gae
ban wol seong du wol yeong rae
hong tap deung han myeon bu deuk
gun wang ae jae ja on dae

A singing pagoda and dancing palace opens towards the river.
The top of Banwol Fortress [refers to Baekje’s last capital Sabi] is silhouetted against the moon.
The red carpet [mattress] is cold and [the king] cannot sleep.
The [last] king [of Baekje, Uija] loved to be on the Jaondae [rock].

Banwol Fortress (半月城): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Banwol Fortress in Buyeo-hyeon (夫餘縣) was built of stone and 13,006 cheok (尺 1=30cm 3.9km) in circumference. It is the capital of former Baekje. Built hugging the side of Mount Buso (扶蘇山), both ends reach to Baekma River (White Horse River 白馬江) and so it forms the shape of a half moon.”

the Jaondae “self-heating” rock (自溫臺): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Jaondae is five li to the west of Buyeo-hyeon. The rock is in the water downstream to the west of Nakhwa-am (Falling Flower Rock (落花巖). It is large enough for more than ten people to sit on it. It has been passed down that, ‘When the Baekje king relaxed (遊) on the rock, it became warm by itself.'”

17
落日扶蘇數點峯  낙일부소수점봉  入入平平去上平(冬)
天寒白馬怒濤洶  천한백마노도흉  平平入上去平平
奈何不用成忠策  내하불용성충책  去平入去平平入
却恃江中護國龍  각시강중호국룡  入上平平去入平

nak il bu so su jeom bong
cheon han baek ma no do hyung
nae ha bu yong seong chung chaek
gak si gang jung ho guk ryong

Sun sets [behind] the peaks of Mount Buso [the location of the final royal Baekje fortress].
[Beneath] the cold sky, the White Horse River angrily froths.
How could he fail to hark on loyal vassal Seongchung’s advice?
Yet he believed the dragon in the river would [be enough to] protect his kingdom!

Buso (扶蘇): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Mount Buso is three li (1.2km) to the north of Buyeo-hyeon. The easternmost peak is called Yeongwol-dae (Moon Welcoming Platform 迎月臺) and the westernmost peak Songwol-dae (Seeing off the Moon Platform 送月臺).”

loyal vassal Seongchung (成忠): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “In the 16th year of King Uija (義慈王 r.641–660), jwa’pyeong (佐平) Seongchung (d.656) offered up a memorial to the king saying, ‘Having studied the propriety of times, war is certain now to arise. If an invading army comes, do not allow them to cross the Chim-hyeon pass (沈峴) by land or to enter Gibeol-po harbour (岐伐浦) by water. Only through [facing] danger will defence be possible.’ However, the king did not respond. Only when the Tang army bore down upon the fortress did the king lament, ‘I regret I did not listen to Seongchung’s counsel!'”

the dragon would protect the kingdom (護國龍): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Beneath Mount Buso is a rock which straddles the river and has dragon claw marks in it. It is commonly told that, ‘When Su Dingfang (蘇定方 591–667) invaded Baekje, upon arriving at the river he attempted to cross but powerful wind and rain prevented him; using a white horse as bait, he caught a dragon [from the river] which caused the storm to briefly subside allowing his soldiers to cross. On account of this the river is named Baekma-gang (White Horse River 白馬江), and the stone is called Joryong-dae (Fishing Dragon Platform 釣龍臺).'”

18
雨冷風凄去國愁  우냉풍처거국수  上上平平去入平(尤)
巖花落盡水悠悠  암화낙진수유유  平平入上上平平
泉臺寂寞誰相伴  천대적막수상반  平平入入平平上
同是江南歸命侯  동시강남귀명후  平上平平平去平

u naeng pung cheo geo guk su
am hwa nak jin su yu yu
cheon dae jeok mak su sang ban
dong si gang nam gwi myeong hu

In cold rain and chill wind, it is sad to leave your country.
Flowers [palace women] fell from the rock and expired; the water [now] flows gently by.
The Otherworld is lonely and dreary, who may accompany him [the last Baekje king, Uija] there?
He’ll be together with Sun Hao [Marquess Guiming] on the south bank.

flowers from the rock (巖花): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Nakhwa-am (Falling Flower Rock (落花巖) is one li north of Buyeo-hyeon. It is commonly told that, ‘When King Uija was defeated by the Tang army, the palace ladies climbed to the top of the rock and jumped into the river and that is how it got its name.'”

