The Donguibogam encyclopaedia of Traditional Korean Medicine

Here you can find LKL’s articles about the Traditional Korean Medicine “Bible”, completed by Joseon dynasty court physician Heo Jun in 1610.

To be honest, I’ve always wondered why an item listed in UNESCO’s Memory of the World register was only rated a “Treasure” (no 1085) rather than a “National Treasure”. The three sets of the encyclopaedia’s first edition are currently held by the National Library of Korea, the Kyujanggak Institute For Korean Studies and the Academy […]

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2013 Travel Diary #26: The first round of farewells

by Philip Gowman 12 September 2013
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Donguibogam Village, Sancheong-gun, Thursday 12 September, 12 noon. After a refreshing herbal tea, it was time for lunch: Sancheong Beef bulgogi with Mr Byeon, Min Hyang-sik and Min Young-ki. Not only barbecued beef, but in increasing order of difficulty, raw beef fillet, raw beef liver, and raw beef lung. I really struggled with the last […]

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2013 Travel Diary #24: Yin, Yang and Ginseng

by Philip Gowman 11 September 2013
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Donguibogam Village, Sancheong-gun, Wednesday 11 September, 5:30pm. Refreshed by our nap on the fragrant pillow, we move on from the Traditional Medicine Experience Pavilion to the Theme Hall, outside which stand the statues of the two best known figures in Korean Traditional Medicine, who have now made it into popular culture courtesy of TV dramas: […]

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2013 Travel Diary #22: Tiger, Bear and herb: the traditional Korean medicine experience

by Philip Gowman 11 September 2013
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Donguibogam Village, Sancheong-gun, Wednesday 11 September, 4pm. In Korean mythology, it seems that it’s not the bear that has the sore head. It’s the tiger. In the Korean Medicine Theme Park, which forms part of the Donguibogam Village, the exhibits focus on the different parts of the human body, but throughout there is the recurring […]

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2013 Travel Diary #3: Preparing for the Expo

by Philip Gowman 6 September 2013
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Donguibogam Village, Sancheong-gun, Friday 6 September, 7am. Four hundred years ago, a ground-breaking medical encyclopaedia was published. The Donguibogam, literally the Principles and Practice of Eastern Medicine, was compiled and edited by Heo Jun, a Korean royal doctor, with the support of a team of medical scholars and academics. The work had been commissioned by […]

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What is the Donguibogam and what is in it?

by Jin-woong Lim 30 October 2011
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Koreans usually have two choices when they have to visit a clinic: one is a medical clinic, employing western medicine for treatment; and the other is a traditional clinic, employing traditional medicine. There are many obvious differences between the two types, mainly concerning methods of diagnosis and treatment. Most importantly, the traditional medical clinic has […]

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Donguibogam: Prevention before Treatment

by Sena Lee 20 October 2011
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The Donguibogam is a medical encyclopedia written by Heo Jun (1539-1615), a royal physician and renowned doctor, in the 16th to 17th century. People often say there has been no traditional Korean medicine (TKM) doctor greater than him since. The encyclopedia was registered at UNESCO as part of the ‘Memory of the World’ register in […]

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Donguibogam to feature at the Thames Festival

by Sena Lee 7 September 2011
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2013 will see the 400th anniversary of the first publication of the Donguibogam, the most precious book in traditional Korean medicine (TKM). There will be a commemorative World Traditional Medicine EXPO (known as Donguibogam EXPO) in Sancheong in 2013 (6 September — 20 October, 45 days) to celebrate this anniversary. Sancheong County, at the foot […]

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Is there a doctor in the peninsula? – Heo Jun and the Donguibogam medical textbook

by Matthew Jackson 26 August 2011
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Known as one of the greatest books in the history of Eastern medicine, the Donguibogam was composed by Heo Jun, a court physician in the early 17th century, and is today included as part of UNESCO’s World Heritage list. Despite the huge advances in medicine since that time, it is still referred to by doctors […]

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Heo Jun and Sancheong’s herbal heritage

by Philip Gowman 12 July 2010
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Thursday 6 May 2010. The mayor hurries off for an appointment: not only is the Sancheong Medicinal Herb Festival in full swing, but elections are approaching in a month’s time. In fact I’m amazed he has found time to meet with this foreign blogger at all. He leaves the rest of us to finish the […]

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2010 Travel Diary #24: Lunch with Sancheong’s Mayor and the battle for the 2013 Donguibogam Expo

by Philip Gowman 7 July 2010
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Thursday 6 May 2010. We drive to a quiet restaurant – though in Sancheong County that describes most of them. In the shaded car park we are greeted by a large reception committee. The mayor and his wife, all dressed in hanbok, are waiting, and many of the county officials. I think my friend Kyung-sook […]

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