Silla Dynasty

Organised to coincide with the London Book Fair, this exhibition at the KCC is curated by the Korean Publishers Association: The Art of Printing: Korea’s Evolving Printing Types Exhibition Dates: 07 April 2014 – 14 June 2014 Venue: Korean Cultural Centre UK The World’s Oldest Wooden and Metal Printing Technologies – Korea’s Printing Culture presented […]

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2012 Travel Diary #19: Beopgyesa Temple and those Japanese feng-shui stakes

by Philip Gowman 16 October 2012
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Beopgyesa Temple (법게사) is the highest in Sancheong County and at least the third-highest in Korea. The good people of Sancheong believe that Beopgyesa is the highest temple in South Korea, a claim which is supported by Beopgyesa’s entry on the Cultural Heritage Administration website, where the following text is to be found: “It is […]

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2012 Travel Diary #16: Silla pagodas, Korea’s first beautiful village, and Nammyeong’s tomb

by Philip Gowman 19 September 2012
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29 March 2012. Today is the day we start the ascent of Jirisan, but first there’s a couple of local sites of interest that I need to visit. First, the two Unified Silla dynasty stone pagodas, which are now the only remnants of Dansoksa, a temple built in the middle of the eighth century. The […]

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Reading the Heavens Part 1 – Two Millennia of Astronomy in Korea

by Matthew Jackson 14 February 2012
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To celebrate star-crossed lovers everywhere, Matthew Jackson starts a series of articles on Korean astronomy As we can tell from ancient monuments like the Dolmen stones and more recent buildings such as Cheomseongdae, astronomy was big in Korea. Why was this exactly? Reverence for nature was part of it, but it was in fact more […]

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Archaeology study day in Cambridge

by Philip Gowman 2 February 2012
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An interesting half day this Saturday, 4 February: Study Day on the Archaeology of Early States on the Korean Peninsula AT THE McDONALD INSTITUTE FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESEARCH UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE SATURDAY 4TH FEBRUARY 2012 Organised by Professor Kim Jong-Il (Seoul National University and Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge) and Dr Simon Kaner (Sainsbury Institute […]

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Buddha’s Voice – The Bell of King Seongdeok

by Matthew Jackson 26 October 2011
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People sometimes take a jaundiced view of Korea’s estimation of the importance of its cultural heritage. In the case of the Sacred Bell of King Seongdeok, however, it was foreigner, Dr. Otto Kummel, a director at the National Museum of Germany, who suggested that the museum’s description of the bell as ‘the best in Korea’, […]

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Stargazing in Ancient Silla – the Cheomseongdae

by Matthew Jackson 18 October 2011
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Cheomseongdae, the world’s oldest surviving observatory, features a great deal in tourism material, and even if you haven’t been to Korea or the Gyeongju area, you will probably have seen it. You will also, if you are like me, have been somewhat underwhelmed by its rather modest appearance, which if anything does it less justice […]

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The Life and Teachings of Master Wonhyo

by Matthew Jackson 13 June 2011
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The life of Master Wonhyo (617-686 A.D.) is a typical Korean paradox. He was a scholar who composed over 100 works on Buddhist philosophy, whose influence in scholarship and teaching was felt in China and other surrounding countries. He is acknowledged today as the foremost figure in the history of Korean Buddhism. And yet, many […]

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Korean art – two millennia of globalisation

by Philip Gowman 19 November 2010
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“Why did it have to end so early?” asked a member of the audience at the conclusion of the British Museum’s study morning “Korea at the Crossroads” last weekend, 13 November. Strictly, the event had overrun by about five minutes, but you knew what she meant. More to the point would have been the question […]

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Gyeongju rooftile in BBC History of the World

by Philip Gowman 13 June 2010
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BBC's History of the World in 100 objects: a humble Silla Dynasty roof tile from Gyeongju is featured at number 49: http://bit.ly/bKaU1d #. From the British Museum’s permanent collection.

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Golden Earrings of Silla

by Matthew Jackson 9 September 2009
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Along with the famous Golden Crown of Hwangnam, the tombs of Silla contained many other, less immediately eye-catching objects of beauty. An example is the golden earrings, one of the literally thousands of accessories such as necklaces, rings, belts and shoes that were buried with the dead kings and queens in Kyongju, capital of the […]

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