Marquess Guiming (歸命侯): according to the Tangshu (唐書), “In the 5th Xianqing year (顯慶 현경, 660) Great General of the Left Defence (左衛大將軍), Su Dingfang, was made Field Marshall of Shenqiu-dao (神邱道行軍總管) and ordered to attack Baekje. Crossing the sea from Mount Seong (城山), Baekje was defending the entrance to Ung-jin harbour (熊津) and so Su Dingfang immediately attacked and destroyed their defenses. Riding on the tide, they advanced and forced the surrender of the fortress. King Uija was captured and sent back to the [Tang] capital (京師) whilst governor-generals (都督) were placed in the five gun (郡) of Ungjin (熊津), Mahan (馬韓), Dongmyeong (東明), Geum’yeon (金漣) and Deok’an (德安). King Uija died of anguish and was given the (Tang?) rank of weiweiqing (‘Minister of the Guards’ 衛尉卿 위위경). His former vassals were permitted to conduct his funeral but ordered by imperial edict to hold the funeral to the left of Sun Hao (孫皓 손호, aka Marquess Guiming, 242–84 n.56) and Chen Shubao’s (陳叔寶, 553–604 n.57) graves [two former corrupt rulers of Wu (吳) and Chen (陳) who had been defeated and taken back to the victor’s capital where they died].

19
浴槃零落涴曣脂  욕반영낙완연지  入平平入 平(支)
石室藏書事可疑  석실장서사가의  入入平平去上平
時見荒原秋草裏  시견황원추초리  平去平平平上上
行人駐馬讀唐碑  행인주마독당비  平平去上入平平

yok ban yeong nak wan yeon ji
seok sil jang seo sa ga wi
si gyeon hwang won chu cho ri
haeng in ju ma dok dang bi

The wash basin is old and worn [but] yeonji make-up stains [remain.]
They say that books were stored in the Stone Room, but this seems doubtful.
At times visible in the autumn grasses of the desolate fields,
Passersby stop their horses and read the Tang stele.

the wash basin (浴槃): according to the Buyeohyeon-ji (Record of Buyeo-hyeon 夫餘縣志), “In the garden of the county office (縣廳) is a stone basin. When public business is conducted at night a pine torch is sometimes lit above it so it has become blackened with soot and cracked; but still a carved lotus flower pattern is faintly [visible]. It is said that this was the wash basin used by the palace ladies of Baekje.”

books stored in the stone room (石室藏書): according to the Buyeohyeon-ji (夫餘縣志), “To the east of Pungjeon-yeok horse station (豊田驛) in Buyeo-hyeon, is a high stone wall which, where it has been broken, has the form of a door; it is called Cheag’am (Book Rock 冊巖). It is commonly said that, ‘In Baekje times this is where books were stored.’ In past times somebody tried to open it and look inside but in spite of it being a clear day thunder rolled and, becoming frightened, they desisted.”

Tang stele (唐碑): according to the Buyeohyeon-ji (夫餘縣志), “Two li to the south of Buyeo-hyeon is a stone pagoda which has carved on it, ‘Stone [commemorating] the subjugation of Baekje by the Great Tang, erected on the 15th day of the 8th month in the 5th year of Xianqing (顯慶 현경), Gengshen (庚申 경신), Guiwei (癸未 계미). It was made by Jian-shi of Ling-zhou (陵州長史) Bingcao-panshu (‘Minister of War’ 兵曹判書) He Suiliang (賀遂亮 하수량) and written by Quan Huaisu (權懷素 권회소) of Luo-zhou (落州) in Henan (河南).’ It records the exploits of Su Dingfang. The calligraphy is pianli-ti style (駢儷體 변려체) and, being written well, is naturally the best example of calligraphy on old stones found in Korea. There is another commemorative stone three li (1.2km) north of Buyeo-hyeon that records the exploits of Liu RenYuan (劉仁願 유인원 n.59) but the middle section has broken off and many of the characters are worn.”

彌鄒忽  Michuhol [modern day Incheon]

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “When Jumong escaped from North Buyeo (北夫餘) and came to Jolbon Buyeo (卒本夫餘), the Buyeo king married his daughter to Jumong. Upon the death of the Buyeo king, Jumong ascended to the throne and had two sons named Biryu (沸流) and Onjo (溫祚). Jumong’s son previously born in North Buyeo arrived and was made crown prince. Fearing that they would not be accepted by the crown prince, Biryu and Onjo, together with ten vassals including Ogan (烏干) and Maryeo (馬黎), moved south and were followed by many subjects. Arriving at Mount Han (漢山) they climbed up Bu’a-ak peak (負兒岳, present day Insu-bong peak on Bukhan-san said to have resembled a parent carrying a child on their back and thus named as such, n60) and looked out over land [that appeared] suitable for living, but Biryu wanted to live by the sea, whereupon his ten retainers said, ‘Only here, in Hanam (河南) is the north bordered by the Han-su river (漢水), the east protected by high mountains, the south overlooking fertile land and the west ending in the ocean. What better place could there be to establish your capital?’ But Biryu did not listen and divided their followers; Biryu went on to Michuhol whilst Onjo established his capital at Wirye Fortress (慰禮城) in Hanam. In Michuhol the land was damp and the water salty. Unable to live there Biryu returned to Wirye Fortress, and finding it stable and the people peaceful he became regretful before dying.”

