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In Korea, historical grievances last down the generations

Ancestral table
Photo: Korea Times

Today’s Korea Times article, Man fined for obstructing ancestral rite, is nicely timed to ensure good behaviour over the Chuseok period.

But the ancestral rite Mr Kim disrupted was not any old rite. This is a family grievance that goes back to 1453 and the reign of King Sejo:

The court said Kim got into a physical confrontation to thwart the ritual, organized by Seonyanghoe, a group of descendants of six Joseon Kingdom ministers called Sayuksin, at a park in Seoul set up to commemorate their loyal spirit, in 2011. The six, who were executed by King Sejo, who crowned himself after forcibly ousting his teenage nephew King Danjong, have been revered for their loyalty to this day. … Kim is a member of Hyeonchanghoe, another group of descendants of Kim Moon-ki, a high-profile figure who was also killed for protesting against King Sejo during the same period, claiming that his ancestor should receive the same recognition as the six. But Seonyanghoe had refused Kim’s request.

The story of the death of the Sayuksin was told in an Oh Tae-seok play screened at the KCC last year.

(HT to Sora Kim-Russell)

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