King Jeongjo (r 1776-1800)

Seoul, Sunday 1 May 2011. In previous years I had been foiled in my attempts to get to see the famous Secret Garden behind the UNESCO-listed Changdeok Palace. Either there were building works going on, or access was only via guided tour and I had missed my slot, or some other obstacle was put in […]

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The Shining Fortress part 2: its remarkable story.

by Matthew Jackson 7 August 2009
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by Matthew Jackson The story which surrounds the building of the Hwaseong fortress is an extraordinary one. The fortress was originally built as part of the new Suwon city, a project initiated by King Chongjo. King Chongjo (or King Jeongjo, depending on your preferred romanization) had been greatly devoted to his father, Sado Seja, who […]

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The Shining Fortress part 1: its construction

by Matthew Jackson 28 July 2009
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by Matthew Jackson The official report by the advisors to UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee concluded that the Suwon Hwaseong Fortress “represents the pinnacle of 18th century military architecture, incorporating the best of that from Europe and from the Far East. As such it has a unique historical importance”. What makes Hwaseong special? Following the editor’s […]

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