In the Yeoji-ji (Geographical Records 輿地志) it is written, “Ten li (4km) to the south of current day Incheon-bu (仁川府) there is a large grave at the top of Haepyeong (海坪). The perimeter wall remains intact; the stone grave statues (石人, 망두석) lying face down are especially big. It is said that this is the grave of the king of Michu.”

20
浿上悲歌別弟兄  패상비가별제형  去去平平入去平(庚)
登山臨水汨南征  등산임수골남정  平平平上上平平
三韓地劣姜肱被  삼한지열강굉피  平平去入平平上
休築崢嶸恚忿城  휴축쟁영에분성  平入去平 去平

pae sang bi ga byeol je hyeong
deung san im su gol nam jeong
sam han ji yeol gang goeng pi
hyu chuk jaeng yeong e bun seong

Above the waters of Pae the brothers parted with a sad song.
Climbing the mountain and looking down upon the water [Biryu] became infatuated with the southern road.
The land of the Three Han could not match the bed clothes of Jianggong (姜肱 강굉) [refers to Jianggong of the Eastern Han (東漢), who loved his two younger brothers Zhonghai (仲海) and Jijiang (季江) and would sleep under the same blanket, n61.]
So Biryu should not have [attempted] to build his towering Resentment Fortress.

Resentment Fortress (恚忿城 에분성): according to the Yeoji-ji (輿地志), “To the south of current day Incheon-bu is a mountain named South Mountain (南山) It is also know as Mount Munhak (文鶴山) and there is a fortress built on it. It is said that this is the place of Biryu’s capital and because he died of resentment, it was called Ebun-seong (Resentment Fortress).”

Continue to part 4..

Sources: Yu Deukgong’s “Nostalgic Reflections of the Twenty-One Capitals” 二十一都懷古詩 (1792) – part 2 of 6

See Introduction and part 1.

高句麗 Goguryeo

In the Weishu (Book of Wei 魏書) it is written, “Goguryeo emerged from Buyeo and they said themselves that their founder was Jumong (朱蒙). Jumong’s mother was the daughter of Habaek (河伯); the Buyeo king confined her in a room, but there the sun shone and where her body avoided the sun, its shadow too pursued. She became pregnant and laid an egg the size of five doe (升 승, small measuring container). Wrapping it in a towel she kept it in a warm place until a young man broke out of the shell. Growing up he was given the name Jumong which according to tradition refers to one who is good at archery. When Buyeo vassals plotted to kill him, Jumong fled to the southeast together with O In (烏引) and O Wi (烏違). Reaching a wide body of water they were unable to cross but were being chased by Buyeo men. Jumong declared to the water, ‘I am son of the sun and the maternal grandson (外孫) of Habaek. At the moment we are fleeing but being chased by soldiers. How can we cross?’ At this the fish and turtles lined up to form a floating bridge over which Jumong [and his friends] crossed before the fish and turtles scattered such that the pursuing mounted soldiers were unable to cross. Finally arriving at Bosul-su (普述水), Jumong met three people. One wore hemp clothing, another a priest’s robes, and the third garments with a water chestnut pattern [or colour]. Reaching Heulseunggol Fortress (訖升骨城) they resided there and, calling it Goguryeo, took the surname Go (高).”

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “The founder of Goguryeo was Sage King Dongmyeong (東明聖王 lit. ‘Eastern Light’) whose surname was Go. Seeing the impregnability (險固) of the terrain (山河) between Buyeo and Jolbon Stream (卒本川) he built a grass hut (廬 려) at Biryu-su River (沸流水) intending to establish there the capital. At this time he was aged 22 and it was the 2nd year of Han emperor Yuan’s (元帝) reign (37BC). In the 22nd year of King Yuri’s (瑠璃王) reign, the capital was moved to Gungnae-seong (國內城) and there Wina’am Fortress (慰那巖城) was built. In the 13th year of King Sansang’s (山上王) reign the capital was moved to Hwando (丸都) and then during the 21st year of King Dongcheon’s (東川王) reign, Pyeongyang Fortress was built and the people moved there together with the temple shrines (廟社 묘사).”

In the Tongdian (Comprehensive Encyclopedia 通典) it is written, “Goguryeo had its capital at Pyeongyang since [the time of] the Eastern Jin (東晋 동진).”

9
弧矢橫行十九年  호시횡행십구년  平上去平入上平(先)
麒麟寶馬去朝天  기린보마거조천  平平上上去平平
千秋覇氣凉于水  천추패기량우수  平平去去平平上
墓裏消沈白玉鞭  묘리소침백옥편  去上平平入入平

ho si hoeng haeng sip gu nyeon
gi rin bo ma geo jo cheon
cheon chu pae gi ryang u su
myo ri so chim baek ok pyeon

For nineteen years [Jumong] went around [renowned] for his archery [before being forced to flee.]
Riding on his fine
girin steed, [Jumong] left [the world] through the Stone of Heavenly Ascension.
The vigour [of Goguryeo] that lasted a thousand autumns is [now] as cold as water.
[Only] a white jade handled whip [lies] decaying in [his] tomb.

fine girin steed (麒麟寶馬): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Girin Cave (麒麟窟 기린굴) is beneath Bu’byeok Tower (浮碧樓 부벽류) inside Guje Palace (九梯宮) in Pyeongyang-bu. Here King Dongmyeong (東明王) kept his girin steed (麒麟馬). It is said, ‘King Dongmyeong rode his girin steed into the tunnel and emerging from the ground through the Jocheon Stone (Stone of Heavenly Ascension 朝天石), he ascended to heaven.’ Hoof prints still remain on the stone which is to the south of Girin Cave.”

a white jade handled whip (白玉鞭): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “King Dongmyeong’s grave is on Mount Yong (龍山) in Junghwa-bu (中和府) and is colloquially called Jinju-myo (眞珠墓). It has been passed down that, ‘The founder of Goguryeo always mounted a girin steed and rode up to heaven to report on his deeds, but when he reached the age of forty, he no longer returned. The crown prince took the jade whip (玉鞭 옥편) left behind and carried out ancestral rites on Mount Yong.”

10
昔日夫餘挾彈兒  석일부여협탄아  入入平平入平平(支)
東明王子號琉璃  동명왕자호유리  平平平上去平平
數聲黃鳥啼深樹  수성황조제심수  去平平上平平去
猶似禾姬罵雉姬  유사화희매치희  平上平平去上平 

seok il bu yeo hyeop tan a
dong myeong wang ja ho yu ri
su seong hwang jo je sim su
yu sa hwa hwi mae chi hwi

There was once a boy in Buyeo who carried a slingshot.
He was the son of King Dongmyeong [Jumong] and called Yuri.
Many voices of black-naped orioles sing deep amongst the trees,
Just as when Queen Hwa insulted Queen Chi.

a boy who carried a slingshot (挾彈兒): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “King Yuri’s (瑠璃王) name was Yuri (類利). When Jumong was still in Puyeo he married a lady of the name Ye (禮씨) who showed signs of pregnancy. After Jumong left, she gave birth to a boy called Yuri (類利). One day when he was young, whilst out playing on a hill he fired [a sling shot] at a bird but missed and hit the bucket of a woman drawing water from a pump by accident. Angrily she said, ‘It is because this child has no father that he is unruly (頑 완) like this.’ Ashamed, Yuri went home and asked his mother, ‘Who is my father, and where is he now?’ His mother replied, ‘Your father is not a normal man and so he was not accepted here and he fled south, established a new country and proclaimed himself king.’ Together with three friends, Okji (屋智), Guchu (句鄒) and Dojo (都祖) he went to Jolbon (卒本) and there met with his father becoming the crown prince.”

black-naped oriole (黃鳥): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “King Yuri had two wives: one called Hwa-hui (禾姬), the daughter of a Golcheon man (鶻川人), and the other Chi-hui (雉姬), the daughter of a Han (漢人). The two fought for [Yuri’s] affections. The king built two palaces in the east and west of Yang-gok Valley (凉谷). Later on, one day when the king went out hunting on Mount Gi (箕山), Hwa-hui rebuked Chi-hui saying, ‘You are a Han concubine, how can you be so impolite (無禮)?!’ Embarrassed and angry, Chi-hui fled and returned home [to Han China? Or the queens were on the hunting trip?]. Hearing this, the king whipped his horse and pursued after, but Chi-hui remained angry and would not return. Resting under a tree he heard the twittering of black-naped orioles whereupon he was moved to sing, ‘The fluttering orioles, female and male hold affection for [lit. ‘rely on’] one another. Thinking of my [own] loneliness; with whom will it [that is my lonely heart] go home?‘ (翩翩黃鳥 雌雄相依 念我之獨 誰其與歸)”

11
鷄立山前漲戰塵  계립산전창전진  平入平平去去平(眞)
丹㫌依戀沁園春  단정의연심원춘  平平平去去平平
平生慷慨愚溫達  평생강개우온달  平平平去平平入
自是龍鐘可笑人  자시용종가소인  去上平平上去平 

gye rip san jeon chang jeon jin
dan jeong wi yeon sim won chun
pyeong saeng gang gae u on dal
ja si yong jong ga so in

The dust of war spreads before Mount Gyerip [where Ondal died fighting in his attempt to invade Silla].
The red banner [of Ondal?] still loves King Pyeongwon’s daughter [or lit. “spring in the princess’s garden”].
Throughout his life, he was resented as Ondal the Fool,
To be sure, his appearance was so gaunt that people would laugh [at him].

Mount Gyerip (鷄立山): according to Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Mount Gyerip is 20 li (50km) north of Mun’gyeong-hyeon (聞慶縣 문경현). It is also commonly known as Mount Magol (麻骨山) which in the local dialect sounds similar.”

Ondal the Fool (愚溫達 우온달): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “Ondal’s appearance was uncouth and laughable. His family was poor so he supported his parents by begging. When he went to the market wearing an old summer jacket (적삼) and worn out shoes, others would point and say, ‘Ondal the Fool!’ King Pyeonggang’s (平崗王 r.559-90) daughter used to often cry. Jokingly the king would say, ‘You are always crying, my ears ache! When you grow up you will hardly make a nobleman’s wife, I’ll surely have to marry you to Ondal the Fool!” When the princes’s age reached 16, the king planned to marry her to a high ranking (上部) retainer by the name of Go (高씨), however, she declared, ‘The king has always said that I would become the wife of Ondal, for what reason has he gone back on his words?’ Angrily the king retorted, ‘Go where you please!’ The princess put on several tens of jeweled bracelets up to her elbows, left the palace and went to Ondal’s home. When Emperor Wu (武帝 r.561-78) of the Later Zhou (後周) invaded Liaodong, King Pyeonggang fought in battle against him on the plain of Mount Yi (肄山 이산). Ondal led the van and fought like a hurricane achieving the greatest merit. King Pyeonggang joyfully exclaimed, ‘He is my son-in-law!’ He bestowed on him the rank of daehyeong (大兄). When King Yanggang (陽崗王) ascended to the throne, Ondal asked to attack Silla to which the king agreed. Upon setting out Ondal swore, ‘I will not return unless we are unable to recapture Gyerip-hyeon (鷄立峴 계립현) and west of Jungnyeong (竹嶺 죽령).’ Eventually he was killed in battle against Silla by an arrow. When they tried to prepare for the funeral, his coffin would not move. The princess came and stroking the coffin said, ‘Death and life are already decided. Ah, come home!’ Only then could they bury the coffin.”

12
遼海歸旌數片紅  요해귀정수편홍  平上平平去去平(東)
湯湯薩水捲沙蟲  탕탕살수권사충  平平入上上平平
乙支文德眞才士  을지문덕진재사  入平平入平平上
倡五言時冠大東  창오언시관대동  去上平平去去上 

yo hae gwi jeong su pyeon hong
tang tang sal su gwon sa chung
eul ji mun deok jin jae sa
chang o eon si gwan dae dong

Banners returning [retreating] across Liaodong [appear] as fragments of red.
The churning Sal-su River sweeps along sand and insects [after Eulji Mundeok built a dam and released it as Sui forces were crossing].
Eulji Mundeok was truly a man of talent.
He was the first to advocate five character lined poems. [Like the one he sent to the invading Sui general before defeating him in ambush.]

Sal-su River (薩水 살수): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Another name for the Cheongcheon River (淸川江) is Sal-su. Emerging from Mount Myohyang (妙香山) it passes to the north of Anju Fortress (安州城) and flows westwards for 30 li (12km) before merging with the Bakcheon River (博川江) and into the sea.”

Eulji Mundeok (乙支文德): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “Eulji Mundeok was calm, dauntless and possessed wisdom. During the Kaihuang (開皇 개황 581-600) reign (of Emperor Wen 文帝 r.581-604) of the Sui dynasty (隨), [future] Emperor Yang (煬帝 r.604-618) issued an edict to subjugate Goguryeo. Great General of the Left (左翊衛大將軍 좌익위대장군), Yuwen Shu (宇文述 우문술) set out on the road to Buyeo whilst Great General of the Right (右翊衛大將軍), Yu Zhongwen (于仲文 우중문), set out on the road to Lelang (樂浪道), arriving together as the imperial Nine Armies (九軍 n.24) at the Amnok River (鴨綠江). Seeing that the Sui soldiers were hungry and in order to make them more tired, Eulji Mundeok [purposefully] lost each battle such that in one day the Sui won as many as seven battles. Crossing the Sal-su River to the east, the Sui army set up camp 30 li (12km) from Pyeongyang Fortress. Eulji Mundeok sent a false envoy to the Sui saying that they would surrender, whereupon Yuwen Shu and the others formed their army into a square (方陣) and began to turn around. Mobilising his army, Eulji Mundeok then attacked on all four sides. Reaching the Sal-su River, when half of the Sui army had crossed, Eulji Mundeok attacked the back army. Upon killing youtunwei General of the Right (右屯衛將軍 우둔위장군), Xing Shi Xiong (辛世雄 신세웅) the entire Sui army collapsed and fleeing, reached the Amnok River in a day and night. When the Sui army first came to Liaodong it was composed of 305,000 men, but when it returned there were merely 7,700.” 

to advocate five syllable lined poems (倡五言詩): according to the Suishu (Book of Sui 隨書), “At the time of the Liaodong War, Yu Zhongwen (于仲文) led his army on the Lelang Road (낙랑도) and reached the Amnok River. When Goguryeo general Eulji Mundeok pretended to capitulate, Yu Zhongwen intended to capture him but Shangshu-youcheng (尙書右承 상서우승) Liu Shi Long (劉士龍 유사룡) restrained him and in the end Eulji Mundeok was let go. Regretting this Yu Zhongwen subsequently sent a messenger to Eulji Mundeok saying as a lie, ‘I have something to discuss with you, so it would be good if you returned.’ Eulji Mundeok did not return however and eventually crossed [the Amnok River back into Goguryeo]. Selecting mounted warriors (騎), Yu Zhongwen crossed the river and at every battle defeated his enemy. Eulji Mundeok then sent him a poem, ‘Amazing plots are researched by heaven, subtle calculations penetrate the geography. Much merit has been achieved in [your] victories, I hope you will be satisfied and halt [your invasion].'”

13
句麗錯料下句麗  구려착료하구려  去去入去上去去(霽)
駐蹕山靑老六師  주필산청로육사  去   平平上入平(支)
爲問西京紅拂妓  위문서경홍불기  平去平平平入上
虯髥客是莫離支  규염객시막리지  平入上入平平

gu ryeo chak ryo ha gu ryeo
ju pil san cheong ro yuk sa
wi mun seo gyeong hong bul gi
gyu yeom gaek si mak ri ji

[Go “high”] Guryeo was inappropriately referred to as ”base” Guryeo.
Ju’pil mountain [remains] green but the emperor’s army (六師) has grown old.
One [should] question Hongfu-ji of the [Sui] Western Capital [modern day Xian]
For the Curly-Bearded Guest was a
mangniji.

low/base-Guryeo (下句麗): according to the Hou Hanshu (後漢書), “Wang Mang (王莽 왕망) [sole emperor of the short lived Xin Dynasty] named the king of High Guryeo (高句麗), lord of Low Guryeo (下句麗侯) instead.” According to You Tong’s (尤侗 우통, 1618-1704) Waiguo-zhuzhici (Zhuzhi Lyrics on Foreign Countries 外國竹枝詞), “High Guryeo was reduced to Low Guryeo.”

Ju’pil mountain (駐蹕山): according to the Tangshu (Book of Tang 唐書), “In an attempt to conquer Goguryeo, Emperor Taizong (太宗 r.626-49), personally led the army. Arriving at Ansi Fortress (安市城), Yoksal officer of the North (北部 褥薩) Go Yeon-su (高延壽) and Yoksal officer of the South (南部 褥薩), Go Hye-jin (高惠眞), led a group [of Goguryeo people] who came to submit to the emperor. Owing to this, the mountain visited by the emperor was named Ju’pil (Ch. Zhubishan, “Royal Carriage Halting Mountain”) and on its rocks the military achievements were recorded. The emperor then attacked Ansi Fortress but failed to make it surrender. If anyone in the fortress saw the emperor’s banner, they would climb the low motte and begin a great racket. This angered the emperor. Using wooden branches, the king of Jiangxia (江夏王), Dao Zong (道宗), piled up a mound of earth closely threatening Ansi Fortress. Guoyi-du/dou-wei (果毅都尉 과의도위) major Fu Fu’ai (傅伏愛) was defending the earth mound when it collapsed from the top and, engulfing Ansi Fortress, caused the main wall to collapse. Whilst Fu Fu’ai was away from his troops, Goguryeo soldiers emerged from the fortress and took up position on the earth mound where they dug trenches blocking the approach. They then piled up firewood and set it alight forming a shield to staunchly defend [themselves]. The emperor had Fu Fu’ai executed and ordered his army to turn back. Climbing to the top of the fortress, the Goguryeo chieften (酋長 추장, who was Yang Manchun 楊萬春) bowed in gratitude. Impressed by his staunch defense, the emperor presented him with a hundred rolls (匹 필) of silk.”

mangniji (莫離支): according to the Tangshu (唐書), “Gae So-mun (蓋蘇文 603-66) was also known as Gae Geum (蓋金) whilst his surname was Cheon (泉씨 n.33 [His surname was originally Yeon 淵 but because this was the name of Tang Emperor Gaozu, Li Yuan (李淵 r.618-26), Chinese scribes would have changed the character]). Claiming himself to have been born from water, he charmed/bewildered the common people. Becoming mangniji (supreme military leader) he ruled the country in the way he wished and so his position could be likened to the [prime ministerial] bingbu-shangshu (兵部尙書 병부상서) zhongshuling (中書令 중서령 n.34) [position] of the Tang (唐). His appearance was striking and handsome with a beautiful beard. His cap and clothes were all adorned with gold and he carried five swords on him such that those on his left and right would not dare look up at him. When mounting his horse, he would have noble men bow down and then step on their backs. When leaving or entering the military camp, he would [have people] shout not to approach (禁切) him. Those passing by would cower in fear even burrowing [their faces] into holes.” According to the Haedong-paeseung (Unofficial History of Korea 海東稗乘), “Although Qiuranke-chuan (Tale of the Curly-Bearded Guest 虯髥客傳 규염객전) is a Tang novel, there probably was such a person [as Hongfu-ji a female character in the story]. Considering that Buyeo’s land was inherited by Goguryeo, at the time of the Sui-Tang transition, there was no country known as Buyeo. When it was reported that the Nanman southern barbarians (南蠻 남만) ‘took hundreds of thousands of soldiers on thousands of boats and entered Buyeo,’ Buyeo meant Goguryeo. Something to consider is that, as the son of the (Goguryeo) East dae’in (東部大人 n.36 Goguryeo chieftain), Gae So-mun’s personality was crude and arrogant. Exploiting the chaos at the end of Sui, he roamed in China and schemed about the future, but upon witnessing the ability of Emperor Wen (文皇) [refers to the full title of Tang Emperor Taizong n.37] he returned to the east and mobilizing an army led a revolt, thereby becoming mangniji.”

    

報德 Bodeok

In the Tangshu (唐書) it is written, “In the first Qianfeng year (乾封元年 건봉원년 666-7) [of Emperor Gao Zong (r.649-83)], when moving to conquer Goguryeo, [the emperor] made Li Ji (李勣 이적 d.669 n.39) both Dazongguan field marshall of the Liaodong Road marches (療東道行軍大總管) and anfu-dashi high sheriff (安撫大使). In the third year, they surrounded Pyeongyang Fortress and captured the Goguryeo king, Jang (臧 r.642-68). The territory [of Goguryeo] was divided into 9 commanderies (都督府), 42 provinces (州) and 100 counties (縣) whilst the Protectorate General to Pacify the East (安東都護府) was also established. In the following Zongzhang year (總章 668-9, the 6th year of Emperor Gao Zong) General Gyeom Mo-jam (鉗牟岑 n.42) raised men and led a revolt establishing as king An-sun (安舜= 安勝 안승 n.43) whose maternal grandfather was King Jang.”

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “In the 10th year of Silla King Mun-mu (文武王 r.661-81), the daehyeong (大兄 n.45) of Surim Fortress (水臨城 in modern Singye-gun (新溪郡) Hwanghae-do n.44), Mo-jam (牟岑), searched between Gungmo Fortress (窮牟城 in modern Seoheung-gun (瑞興郡) Hwanghae-do n.46) and Saya Island (史冶島, modern Soya-do (蘇爺島) in Deokjeok-myeon, Ungjin-gun, Gyeonggi-do n.47) for An-seung (安勝), the son of Goguryeo daesin (大臣) Yeon Jeong-to (淵淨土 who was the younger brother of Yeon Gaesomun (淵蓋蘇文) and had himself surrendered to Silla n.48). Meeting him at Han Fortress (漢城), Mo-jam made An-seung king. He then dispatched a sohyeong (小兄 n.49), dasik (? 多式) and others [to Silla] delivering the message, ‘Re-establishing a fallen kingdom and continuing a line of descent is the righteous way (公義) of heaven. We rely (望) entirely on the great kingdom (大國 ie Silla).’ The [Silla] king allowed them to reside in Geummajeo (金馬渚 modern Iksan, North Jeolla-do n.50) to the west [of Silla] and enfeoffed Anseung as Goguryeo king. In the 14th year [of King Mun-mu], Anseung was re-enfeoffed as king of Bodeok and his younger sister became a secondary wife [to King Mun-mu]. In the 2nd year of King Sin-mun’s reign, Anseung was called to the Silla court and given the Silla title of so’pan (蘇判 n.51 3rd out of 17 ranks) together with the surname Kim (金씨).”

In the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽) it is written, “Iksan County (益山郡) was originally Mahan (馬韓國) and when it merged with Baekje it was named Geummajeo (金馬渚).”

14
春艸萋萋金馬渚  춘초처처금마저  平上 平上上
句麗南波有荒城  구려남파유황성  去去平平上平平(庚)
未知慾報誰家德  미지욕보수가덕  去平入去平平入
可惜英風劒大兄  가석영풍검대형  上入平平去去平 

chun cho cheo cheo geum ma jeo
gu ryeo nam pa yu hwang seong
mi ji yuk bo su ga deok
ga seok yeong pung geom dae hyeong

Lush spring grasses grow over Geummajeo.
South of the water is the ruined fortress occupied by [the remnants of] Goguryeo [led by Anseung].
Who knows whose kindness [Anseung] wanted to repay.
The noble
daehyeong Geom [Mo-jam]’s [end, murdered by Anseung] was lamentable.

daehyeong Geom (劒大兄): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “In a bid to restore the kingdom, Geom Mo-jam (劒牟岑) led a revolt against the Tang and made king the grandson of the [last Goguryeo] monarch through his daughter (外孫), An-sun (安舜).” It also records, “Daehyeong Mo-jam consolidated the remaining [Goguryeo] subjects, crossed south of the Pae River (浿江) and killed the Tang official there.” According to the Tangshu (唐書), “In the 2nd Zongzang (總章 669) year, Go Gan (高人+品 고간) and Li Jin-xing/Genhaeng (李謹行 이근행) were made field marshals (行軍總管 xingjun-zongguan) by the emperor and ordered to subjugate An-sun who subsequently killed Mo-jam and fled to Silla.”

沸流 Biryu

In the geography section (地理志) of the Liaoshi (History of Liao 遼史) it is written, “Jeong-ju (正州) was originally the former territory of the king of Biryu (沸流王) but it was annexed by Gongsun Kang (公孫康). [Later on] Balhae established Biryu-gun where the Biryu-su river (沸流水) is located.”

In the Samguk-sagi (三國史記) it is written, “In the 2nd year of Goguryeo’s founder, the king of Biryu, Song-yang (松讓) came and surrendered. The region was called Damuldo (多勿都) and Song-yang was made [its] lord. In the Goguryeo language, the restoration of old territory is called da’mul.”

In the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽) it is written, “Seongcheon-bu (成川府) was originally the site of Biryu king, Song-yang’s capital.”

15
劒樣靑峰一十二  검양청봉일십이  去去平平入入去
遊車衣水逝湯湯  유거의수서탕탕  平平平上去平平(陽)
朱蒙不是眞豪傑  주몽불시진호걸  平平入上平平入
欺負酸寒喫菜王  기부산한끽채왕  平上平平入去平 

geom yang cheong bong il sip i
yu geo wi su seo tang tang
ju mong bul si jin ho geol
gi bu san han ggik chae wang

Twelve green mountain peaks [of Mount Heulgol 紇骨山 rise up] in the shape of swords.
The water of the Yugeo’ui River flows forcefully.
Jumong was not such a perfect hero,
He tricked a [humble and] poor king who ate [only] vegetables into [accepting] defeat.

green mountain peaks in the shape of swords (劒樣靑峰): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “Mount Heulgol (紇骨山) is two li (0.8km) to the northwest of Seongcheon-bu (成川府) and it has twelve tightly clustered peaks. Bak Won-hyeong (朴元亨 1411-69 n.53) wrote the poem, ‘The mountain peaks clustered beside the river are pointed like swords. The water in front of the peaks looks like indigo dye has been added.‘”

the Yugeo’i-su River (遊車衣水): according to the Yeoji-seungnam (輿地勝覽), “The Biryu River (沸流江) is the Jolbon Stream (卒本川) and it is commonly known as the Yugeo’ui Rapids (遊車衣津). It is 30 paces (步) to the west of Seongcheon-bu (成川府). It has two sources, one emerges from Mount Ogang (吳江山) in Yangdeok-hyeon (陽德縣) and the other from Daemowon-dong Cave (大母院洞) in Maengsan-hyeon (孟山縣). To the north of Seongcheon-bu they merge and pass by/through Mount Heulgol. On the mountain there are four stone holes into which the water enters and reemerges bubbling which is why the river is called Biryu (bubbling/boiling current). At Jasan-gun (慈山郡) it also merges with Uga-yeon (禹家淵) before flowing into the Daedong River (大同江).”

the king who ate vegetables (喫菜王 끽채왕): according to the Samguk-sagi (三國史記), “King Dong-myeong of Goguryeo saw vegetable leaves floating down the Biryu-su River and so knew that people were living upstream. Consequently he went hunting and reached the country of Biryu. The king of Biryu, Song-yang, came out and said, ‘I lean against a corner of the sea, I could not see you earlier. It is good chance to meet one another today. But I do not know from where you have come.’ King Dong-myeong answered, ‘I am the son of the heavenly emperor and have established my capital at a certain location.’ Song-yang replied, ‘I am the hereditary king, this land is narrow and insufficient to receive two rulers. You have only recently established a capital, so how about you becoming a vassal to me?’ At this King Dong-myeong became angered and so they competed in archery but Song-yang was unable to match him.” According to the Go-gi (Old Records 古記), “King Dong-myeong competed with the king of Biryu, Song-yang, in archery. Song-yang drew a picture of a deer and placed it at not more than a hundred paces (步) but was not able to hit its navel. Jumong placed a jade ring at more than a hundred paces and then shattered it like a tile. Song-yang was shocked. He had intended to use the fact he had established his capital earlier to make [Goguryeo] his tributary, but when Jumong built his palace he used old wood for the pillars so that it looked a thousand years old. Song-yang did not dare to vie against him.”

Continue to part 3..